Reggio Emilia Educational Philosophy

We are inspired by the Reggio Emilia approach to education. 

Reggio Emilia Educational Philosophy

Reggio Emilia Educational Philosophy

The Reggio Emilia approach is focused on early childhood and primary education, believing in the importance of foundation skills at the early stages of child development. This philosophy is based on the image of the child; it values every student as a strong, capable, and resilient individual, full of wonder and knowledge. It emphasises the innate curiosity of children and aims to assist them with an understanding of who they are in the world around them.


The approach promotes the principles of respect, responsibility, and community building in a relationship-driven environment. These principles align with Smart Innovations School values and beliefs.

The Child

  • The Reggio Emilia philosophy values the child as central to their own learning, not simply an empty vessel waiting to be filled with knowledge. Children can pursue their own interests, revisit, and build upon ideas at their own pace.
  • The ‘100 languages of children’ concept recognises that children have multiple ways of thinking, playing, exploring, speaking, and doing. The Reggio Emilia approach encourages children to use every tool they have to express themselves.
  • We value each child by recognising their individual abilities and providing opportunities to co-construct their knowledge in collaboration with one another using their imagination, sense of wonder, and learning experiences. We celebrate the uniqueness of every child.

The Environment

  • A Reggio-inspired environment is often referred to as ‘the third teacher’. It enables uninterrupted exploration, play, and learning for young students. Outdoor spaces are valued just as highly as formal classrooms, and the design of the space should allow children to move freely between the two. Classrooms use natural furnishing to encourage real-life interactions. In addition, it is important that children have free access to stimulating resources.
  • We create an environment that allows children to explore and wonder, question and problem solve, offer ideas, hypothesise, and formulate theories in collaboration with one another and their teachers.

The Teacher

  • In Reggio inspired schools, teachers are encouraged to observe children rather than to direct them. It is important that children can experiment in their own way, make mistakes, and find new solutions. Teachers are expected to be the ones who guide experiences, open-ended discovery, and problem-solving. The role of the teacher is to gently move students towards areas of their interest. This is done through teacher training on observation, questioning, and listening for opportunities that present themselves for encouraging further exploration of student interests.
  • Teachers guide students through their learning journeys, supporting them every step of the way of the learning process, through enquiry and collaboration. Our teachers apply some of the best teaching practices that are based on the latest educational research enabling teachers to recognise every child’s unique potential.
Art teacher teaching elementary school pupils using crayons and coloured pencils at SIS international school.