What does it mean to be a Reggio Emilia inspired early learning service?
You do not need to look hard to find early learning services aligning their programs and practices with the Reggio Emilia educational project. Early learning services often describe themselves as ‘Reggio inspired’ while others may recruit for educators that demonstrate an understanding of the ‘Reggio approach.’ It is easy to understand why people would want to replicate it. This is a model of pre-school education that invites us to consider deeply, the role of children, families, educators and community.
Recently published works
A full list of published articles and blog posts are listed at the bottom of the page
Portfolios - Pedagogical documentation or souvenir?
KAREN HOPE shares some key discussion points after facilitating a group of educators, who were delving into re-thinking ways to document learning and development for educators and children. Karen asked the group ‘what current documentation practices might they leave behind?’—This opened up ideas to what changes could be implemented to create documentation to improve ideas, strategies, interpretations, and research.
Orange is the new surveillance
In parks, museums and other public spaces there are groups of preschool-aged children turning orange on excursions. You might have noticed these children, and their educators, as they move about in your community. They would be easy to see as they stroll about wearing hi-vis vests that people employed in hazardous industries wear as personal protective equipment. Hi-vis vests were designed to signal a person’s presence in a potentially risky space, so why are children wearing them in the park?
Why is the Reggio Emilia project so important in Australian early learning environments?
Why is the Reggio Emilia educational project—which exists in a context so far removed from ours, culturally, politically and geographically—so important in our Australian context? While this project now has networks in many countries around the world, its influence in Australia has been significant both in our application of its theoretical and practical ideas. The provocations they give us on the image of the child and the environment as the third teacher are now an embedded part of our own conversations about early learning.
What is it that this project offers to us in our local early learning context?
Crabs in a bucket
What do crabs in a bucket have in common with Leadership? More than you would think writes Karen Hope in this blog—which first featured on the ECA Leadership Program recently. Leadership is a constantly evolving concept and what fits in the corporate world isn’t always how it works in early childhood educational settings.
I often spend time talking about workplace culture and behaviour with early childhood educators. These types of conversations generally open up the floodgates to an avalanche of stories, anecdotes and narratives about a culture of bullying and harassment that exists in some early learning services today. This type of workplace culture makes it hard enough for you to turn up every day let alone influence neural pathway development in young children.
One of the questions that I ask educators is: ‘Do you know why you do not need to put a lid on a bucket of crabs if you go crabbing’?
This is the best explanation I have read.
Whats love got to do with it?
‘Half way down the stairs is a stair where I sit
There isn’t any other stair quite like it.
I’m not at the bottom; I’m not at the top
So this is the stair where I always stop’ (Milne, 1932, p147).
There are approximately 194 900 early learning staff currently employed across Australia, with long day care services employing over half of this workforce. The majority of the workforce is female. The median age of this workforce is 28 years for male workers and 34 years for female workers (Social Research Centre, 2017, p. vii). On 27 March 2018, there will be a nation-wide job walk off for Australia’s early childhood educators in a bid for pay equity. The myriad of service providers of early learning in Australia means this industrial action is a complicated scenario. Who will walk off the job and what type of services will they represent?
The competent educator
Being equitable does not mean we all get the same thing
Photography - A window into learning
Is it time to rethink professional development in early childhood setting? The ‘expert’ model might not be delivering much bang for our training buck.
Why is the health and wellbeing of early childhood educators important?
In relation to students I will
The documentation pilgrimage
Hair straighteners in the home corner. Is this what Froebel intended?
Hair straighteners in the home corner - part 2
The silent Teacher
8 ways to take care of yourself
The presence of a light box does not guarantee the possibility
Children - Where are their tribes?
Ministories- A way of making visible context, strategy and assessment
The digital space as a Piazza of participation