In today's rapidly changing world, early childhood education can provide young children with the opportunity to learn through play, exploration, discovery and preparing them for a lifetime of learning and growth. Preschool is one of the most important stages for a child's development.
The new edition of the course “The best for preschool teachers ” took place in Bologna from 23/04/2023 to 29/04/2024. The participants came from all across Europe, with Marina and Mirjana from Dječji vrtić Sunce Zadar in Croatia; Ann-Christin, Annica and Maria from Heby Kommun in Sweden; Ana Maria and Beatriz from CEIP Mata Linares in Spain; Vessela, Harpa, Sanja and Halla from Preschool Vinagerdi in Iceland; Katja and Branka from Vrtec "Otona Županiča" Slovenska Bistrica in Slovenia; Harald and Sojna from Mathilde-Weber- Schule in Germany.
The course began with a series of practical activities designed to help teachers break the ice, share their expectations and contributions, and discuss best practices related to preschool education. It was an opportunity for teachers to learn and inspire from each other and to gain a wider understanding of preschool education across Europe. Each of them could introduce their school and projects they implement for the children. It was for example very interesting to see how they incorporate the technology in different countries and preschools.
On Wednesday, we had the privilege of visiting an Italian Montessori preschool, which was an enlightening experience for all of us. It was fascinating to observe the nurturing and engaging environment that the children were learning and playing. In the Montessori method, the importance of their independence and creativity are brought in light. We were impressed by their ability to set their own lunch tables on a voluntary basis and their capacity for fast reflection of their actions.
The next day, we visited an outdoor preschool, where we observed children playing in the mud and witnessed the joy and excitement in their eyes as they learned. Accompanied by enthusiastic teachers, this experience highlighted the importance of exposing children to authentic and real-world experiences, and the positive impact it can have on their education and understanding of environmental preservation.
Finally, it was time for making dreams come true. The teachers and the course trainer headed to Reggio Emilia to visit the Loris Malaguzzi Centre where an expert guided the group throughout the wonderful exhibitions of the Centre. Teachers had a chance to learn more about the history, the materials, the projects and the experiences, which make the Reggio Emilia approach unique in the world.
The week came to an end and it was time for the teachers to come back home with a luggage full of memories and experiences.
Welcome to the ELA Blog. Here you will find articles and photos of our courses and have a look at the topics addressed during the week in Bologna, Palermo and Tenerife. You will also have the chance to take a peek at our projects and check out what we have been up to.