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Reggio Emilia's: The Loris Malaguzzi International Centre

The Loris Malaguzzi Centre is the 'centre' of the Reggio Emilia Approach to early childhood education. It houses the offices of 'Reggio Children', the Documentation and Educational Research centre of Preschools of the Muncipality of Reggio Emilia, ateliers, the Marco Gerra exhibition hall, the Annamaria and Marco Gerra auditorium, the facilities for professional development and research for teachers, researchers, and families, and for meetings and conferences, a preschool and primary school, and soon, a bookshop and restaurant.

The building, which used to be a cheese storage facility was designed by Tullio Zini and ZPZ Partners.

Marco Gerra Exhibition Hall - here showing the exhibition 'One City, Many children: Memory of a Present History', depicting a journey of the educational experience of Reggio Emilia, 'a story of rights conquered and constructed for and by the children'.

AnnaMaria and Marco Gerra Auditorium

Ateliers - since 2006 the spaces of the Ateliers has hosted the 'Ray of Light', a place of research and experimentation, whereby an environment of light in various forms can be investigated by means of explorations that provoke curiosity and wonder, and stimulate creativity.

Research and Innovation Space - houses innovative furnishings and objects for early childhood originating from research projects carried out with consultancy of Reggio Children. Emphasizing that the world of childhood need not be confined within education but should contribute to a new quality of life for children outside the educational institution. For example Reggio Children have participated in research studies with companies such as Alessi, Ikea, Isaff, Lego, Play+ and Sony, thus improving the way products are designed, and thus the quality of life for all.

The Document and Educational Research Centre, and finally;

The Reggio Emilia Preschool and Primary School

The school which was completed in 2008 houses 3 preschool classes and 2 primary school classrooms, is the flagship building of the organisation , as well as a resource for further research and development.

The learning spaces or "classrooms" are organised around am 'atelier' for undertaking messier creative work, a 'laboratory' for more scientific and technology-led studies and a 'piazza' for more performative and physical play and learning.

A mezzanine level within each classroom serves as a sleeping platform up in the roof eaves, taking children away from the hustle and bustle of the classroom below.

A series of steps within the classroom space create a suite of discrete learning spaces without physical barriers, whilst also providing seating for assemblies and a raised performance area.

Storage is not only extensive, but clearly integrated into the learning environment, with some functioning also as walls. Each child has their own carefully arranged places to store and present their work.

Via  The Wonder of Learning website and Imagine School Design.

For more info see the Loris Malaguzzi International Centre website or this issue of ReChild, which looks at the Centre’s activities, functions and imaginary features.


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