Our mission is for every child to experience the joy of learning.
Our Philosophy

Reggio Emilia is an approach to education based on a system of values and principles:

  • Image of the child as competent
  • Relationships and interactions as the basis of learning
  • The school environment as essential for fostering encounters, communication, and relationships
  • Parents as co-responsible partners
  • Teachers as researchers and partners in learning
  • Curriculum as a process of inviting and sustaining learning
  • Documentation as helping to determine the direction in which the work will proceed
  • The use of a wide range of high quality materials as an integral part of the cognitive and expressive process of learning
  • Project work as a reflection of the belief in revisiting and sustaining experiences

What does Reggio look like at ECDC?

“Reggio” is not a model to be copied, rather it is a philosophy to be studied. Each and every school that draws inspiration from Reggio is unique, based on the strengths, values, and needs of the community. At ECDC, we offer children the opportunity to play and learn together in a collaborative environment where educators support and guide children in their exploration and discovery. Children learn to be part of a classroom community, build social awareness, and develop kindergarten readiness skills. Our Reggio Emilia-inspired approach means that our content is targeted to the interests and wonderings of the learners in the classroom. This means we:

  • Prepare the classroom/environment to inspire curiosity
  • Introduce topics, themes, questions, conversations, and materials
  • Watch and listen carefully for children’s responses
  • Allow time to support and extend those responses
  • Document the learning process to ensure that important conversations and experiences can be revisited and extended
  • Invite dialogue with parents to support and extend learning
  • Invite parent feedback to support continual improvement
  • Strive to embed our core values in daily life and decision-making

How do we teach basic skills and prepare children for kindergarten?

The educators create organized environments that encourage children to explore and learn through well planned provocations and experiences.  The Pennsylvania Learning Standards for Early Childhood inform our practice but do not dictate our curriculum.  (Emergent curriculum allows educators to be responsive to the interests of the children.)  

Pennsylvania Learning Standards for Early Childhood serve as a resource to:

  • Support planning and implementation of curriculum and assessment.
  • Guide the selection of materials and learning experiences.
  • Assist in setting appropriate goals and expectations for the children.

What Are Our Core Values?

The Hebrew terms tie our common values to Jewish teachings and add meaning from which we can learn as a community.

  • Hachnasat Orchim – Welcoming
  • Kehillah – Community
  • Kavod – Respect
  • Tzedakah – Sharing
  • Simchat Limud – Joy of Learning