Reggio Emilia Approach Analysis

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Critical reflection on two approaches – Reggio Emilia Approach and Forest School Approach
Reggio Emilia Approach
Reggio Emilia Approach is an educational philosophy which considers children as capable, innovative and curious learners with intrinsic motivations in learning about the unknowns surrounding them (Mitchell and Carroll, 2003). It aimed to promote children’s learning through the development of “the hundred languages” of children (Edwards, Gandini and Forma, 2012).
Learning spaces, social exchanges, projects, art materials, documentation and collaborative teaching style are the core values of the Approach (Mitchell and Carroll, 2003). In this approach, spaces involved in students’ daily lives were considered as extensions
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In language and communication aspect, as students were allowed to explore fun in the nature, to share their ideas to peers on the issues they came across and to communicate during their imaginary play (O’Brien and Murray, 2006). The frequent use of language, especially descriptive languages, enhanced children’s language development, especially in the enrichment of vocabularies (O’Brien and Murray, 2006). Children were encouraged to experience the woodland with all senses, which prompted their developmental progress in language and communication (O’Brien and Murray, 2006). In motivation and concentration aspect, the child-centered approach develops the curriculum based on children’s interests, which provided motivations for learning (Bredekamp, Knuth, Kuresh and Shulman, 1992). Learning in the woodland was child-initiated, imaginative and exploratory with no set limitations on learning. Consequently, children would be keen on participating in the exploration and learning of a novel environment (Bredekamp, 1992). With interests, children would be able to stay focus and concentrated for a longer period of time (O’Brien and Murray, 2006). Children were basically physically active when they were in the woodland, which aided their development in gross motor and fine motor skills (O’Brien and Murray, 2006). Forest kindergarten offered numerous physical activities, such as climbing trees and balancing on trunks that prompted the strengthening in gross motor skills; handling tools to cut off branches and grabbing ropes to climb up a slope that promoted the development in fine motor
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