The early childhood educational system in the City of Reggio Emilia in northern Italy has evolved over the past sixty years and was initially led and developed by the founder and educational theorist, Loris Malaguzzi. The schools are municipally funded and community managed.
The schools demonstrate a distinctive and innovative curriculum and pedagogy as well as a method of school organisation which recognises the potential of young children to question, reflect, problem solve, theorise, experiment and express their findings through at least ‘a hundred languages’. The schools demonstrate, by making children’s learning visible, that children are capable of devising creative ways of knowing, understanding and making connections and meaning. There is a particular emphasis on the role of the environment, both social and physical, in their organisational strategies. The process and outcomes of their work is made visible through the pedagogical documentation of teachers, who are considered researchers within their own classrooms.
The city of Reggio Emilia has achieved growing international acclaim since 1991 when Newsweek designated their schools for young children as the best in the world.