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The Hundred Languages

The child is made of one hundred.
The child has
a hundred languages
a hundred hands
a hundred thoughts
a hundred ways of thinking
of playing, of speaking.

A hundred.

Always a hundred
ways of listening
of marveling, of loving
a hundred joys
for singing and understanding
a hundred worlds
to discover
a hundred worlds
to invent
a hundred worlds
to dream.

The child has
a hundred languages
(and a hundred hundred hundred more)
but they steal ninety-nine.
The school and the culture
separate the head from the body.
They tell the child:
to think without hands
to do without head
to listen and not to speak
to understand without joy
to love and to marvel
only at Easter and at Christmas.

They tell the child:
to discover the world already there
and of the hundred
they steal ninety-nine.

They tell the child:
that work and play
reality and fantasy
science and imagination
sky and earth
reason and dream
are things
that do not belong together.

And thus they tell the child
that the hundred is not there.
The child says:
No way. The hundred is there.

-Loris Malaguzzi
Founder of the Reggio Emilia Approach

Reggio by far has been one of my favorite progressive genres.  I love that it serves as a model for reflecting the children and community into its methods.  Respectful relationships, beautiful environments, and child centered practices are just a couple things that sell me on this genre of education.  The above poem sums up a lot of what is crucial for every child on a daily basis.  Children deserve to be heard and it is all to often that their needs and desires are neglected for an adult agenda.  When is the last time you let a child share one of their hundred languages?

For more Reggio resources check out:

http://www.reggiochildren.it/identita/reggio-emilia-approach/?lang=en

http://reggioalliance.org/

http://www.amazon.com/Working-Reggio-Way-Beginners-American-ebook/dp/B00G8O9NFK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1411279979&sr=8-1&keywords=reggio

http://www.amazon.com/Bringing-Reggio-Emilia-Home-Innovative/dp/0807736600/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1411279979&sr=8-6&keywords=reggio

http://www.amazon.com/Spirit-Studio-Learning-Childhood-Education/dp/080774591X/ref=sr_1_10?ie=UTF8&qid=1411279979&sr=8-10&keywords=reggio

http://www.branchesatelier.com/

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