Between October 2020 and March 2021 we commissioned Sightlines Initiative, the UK reference agency for Reggio Emilia, to host 4 seminars, and 4 follow up ‘huddles’ with teachers form each of the 9 partner schools. Sessions focussed on the core principles of Reggio Emilia’s practice in infant and toddler settings, the work of Sightlines Initiative, and provocations for teachers to explore Reggio practice in their own settings, bringing reflections back to the wider group.
The sessions were attended by a core group of 8 teachers, with 17 teachers attending the sessions in total.
Key successes were the continued attendance form a core group of teachers across all sessions, the collaborative, peer supported, format of the sessions, and the opportunity to ‘do’ outside of sessions, to report back, and to share reflections together. From simple start, middle and end point questionnaires we were able to see self-reported improvements in the teacher’s confidence in arts based delivery, child-led practice, working with artists and most markedly, confidence in knowledge
of the Reggio Emilia approaches to education. The only area that moved down was the teacher’s rating of their own professional support network, start 7.5, end 7 out of 10. The most successful moments noted were the provocations around materials exploration, as all schools seemed to gather a rich reflection on how their students work, and how they could bring in more of these approaches in future, as well as finding some clear common ground across all 9 schools.
A legacy of the sessions will be the development of a Teacher’s JPD working group entitled ‘Community of Learning’ alongside a resource page capturing recorded sessions, documentation and presentations from the 8 sessions.