The best for preschool teachers: Reggio Emilia Approach, Montessori method, Outdoor Education and much more

From the Reggio Emilia Approach to Outdoor Education, from the Montessori Method to Non Formal Education. The world of early childhood and preschool education is in constant development and for preschool teachers is crucial to keep up with the new trends and stay on top of what's current. This training course for preschool teachers will be a springboard for exploring the main principles, features and benefits of the best preschool approaches. Joining this training course, preschool teachers will have the chance to explore the growing trends in preschool education and will learn in a practical and experiential way which the activities and approaches are most suited for their purposes. Teachers will learn how to design their own activities based on the needs and realities of their pupils as well as learning and practicing outdoor activities, learning games and concrete ideas to foster preschool pupils creativity and learning.

This course provides participants with an overview on the most innovative teaching and pedagogy approaches for preschool education by providing a analytical as well as a practical, cooperative, inspirational and stimulating space where to get to know, learn, experiment and practice new ideas, activities, strategies and methods.
The general aim of this teacher training course is to foster excellence and innovation in preschool and early childhood education by empowering and inspiring preschool teachers and directors to discover the most effective approaches while sharing best practices and experiences with fellow participants and educators throughout all Europe gaining as well a broader understanding of preschool education in Europe.
Thanks to this training course the participants will:
- Get acquainted with the new trends and most effective approach in early childhood and preschool education
- Learn about the key principles of the Montessori Method and Loris Malaguzzi’s Reggio Emilia Approach;
- Discover the benefits of embedding nature and biodiversity in preschool activities;
- Experience and practice inspirational outdoor education activities;
- Learn how to design, prepare and deliver interactive Non-Formal Education learning activities and games;
- Get to know and experiment learning games and activities to stimulate early years children creativity and social development;
- Exchange best practices and share experiences about preschool education with teachers and education staff coming throughout Europe;
- Visit Italian preschools and kindergartens and network with individuals and institutions working in preschool education.

This course is open to: teachers, directors, managers, educators and other staff of preschool, kindergarten and early childhood institutions.

Please find below the standard indicative daily programme that will be personalized on participants needs and professional profiles.
Our standard programme comprises 7 days, of which the first one is dedicated to networking, preparation and cultural immersion and the last one to follow up, specific needs and cultural activities. Please note that we always do our best to accommodate the specific needs of our participants in a flexible way, including but not limited to budget restrictions and travel arrangements. Participants can choose to arrive 1 day before the start of the course and/or leave 1 day after the end of it in order to enjoy a deeper cultural immersion. Upon specific request we can organize longer or shorter version of this course.
Day 1
- Participants arrival
- Individual orientation and information about the venue and the city
- Networking activities
- Guided visit in Bologna
- Welcome dinner
Day 2
- Course introduction
- Teambuilding activities
- Competences ex-ante evaluation
- Reflections on current teaching practices and styles
- Introductoin to experential learning and Kolb’s learning cyle
- The key principles of non-formal education
- How to foster students’ independence, creativity and critical thinking through non-formal, informal and experiential learning activities
- Practicing, designing and delivering non-formal activities and preschool games
Day 3
- Non-Formal activities to strengthen teamwork, effective cooperation and respect
- Learning and performing speaking and role-play games
- Practicing, designing and delivering non-formal activities and preschool games
- Visit to a local preschool/kindergarten
- Cultural activities in Bologna and traditional Italian aperitif
Day 4
- Introduction to the Montessori Method
- A constructivist model, learning concepts from working with materials, rather than by direct instruction
- Visit to a Montessori preschool
- Questions and discussion with local teachers working in the Montessori preschool
- Guided visit in Florence (optional)
Day 5
- Key principles and benefits about outdoor education and outdoor learning
- The value of outdoor education for personal, social and relational development
- How to safely design, plan and deliver outdoor preschool education activities
- Practicing, designing and delivering outdoor group exercises and challenges, problem solving games and experiential activities in the nature
Day 6
- Introduction to the Reggio-Emilia Approach
- Learning through experiences of touching, moving, listening, and observing
- Providing preschool pupils endless ways and opportunities to express themselves
- Visit to Reggio-Emilia and the Reggio Children - Loris Malaguzzi Center International Foundation
- Introduction to Design Thinking
- Designing a learning activity that incorporates the knowledge acquired through a Design Thinking process
- Presentation in plenary, feedback and discussion
- Dinner in traditional Italian restaurant
Day 7
- Exchange of best practices and experiences and space for discussion of future cooperation
- Course roundup and final evaluation
- Validation of learning outcomes and certification ceremony
- Additional training session tailored to specific needs (optional)
- Cultural activities or additional guided visit in another major Italian city (optional)
- Participants departure

