By Tamlyn Martin
Yesterday I did a morning of training on the Regio approach to early childhood learning at the world-renowned Loris Malaguzzi centre in the beautiful town of Regio Emilia. In fact, this little town has thrived over the last 90 yrs due to its extraordinary civic focus on early childhood development, the municipality quite literally invests whole heartedly into the radical care and development of the communities children, especially between the ages 2 to 6.
Their approach is defined by an extreme respect for the innate intelligence and inquisitive ability in young learners who are seen as researchers and investigators rather than vessels needing to be filled with pre-existing knowledge. The method requires a unique type of teaching or facilitation that requires the educator to look at the world through the exploratory eyes of the child and create learning provocations that build agency, autonomy, resilience and most importantly a passion for learning based on curiosity and experimentation.
Over the last 2 weeks the word “Attenzione” used how we would use the word careful has been jumping at me… almost like a scolding word! But after yesterday’s training I now realise that this boldly passionate use of this phrase is central to this type of learning which hinges on an extreme type of mindfulness, observation, analysis and non-stop questioning.
Being fully present and nourishing the child and the community through being respectfully present and witnessing, documenting and discussing what is happening around you in an openminded way. Not surprising that educator’s pilgrim here to refine their professional practice from across the world. As you can guess from the pictures this attention is also manifested in exquisite artistic learning instillation… beauty, order and curatorship being central to their Ateliers, or learning laboratories. I’m training to become an Atelierista or the artist that runs one of these spaces and the projects emanating from these. Hoping to make it for all types and ages of learning to learn.