Thursday, 1 March 2012

The Hundred Languages of Children

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 a, of speaking
A hundred always a hundred ways of listening of marvelling of loving
A hundred joys for singing and understanding
A hundred worlds to discover, 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 more)
but they steal ninety-nine.
The school and the culture separate the head from the body.
The 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 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, translated by Lella Gandini
from "The Hundred Languages of Children, copyright pre-schools and infant-toddler centres-instituzone of the Municipality of Reggio Emilia, Italy. Published y Reggio Children, 1996. Reproduced by kind permission of Reggio Children.

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