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Reggio Emilia Approach

Some of the overarching themes that have carried CNS for more than seventy-five years include a deep respect for children and their families and the importance of building community.

We gain our curricular inspiration from early childhood programs in Reggio Emilia and Pistoia, Italy. They are renowned for their collaborative learning environments where these universal values are strengthened through community dialogue and a commitment to continued growth on the part of all members. The schools of Reggio Emilia continue to offer inspiration for us to be more reflective and intentional in our work. These world-renowned schools are driven by their strong image of children as competent, curious, and unique individuals who have many languages for expressing themselves and for representing their thinking.


The Reggio Emilia philosophy celebrates:​

  • collaboration

  • community

  • the environment

  • aesthetics

  • materials and the arts

  • transparency

  • parent participation

  • the image of all of their members (children, parents and teachers) as researchers

  • learning that emerges from questions, theories and passions

  • children’s ability to construct knowledge through exploration and working together


These values and beliefs are compelling as they provide deeper insight into much of what we have always believed at Community Nursery School. Inspiration from these schools help us to grow more thoughtful and purposeful about:

  • the value of listening more and speaking less

  • how the environment supports children’s learning

  • how to extend interests and explorations based on children’s curiosity and understanding

  • how to share our understanding with parents

  • how documentation supports learning

  • identifying and articulating our beliefs and giving careful thought to how our daily life at CNS reflects these beliefs

  • how to make our work more transparent and visible

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