Sightlines Initiative

promoting creative and reflective practice in early childhood education


Reggio Study Weeks & other CPD

Reggio Approach E-Learning

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The Women and the Schools of Reggio Emilia

Bicycles & Bricks, Vision & Determination ~

Online Conference set:  narratives of the real and possible in shaping education

Seminar Three: The Women and the Schools of Reggio Emilia

Professor Sabine Lingenauber & Janina L. von Niebelschütz, University of Fulda, Germany

reggio emilia video teaser 01the image hyperlinks to an online video extract from the video'd interviewsFilmed interviews with the local Reggiane women of the 1940s whose dedication and passion drove the evolution of Reggio Emilia's preschools of today.

You know the Reggio pedagogy as a pedagogical approach. But do you also know the history and the women’s contribution?

Discover the fascinating genesis of the “scuole dell’infanzia”.
Get ready for the female witnesses and for brand new insights!

From 1943 to 1973, thousands of women in Reggio Emilia struggled collectively for day nurseries and nursery schools. They did so as partisans, activists, and politicians, together with male and female citizens. Women activists of various generations were united by values, goals, and friendships. Some leading figures continued the struggle as municipal, provincial, and regional councillors, or as members of the national parliament. These women translated their values into decisions and actions, thus helping the establishment and spread of day nurseries and nursery schools in Reggio Emilia.

Sabine LJustine vN

We present research results and video interviews of some of these remarkable women. 

Professor Sabine Lingenauber & Janina L. von Niebelschütz, of the University of Fulda, Germany, dedicated three years to the research, interviewing and presentation of these strong and dedicated experiences. The third part of their video publication is due out in 2021, and can be found on teir website The Women of Reggio

2016 project 1

These are times of possibility. Amidst calls and demands to ‘return to normal’ there are also many who have lost patience with the ‘old normal’ or have seen that other ways of living and learning are indeed preferable. Multitudes of educators, head teachers, parents and advocates are striving to protect and also develop possibilities for educational experiences with children’s rights, wellbeing and proclivities for natural enquiry at the heart.  

This online conference set of seminars is designed to nourish all those who are actively promoting and creating these ‘visions of the possible.'


The core frame of reference in these seminars is work of the preschools of Reggio Emilia, Italy.   2020 is the centenary of Loris Malaguzzi’s birthday, the pedagogical teacher, psychologist and civic campaigner who worked closely throughout his life with Reggio Emilia’s emerging preschool services between 1945 - 95. Reggio’s preschools continue to be a tirelessly evolving example of an embodied vision for the future. 

We are also showcasing selected innovative educational experiences from other countries. We will consider these alternatives, in order to learn and ally with their experiences as we forge a new education for our children. 

The series culminates in a panel discussion with Peter Moss and others to consider the questions and possibilities that these generate, and the principles and directions which they imply for us. "

women's resistance 1944
building the preschool 1946 2

" It is the spring of 1945.
I hear that in a small village called Villa Cella, a few miles away from the town of Reggio Emilia, people decided to build and run a school for young children. That idea seems incredible to me! I rush there on my bike – I find women intent upon salvaging and washing pieces of brick …you have to agree that seeing an army tank, six horses and three trucks generating a school for young children is extra-ordinary. … [Reggio Emilia's] valuable (and continuing) history confirms that a new educational experience can emerge from the least expected circumstances. "
Loris Malaguzzi

the truck of the people LM summer fresco

Communicate with presenters prior to the presentations: When you register you will be given a link to write about your interests, foci, wishes, questions.

If you register before Friday 18th December these will be submitted to the various presenters. This will be helpful to them in honing their presentations and give them a sense of connection with you and your interests.

Dates, Details & Booking

Date Tuesday 26th January 2021
Price £40
Member Discount 10%

Professor Sabine Lingenauber & Janina L. von Niebelschütz, University of Fulda, Germany

Please Note:

  • Recorded sessions: to support the participation of registrants in other time zones, we will be making recordings of the sessions available to registrants for a period of four days subsequent to the presentation.
  • Times 4 - 5.30pm

    We are no longer accepting registration for this event