We tailor the working methods based upon participants’ needs, attitudes and professional profiles in order to ensure high productivity, effectiveness and transferability into practice.
The standard methodology is highly practical and participative with hands-on approach that comprises real-job examples, case studies examination and simulations. We embrace collaboratively working methods that foster mutual learning and cooperation among participants. Our focus is on learning outside the classroom in an interactive and international environment. The pedagogical methods that we use are based upon experiential training, group and peer activities, learning-by-doing and best practices’ exchange.
Non-formal education working methods and tools will be used throughout the course creating a productive and inspiring environment and giving the participants will have the opportunity to experience what non-formal learning is. Every day the participants will be engaged in design and delivering small non-formal activities such as team-building activities, theatrical exercise, simulations, roleplaying and team games, problem solving and cooperative challenge, interactive workshops, brainstorming sessions, outdoor activities, ….
Free time has been planned to give to the participants time to assimilate the concepts, develop further the group activities, ask trainers for further clarifications, etc. Networking and cooperation among participants will be supported and stimulated at each stage.
We organize optional social, networking and cultural activities in order to give participants the opportunity to know Italy as well as to exchange best-practice and establish professional cooperation and links.
The training and staff team is multinational thus giving a full European dimension to the course.
The class-based course is completed by the support of the E-learning portal that is a great support both before and after the course in Italy.

You can find below the sessions planned. If none of these dates suits you please mind that we may organize an additional session ad-hoc for your school if there are at least 6 participants interested so feel welcome to contact us at to let us know about your needs. When adding an ad-hoc session we may be able to organize it in your language.
Bologna, Italy
31.05.2020 - 06.06.2020
01.11.2020 - 07.11.2020
28.02.2021 - 06.03.2021
06.06.2021 - 12.06.2021
31.10.2021 - 06.11.2021

Course fee: EUR 490 per participant
Support fee: EUR 200 per participant covering personal and cultural support, dissemination activities and production of a sum-up video, support in the validation and certification process, all coffee breaks and organization of two walk tour in the city where course is taking place
Accommodation and meals fee: depending on the participants’ requests
Course fee, support fee and accommodation fee are both mandatory

Teachers, trainers, headmasters and any other staff of education organizations are eligible to receive an Erasmus+ grant covering all the costs including travel, board and lodging, cultural activities and all fees. Our training courses are tailored to be fully funded by Erasmus+ and are available in different options to ensure that the Erasmus+ grant will be sufficient.

The most common option that we offer to schools and organizations costs EUR 1220 and includes course fee, support fee, accommodation in single room, all coffee breaks, 3 meals per day, walking tour in the venue’s city and local transport during the course. Based on your preferences and budget you can request different services, a less inclusive/cheaper option or you can choose to organize the board and lodging by yourself and opt to just attend the training course.

At the end of the course, each participant will be awarded a certificate of attendance, together - if requested - with the Europass Mobility Certificate.
We support the participants in every step of certification an d validation of learning outcomes with specific focus on European instruments and Erasmus plus requirements such as staff mobility/learning agreement, quality commitment and Europass mobility certificate.
We experienced that schools and education organizations may require additional documents to certify the competences learned or the presence in the training course. Upon detailed request we can provide those documents as well as we provide photos of the training course and a sum-up video that can be used for visibility and dissemination purposes.

