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In this blog we are posting news from around the network, reflections on general news items and other broad-ranging items of interest. Current contributors are Sightlines Initiative directors Robin Duckett, Liz Elders, Debi Keyte Hartland and Chris Merrick.
We have a Library View (see left column) to help you find past articles.

Rocking the boat ...

"The hand that rocks the cradle needs to rock the boat."

Here in Reggio Emilia it is the first of a six-day discussion and reflection of the members of the Reggio Children International Network, with the officers and pedagogues of the city's early childhood services.

Karen Callaghan of the Reggio Network in Canada, suddenly recalled this motto of the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care, as we discussed the mood of the representatives.

As it turned out, the phrase was very apt for us, as we began to set to. We are all committed to constructing a strong education, which listens to the children - and we are passionate about informing the international community, politicians, parents, educators, all. It is a pedagogy of hope, as Claudia Giudici, President of Reggio Children reminded us, with this phrase of Paolo Freire's. 

Nando Rinaldi, the new president of the Institute of Schools and Preschools of Reggio, said thoughtfully and determinedly, "'knowledge' grows - it is not static or academic, it needs to be lived, it depends on all our participation."

Stubborn and Resolute

Loris Malaguzzi was stubborn and resolute in his vision, Claudia said -a typical person of Reggio Emilia. And in this room of 33 representatives, from 22 countries, there was much of this, We are ready not only to rock the 'boat', but to figure out how to build new ones.

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Questing and 'going beyond' ...

As Jerome Bruner died just a few days ago, I was revisiting a 2014 interview: "The main point of teaching and educating" says Bruner, " is to get them [children, learners] to think and share about their notions of 'where this leads'; to go beyond the information given …"

Jerome Bruner (Jerry to friends),  dedicated psychologist  was fascinated by the dynamic, optimistic processes of human learning, and overjoyed when he first encountered the work and qualities of the preschools of Reggio Emilia some 20 years ago.

Ken Robinson, in a 2013 presentation which happened to be sitting right next to this Youtube recording, also insists: "education is a human system."

They both talk about 'rules of learning': they are principles which we certainly agree with - I think you'll also agree when you listen to them: they are important friends for us to have. 

Here they are: get ready for a good dose of  clarity and optimism:

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Sightlines' Network Events - Summer 2016

Susan Isaacs .... Loris Malaguzzi

Dear Foundation Stage and Primary educators, 

The London group invites you to their discussion and development events, and there is an exciting proposal to begin a new network group - or two - in the West Midlands. 

The work of the network groups has been very buoyant since the Networks Showcase Day in March, which really showed what can be achieved through the mix of optimism, determination and vision. 

All the May and June meetings are open events -  the groups are keen for new participation, so if you are interested in developing creative reflective practice in early childhood and primary education do come along.

Details are in the 2016 event listings and in the Networks pages.

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Robin Duckett
These meetings are proving very popular - and rewardingly inspirational! There was a waiting list to attend the London meeting la... Read More
Friday, 10 June 2016 10:52
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