Thursday, November 29, 2012

R at Reggio Emilia Preschool

When looking into preschools for R, I became interested in the Montessori method. In the end, I decided to send her to a preschool without a particular "method" because I liked its location, teachers, and overall atmosphere. I am happy with this choice, and certainly R loves her school.
Learning about liquids (oil and water in bottles)
But I have a soft spot for the fancy Reggio Emilia (not Montessori per se, but a related philosophy) preschool. It costs a fortune (like $20,000 annually) and is not conveniently located (R would have to spend at least 40 minutes daily in commuting), so I eliminated it. We still go there for drop in sessions and additional classes (actually, R starts music class there next week) though.
Most of the "toys" aren't really toys, like this handmade shape sorter (they change them each week)
Or this cool little gizmo for rolling balls on
The drop in sessions take place in their "atelier" (such a pretentious name, I know), which is a truly beautiful space, full of light, specially made imported Italian Reggio furniture and interesting "toys". R always has a great time exploring there.
The multimedia corner, with a projector set up so kids can see themselves on the wall. R is fascinated.
R on the fancy Italian mats: I wanted some but then learned they cost hundreds of dollars each 
It's a nice change from typical play spaces for children, which tend to be really over-stimulating, noisy and full of plastic. Too bad classy stuff for children only comes at such a steep markup (true for toys, true for schools)!


  1. i can't believe how much she's learning while my kid is at daycare finger painting. To be fair though I have no idea what P does at school...

  2. I love all of these wooden/simple open-ended toys. I try to keep that around the house for the most part, although he has access to my ipad so that kind of spoils things. I'd love to put him in Montessori, but we are already paying $20k for non fancy-pants places. You know how the Bay area is.

  3. The schools in my area are truly a crapshoot. I had considered homeschooling in the past, but only as a last resort. It is not for every child, and just like any teaching style, it works better for some than other. But honestly... Ginny gets a lot of socialization through my mothers helpers (kids), play dates, and at the park, that I am considering just doing a homeschool curriculum for the pre-school years. The program I am looking at costs about $500 a year, but it includes ALL of the materials (curriculum, art supplies, manipulatives, etc.) and I would know that she is actually learning things. I'm still looking into it, but considering my degree is in education I feel like I have a pretty good handle on this, and am seriously considering it. Meh.

  4. The Reggio approach views the parent as an essential resource for their child's learning.
    Reggio Emilia