Having done a few tours with parents showing them our STEM room and discussing our approach to children's learning, both Julie and I have had parents ask us to explain the term “Reggio Emilia” as the Centre’s approach to education.
I usually ask before offering an explanation, “what are your expectations?”
Most parents decide to choose Tinkergarden because we offer child-centered programs and they have been experiencing firsthand how much their children love being in our programs. Which I think is really the most important thing you want your child to get out of their early education— a love of learning.
Coming into our STEM room and seeing the children interact with the objects from nature as well as the element placed to spark exploration and creativity, known to be a big part of the Reggio Emilia approach, really cements in the minds of the parents we see, that there are great benefits to be derived from this approach to learning. Here we will explain the theories behind our teaching philosophy. I’m hoping that this will help you to decide whether Tinkergarden is a good fit for your child.
At the Tinkergarden STEM Discovery Centre, there are no traces of rote learning, handwriting exercises or memorization– rather we see children immersed in discovering information through all their senses, and from multiple angles – scientifically, artistically, musically, etc.
How does the Reggio method of teaching work when adopted by schools here in Trinidad and Tobago? How do children learn skills without direct instruction and how do we know it is a wise choice in a competitive Primary school enrollment environment like ours?
Well behind the Reggio Approach are strong educational theories, practices and methods. In the Ministry of Education’s National Early Childhood Care and Education Curriculum Guide http://moe.edu.tt/Docs/Policies/ECCE/DRAFT_NATIONAL_CURRICULUM_GUIDE.pdf it reveals; “Exposure to the Reggio Emilia Approach assisted us in gaining a new conceptualization of the role of adults, key organizational features of the physical environment and on enduring social relationships with family and community” So yes the Ministry of education does approve of the Reggio Approach in Early Childhood education!