Children are motivated to do better with handmade merit certificates and there are annual award functions, too. A child is appreciated for her work, whether she has mastered it or is still learning, but she is corrected when she makes mistakes.
The philosophy’s premise
- Early months spent by a child in a Playway school are meant for bonding with her friends and teachers. The child moves around the class freely, choosing what she wants to do and making friends.
- An important developmental goal is confidence and participation. Other goals include independence, patience, and cooperation.
- The entire curriculum is based on little experiments and activities that focus on introducing a new concept.
- Poster-making, doodling with crayons, pottery, lawn walks and simple games using balls and plastic bats are typical school activities.
- Fluency in language is not a pre-requisite.
The Reggio Emilia Approach
Started by Loris Malaguzzi in Italy after World War II, this method of early learning was developed as a response to the need of the hour: a new, quick approach to education that was effective and easy to implement.
This approach is based on respect, responsibility, discussion and explanations in a support group, within a self-guided curriculum that is shaped by the community. When this approach was first developed, evening meetings were held in the villages to decide what the children should be taught and how.
Reggio Emilia is a complex system involving the participation of many parties- students, teachers, and parents, and it is often not well understood because of its dependence on so many factors. It aims to nurture the ability to think independently, quickly and effectively, and allows room for change by allowing so many people to have a say in how children are taught. In a way, it promotes the democratisation of education at the grassroots.
Here’s a link to a page explaining more about this system: www.reggiokids.com/ about/about_approach.php
The philosophy’s premise
- The teacher collaborates with the parents and guides children in their activities. She is seen as a co-learner or co-researcher, learning along with the students she teaches.
- Parents are an integral part of the system, and are expected to interact regularly with the teacher and provide their input and feedback.
- The environment is considered the third teacher, after the teacher and community.
- Drawing, sculpting, dramatic theatre, and long term projects are pillars of this method. Projects provide scope for learning, research, insight, progress, and reflection and correction with the emergence of further understanding.
- Documentation is critical to this approach, as it is used as a research tools by children, and also by faculty to observe children and gain new insights into the way they learn.