Exploring the Playful Learning Approach of Woodbury Preschool

Explore how the museum’s Woodbury Preschool implements the Reggio Emilia approach to early childhood education. Visit the preschool environments and review documentation by teachers that records student experiences, thoughts, and ideas, as well as examples of student work. Learn how student interests lead to emergent projects and examine the role of the teachers, the environment, and parental involvement in a preschool.

Lesson extensions for before or after your visit

The following activities are designed for your class to enjoy before or after your museum visit.  Familiarizing students with the lesson concepts can enrich their museum experience.

The hundred languages of children

Explain that the phrase, “the hundred languages of children” refers to the idea that children can express their thinking in many ways. Work together as a class to generate a list of the many ways children can express their thinking. Post the list in the classroom and add to it as new ways of expression come to mind.

The Reggio Emilia approach

In order to familiarize students with the Reggio Emilia approach to teaching and learning, have them read, “Play and the Hundred Languages of Children: An Interview with Lella Gandini” published in the American Journal of Play.

Discuss the similarities and differences between the Reggio Emilia approach and other early childhood approaches your class has examined. Choose another approach and compare the image of the child, the role of parents, the role of the teacher, the environment, and the materials used with the Reggio Emilia approach.