Reggio Emilia Philosophy
Each child is seen as a unique explorer and learner that should be given the freedom to learn through discovery and play. Our role as instructors is to provide opportunities for inquiry, thought, investigation, exploration, play, learning, and growth. Our preschool is designed to meet each child's learning path through a variety of experiences, such as experiential play, gardening, art, music, yoga, language exploration, creative thinking, and more. Our classroom environment is a safe, caring, and comfortable place for children to carry out their explorations and to engage in meaningful play. By providing children with a stimulating learning environment, children are encouraged to explore and develop an affinity for learning.
At With Our Own Two Hands, the environment is seen as an important teacher in the child's educational experience. Through nature-based play and outdoor exploration, children are encouraged to engage in the world around them and develop a respect for all life. Outdoor play time and physical activity is a significant part of our program. Children are encouraged to partake in cooperative games, to be physically active, and to get their hands full of dirt in our garden. Our beautiful garden is a peaceful place full of life. Children will have the opportunity to learn gardening skills and grow their own flowers, fruits, herbs, and vegetables to take home. Our garden is filled with opportunities to forage, nibble little bits of bliss here and there, tuck in seedlings, get dirty, and make friends with the birds and worms that share our outdoor space.
Art plays a significant role in our preschool and we provide children with many modes of expression, such as photography, painting, dramatic play, dance, music, poetry, drawing, sculpting, nature-based art, and more. Art techniques are taught and children are provided with extensive art supplies and opportunities to realize their artistic ideas and express what they are learning. Children are also encouraged to engage in collaborative artwork with their classmates through murals and large on-going projects.
We believe in the importance of community and relationship with others. Research has shown that children thrive in an environment of close and caring relationships. At our preschool, instructors and children work to create a community of friendship, kindness, and acceptance among each other. Each child is accepted and valued and treated with kindness and care. Compassion and empathy are encouraged in all interactions and are the pillar of our program.
We believe in treating the environment with care and running our learning centre in the most sustainable and eco-friendly way that we can. Gardening is a big component of our program and so is working with recycled materials, composting, using eco-friendly products, reducing waste, and everything that we can do to make our footprint smaller and encourage an appreciation for the environment. It is our hope that children will learn from a young age to become aware of their impact on the environment and develop a closeness to and respect for nature and life. Some of the projects that we will partake in include making eco-friendly soaps, creating toys out of recycled materials, building bird feeders, making fruits jams to eat, and more.
Set in the close-knit community of Steveston Village, our location allows for field trips to visit local fishermen at the Fishermen's Wharf, observe the eagles, swans, birds, and fish that share a home by the Fraser River, enjoy the very fun playground at Steveston Park, fly a kite and dig in the sandy beaches of Garry Point, make visits to art galleries, and much much more! Steveston Village is a place where everyone receives a friendly welcome and children have the chance to be a part of this warm and historic community at With Our Own Two Hands.