by Monica Snellings
Walking the halls of School Within School in Washington DC's Capitol Hill neighborhood I came across this beautiful display of student's summer journals. The school is a public, teacher-directed, Reggio Emilia inspired school. I met with Early Childhood Atelierista, Marla McLean, who's visual influence is found everywhere within the school.
During my quick visit I was able to witness 4 years old's creating their first observational paintings. Marla had the children go to the school garden where they picked vegetables and flowers. In the studio they then found paint colors that matched their objects and painted what they saw. When finished, they cleaned their brushes put the paint colors back on the shelf—like colors with like colors—and ran off to do some "engineering".
Read Marla's wonderful documentation of the process—as she says, "It is science, it is art, it is literacy, it is nutrition, but it is oh so much more."