An approach to foster relationships, knowledge and imagination.
The Discovery Preschools are private Centre’s that offer families exceptional educational child care, without discrimination, for children ages 2 months and up to 5 years.
The Discovery Preschools support a challenging environment that intrigues a child’s natural intuitive curiosity. It is a unique childcare experience that families will be proud to be a part of. We acknowledge the incredible work of the children, parents and teachers in Reggio Emilia, Italy. Their approach to childcare has inspired many educators from around the world to visit these schools and welcome many aspects of this approach into our North American culture and communities. Our schools also reflect the new Pedagogy in Ontario for the Early Years.
How Does Learning Happen? Is the Ministry of Education’s formal document which organizes experiences and curriculum into four foundational conditions that are important for children togrow and flourish: Belonging, Well-Being, Engagement, and Expression. These foundations are governed by the Child Care and Early Years Act, and therefore, part of our yearly licensing review. Our Program Statement is our guiding research and interpretation that we have embraced a seamless philosophy supporting our years of personal research of world-renown educational ideas and provincial pedagogy.
The Discovery Preschools are beautiful, esthetically designed spaces. Each interior is accessible to all people and promotes the self-help skills of young children. Each space is filled with natural light promoting the opportunity of transparency to our surrounding community.
What you will notice:
Our schools proudly serve a hot nutritional lunch each day as well as a morning and afternoon snack. All meals are prepared at Beckenridge Discovery Preschool or Mother’s Deli to maintain high quality and delicious selections. The cultural diversity of the community is reflected in the meals as well as vegetarian and allergy safe selections within our resources. Our Nut Safe Policy restricts food being brought to the school. Please see the office when bringing food to the school for means of a birthday celebration or holiday.
Our Inspiration for Outstanding Curriculum
Our school reflects a strong image of the child and we encourage them to be constructors of their own meaningful experience within the school. They are expert thinkers and intuitive problem solvers. We are challenged by their curiosity and engage them to be co-participants in the daily life of the school. These values contribute to the formation of creativity, intelligence and awareness in children.
You will notice:
An emergent curriculum engages children and teachers in observations, to hypothesize and predict, to develop a dialogue of thought provoking questions, to document events, and to celebrate the joys of learning. The child’s voice and ideas are to be encouraged as it is the basis of the curriculum. Careful choices are made to select projects for research and study. Children enjoy a curriculum that is meaningful to immediate experiences.
Your child will experience:
The process of the groups work is of extreme importance and much of the learning comes from making connections and retracing steps than from the final product itself. The process of documentation makes the learning visible. It is an invaluable contribution by the children and teachers that depicts the emotional and intellectual value of the curriculum. It has the potential to involve the viewer into this dialogue to create a community of learners: the child, teacher and parent. The work documented not only enhances teaching, but it also transforms it into a valuable history that frames the school.
How does this happen?
The curriculum depends on the continuity of time and the flexibility to avoid unnecessary transitions that may interrupt work and discovery. Washroom breaks will be guided by the children’s natural flow of time and as needed. Indoor and outdoor curriculum learning will be based on the flow of the day.
The environment plays a very important part of a person’s day and sends non-verbal messages of how to react in that space. Our environment creates the concept of a third teacher. The importance of our work, respect for all people, self-accomplishment and pride, the promotion of teamwork are planned for in the workspaces designed. Many materials will be made available to the children to encourage new skills and refinement of skills previously acquired.
Our environment supports:
Mutual respect and admiration builds strong relationships and fosters co-participation between peers, teachers and parents. The dynamics of negotiation and cognitive coordination enrich children’s ideas and concepts of the world around them. This relationship context is what children and families desire in order for connections of the school experience to be stronger and continuous.
We connect with children to:
Your family has the right to be involved in your experience at the school. You have the opportunity of involvement in many creative ways. We respect that you are experts on your children. We value that you bring diverse social, cultural, and linguistic perspectives to our school. Please feel free to bring in recycled materials, offer to help out in the garden, or to provide a service to the school by means of your profession and hobbies. The more resources that the school can draw from, the richer the children’s experience can be.
Your family will enjoy:
The Educators are competent and capable, curious, and rich in experience. They are knowledgeable, caring, reflective, and resourceful professionals. They bring diverse social, cultural, and linguistic perspectives. They collaborate with others to create engaging environments and experiences to foster children’s learning and development. Educators are lifelong learners. and their understanding of the individual children and families they work with.
We believe in a lifetime of learning by:
Discovery Preschools embrace a strong sense of respect for the people who use the school and the community that supports us. We believe that it is an integral part of being a good citizen. Making connections between adults and children is the most important connection that we can make with children. This interconnectivity focuses on our emotional and cognitive development providing a successful adult/child social connection. Both the adult and child need to continuously develop skills that support successful relationships, solving problems, and the adaptation to different social settings. We focus all our actions on self-awareness, self-regulation, being cooperative, and above all to be caring.
