I must confess that I never read about Reggio Emilia when studied Psychology in Uni, but it came out when I started the research to develop My Little Van Gogh and when Simone from Jacaranda Montessori told that I could find it interesting. From that moment when I began to dig deeper and discovered that I was completely aligned to the principles and philosophy, I wanted to travel to Reggio Emilia where I got fascinated by the Recycling center which supplies all materials for the school's ateliers and the Malaguzzi International Center where I found inspiration to make my Atelier much more #ReggioInspired.
In the venues inspired by Reggio Emilia, an educational philosophy developed after World War II by teachers, parents and the psychologist Loris Malaguzzi in the villages around Reggio Emilia in Italy. The idea of the Atelier came to life as an approach for education in early ages with the aim of forming free children, able to think and act for themselves. The design of the space is very important, so that the children move in an environment that fosters communication and relationships, supporting the encounter with others.
The Atelier and it’s workshops are considered a learning laboratory where children experiment with all the stimuli that the environment contributes to them, favoring the creation of new concepts, developing their creativity, allowing the creation of visible products, where experience built through play-and-exploration is more important than the product itself.
This space aims to offer an environment that functions as a third teacher that motivates and invites to create and discover a place rich in materials of different formats, transformed into sounds, textures, images and flavors.
In the Atelier, children are the owners of their thoughts, their emotions and the contact they have with others, as it becomes a place for research, invention and empathy, expressed through a language that extends more from childhood to more advanced ages.
During my experience with My Little Van Gogh many moms have told me that their children do not like to do art at home, however in the Atelier they become very creative. Last Friday for example, one told me "when he comes here get magically inspired". In my opinion, in addition to the environment, creativity is contagious among children, as a chain reaction one begins to experiment and other follows that game to end up to do something together, it is very nice to see it! They learn and invent together flowing with freedom and security.
The atelier offers in addition to a fun experience offers great benefits in the development of children in early ages, as the children have the opportunity to experiment and explore they becomes agile to imagine and get creative by following 6 basic principles:
1. Autonomy. Children must learn to have some control and be able to direct their own learning
2. Experience: Children must learn through their experience by touching, listening, moving, seeing and hearing.
3. Relationship: Children must be able to relate to other children and materials in the world that they explore.
4. Expression: Children must have an infinite possibility of materials and stimuli to encourage their expression.
6. Freedom: Children natural development and relationship with the environment are the center of all activities so they can move with confidence and explore with curiosity the world that surrounds them. It is necessary to let them feel and create.
7. Respect: Children are considered competent, curious, imaginative, inventive, and with the desire to interact and communicate with others.
Unsurprisingly the Atelier experience offers great benefits in children development primarily in early ages, such as solving real problems of daily living among classmates, developing creative thinking and exploration.
Well this are some of the principles that inspire my work in My Little Van Gogh and my relationship with my daughter Miranda. Now, look around and think about the importance of space and environment in carrying out the activities in your daily life.
See you in next post!