As we look to incorporate more elements of the Reggio Emilia approach into Carys’ “education” (which I feel I must put in inverted commas because we’re not really “teaching” her much), one of the things I’m very keen to understand is how well it fits with the approach to parenting more generally that has been working very well for us.
On the face of it the fit seems to be a very natural one, because both define themselves as being grounded in respect.
Respect in RIE:
“Respect is the basis of the RIE philosophy” (from RIE.org)
Respect in Reggio Emilia is often described in terms of children’s place in society:
“One cannot have ideas about the first people [the adults] in the community without having ideas about the rights of the last people [the children]” – Mayor Luca Vecchi
“We recognize the rights not of a citizen of the future, but as citizens of today” – Carla Rinaldi (Pedagogical Coordinator and President of Reggio Children); both quotes from presentations to the April 2016 Study Group
Yet when we actually dive in a bit further, we see that this notion of respect plays out very differently in the two approaches.