What you’ll notice:
Discovery Preschools have instilled these principals since 2002. We have been leaders in our community in the support of many educators, and we have studied with and about all the leading experts that these principals are based from. We keep documentation and reviews about how the Program Statement and its respective strategies affect our learning environment.
No way. The hundred is there.
The child is made of one hundred.The child hasa hundred languagesa hundred handsa hundred thoughtsa hundred ways of thinkingof playing, of speakinga hundred always a hundredways of listeningof marveling of lovinga hundred joysfor singing and understandinga hundred worldsto discovera hundred worldsto inventa hundred worldsto dream.The child hasa hundred languages(and a hundred hundred hundred more)But they steal ninety- nine.The school and the cultureseparate the head from the body.They tell the child: to think without handsto do without headto listen and not to speakto understand without joyto love and to marvelonly at Easter and Christmas.They tell the child:to discover the world already thereand of the hundredthey steal ninety- nine.They tell the child:that work and playreality and fantasyscience and imaginationsky and earthreason and dreamare thingsthat do not belong togetherAnd thus they tell the childthat the hundred is not there.The child says:No way. The hundred is there.~Loris Malaguzzi
Q: What is “the Reggio approach?”
The Reggio Emilia philosophy and approach to early childhood education has developed and continues to evolve as a result of over 40 years of experience within a system of municipal infant-toddler centers and preschools in Reggio Emilia, Italy. Parents, who started the schools in the 1940s, continue to participate to ensure the schools reflect the values of the community. From the beginning, the late Loris Malaguzzi, leader, philosopher and innovator in education, who was then a young teacher, guided and directed the energies of those parents and several teachers. Through many years of work with them, he developed an education based on relationship, which has become widely known and valued. The Reggio Emilia approach is built upon a solid foundation of connected philosophical principles and extensive experience. Educators in Reggio Emilia have been inspired by many early childhood psychologists and philosophers, such as Dewey, Piaget, Vygotsky, Gardner and Bruner. Please understand that we are not referring to an early childhood method or set curriculum, but rather a deep knowledge in theory and community-constructed values that have been and are continuously being translated into high quality early childhood practices. As a result, educational theory and practice in Reggio Emilia is strongly connected. To learn more about fundamental principles of the Reggio approach, read Lella Gandini’s article, “Fundamentals of the Reggio Emilia Approach to Early Childhood Education,” published in the November 1993 issue of Young Children or Lella’s chapter in Next Steps Toward Teaching the Reggio Way: Accepting the Challenge to Change, edited by Joanne Hendrick.The Reggio educators’ intention in sharing their experience with educators around the world is to encourage others to understand their own values regarding childhood, education and community. Reggio educators hope to promote dialogue among educators, so that they will come to understand their own identity as a school community. Through this process, educators can then ensure that the learning and relationships of children, teachers and parents within their school community reflect their shared values.
Q: How can I learn more about the Reggio approach?
There are numerous professional development initiatives in North America and in Reggio Emilia for those who are interested in learning more about the experience of educators in Reggio and those in North America inspired by this philosophy. See the home page of the NAREA website for information on “The Hundred Languages of Children” exhibit schedule, study tours to Reggio Emilia as well as NAREA professional development initiatives. For further information, click on the Professional Development section of the NAREA website. There you will find the Conferences and Initiatives page with information on conferences, seminars, workshops and learning tours in Reggio-inspired schools in North America and the General Bibliography page with a comprehensive listing of print and video resources. For a listing of resources published by Reggio Children, go to their website: www.reggiochildren.itThose seeking to learn more might find NAREA’s annual summer conference to be of particular interest. Each year, the conference is located in a different community in North America, in order to encounter different regions and different contexts. The conference features the voices and experiences of classroom teachers, administrators, policy-makers, professors, authors and others. Opportunities for small group discussions and networking are maximized, in order for conference participants to build stronger connections with each other in the process of learning.
Q: What is the meaning of the phrase “the hundred languages of children?”
Educators in Reggio believe that children have the right and the ability to express their thinking, theories, ideas, learning and emotions in many ways. Therefore, Reggio educators provide children with a wide range of materials and media, and welcome a diversity of experiences, so that children encounter many avenues for thinking, revising, constructing, negotiating, developing and symbolically expressing their thoughts and feelings. In this way, teachers, parents and children can better understand each other. These languages can include drawing, paint, clay, wire, natural and recycled materials, light and shadow, dramatic play, music and dance. They can also include expression with words through metaphors, stories or poems of the children’s interpretations and reflections about their experiences or through special design, such as maps and three dimensional constructions. In fact, there is not a separation between what it is considered traditionally artistic expression and academic education in the schools of Reggio Emilia. All are considered part of the one hundred and more languages of learning. Teachers in Reggio often encourage children to represent their ideas on a particular topic in multiple languages, and find that the process of moving between languages supports children in their understanding and learning. To learn more about the role of languages in children’s learning and relationships, read Children, Art, Artists: The Expressive Languages of Children, The Artistic Language of Alburto Burri; The Hundred Languages of Children: The Reggio Emilia Approach-Advanced Reflections
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