ELA (Erasmus Learning Academy), is a training centre that focus on designing and implementing learning training courses for teachers, education staff and students with the support of European programmes, especially Erasmus plus. ELA has been created by IFOM director Francesco Tarantino and is in charge of managing the initiative formerly managed by IFOM. IFOM keeps focusing on work-based experiences for students and graduates. ELA focuses on designing and implementing international training courses and learning mobility for teachers and education staff.
ELA offers a range of innovative and practice-driven courses tailored for educators, especially teachers. Our focus is on learning outside the classroom in a cooperative and international environment. The pedagogical methods that we use are based upon experiential training, learning-by-doing and best practices’ exchange.
We work as a hub and a network in the Italian territory where we cooperate with public institutions, schools of all levels, VET centres, universities, adult education providers and other formal and non-formal education institutions. Our main headquarter is in Bologna, where most of our courses take place, and we organize as well several courses in Sicily and in Tenerife. Feel welcome to read more about our locations and about the courses for teachers and educational staff that we organize.
We holds extensive experience in organizing international training courses for teachers, headmasters and educational staff. In particular since 2011 we organize our courses with the support of European Union funds and in the last 5 years we’ve successfully received and trained over 2500 teachers and education staff coming from all over Europe, as you can read from the reviews at or on School Education Gateway. Past participants appreciated our interactive and hands-on approach focused on practice and experiential training and our support in project implementation, practical arrangements, certification and dissemination. As partner, we bring a strong added value to an Erasmus plus project thanks to:
- Our experience in more than 200 Erasmus+ projects
- Our international activity and presence (e.g. eTwinnig, SEG, EPALE…)
- Our involvement as stakeholder in EC initiatives and networks
- Our dissemination and visibility capacity and support
We work in the education sector since more than 10 years, thus we know the real context, the challenges that teachers are facing every day. We regularly participate in international training and European conference to keep our know-how up-to-date. We’re experience in tailoring our courses to the participants needs and profiles thus enhancing personal and professional development.
We’ve experience in providing linguistic, pedagogical and cultural preparation before the mobility as well as support and assistance after. We know how support and guide participants providing clear and comprehensive information before the courses and making them feel comfortable and safe.
We have successfully organized board and lodging as well as social activities and cultural visits for thousands of teachers and learners that came to Italy for learning purposes.
We’ve experience in ensuring continuous monitoring and evaluation and in the assessment, recognition and validation of learning outcomes through various European tools (i.e. Europass, ECVET, …).

We comply to the 10 principles set in the European Quality Charter for Mobility:
- Information and guidance: we provide every participant with access to clear and reliable sources of information and guidance on mobility and the conditions in which it can be taken up, including details of the Charter and the roles of sending and hosting organisations
- Learning plan: we draw up a learning plan describing the objectives and expected outcomes, the means of achieving them and the evaluation measures, taking account of reintegration issues
- Personalisation: we tailor the mobility based on participants’ needs and we ensure that the training course fits in with personal learning pathways, skills and motivation of participants and develops or supplements them
- General preparation: before departure, we can provide participants with general preparation tailored to their specific needs and covering linguistic, pedagogical, legal, cultural and financial aspects
- Linguistic aspects: we support the participants both before, during and after the course, we speak 10 languages do we can fully support the participants form the linguistic point of view
- Logistical support: our venues are easily accessible and based on our vast experience in mobility projects we provide detailed information and assistance concerning travel arrangements, insurance, the portability of government grants and loans, residence or work permits, social security and any other practical aspects
- Mentoring: we provide continuous mentoring to advise and help participants before, throughout and after their stay
- Recognition: we’ve vast experience in recognition of learning outcomes and we assist participants and sending organizations in the recognition and certification process including the issuing of the Europass mobility certificate
- Reintegration and evaluation: during the training we run daily evaluations as well as a final evaluation to monitor and assess all aspects of the training courses and ensure its quality, when appropriate we run an ex-ante and ex-post evaluation to assess the learning outcomes and the competences acquired, after the training we support participants in order to enhance their reintegration
- Commitments and responsibilities: we draw up and sign with the participant a learning agreement and quality commitment and we monitor that the training course comply with these standards

In addition we follow the best practices identified by the IQAIST network:
- Innovative, modern and practice-driven content
- Practical, participative and hands-on methodology
- Tailored programme based on actual professional needs
- Knowledge applicable to the real contexts and/or in the classroom
- Collaborative learning and best practices’ exchange
- European added value and exchange of best practices between countries
- Attention to personal growth and development
- Needs assessment before the training
- Distance learning support before and after the training
- Continuous monitoring and evaluation after the training
- Validation and certification of competences
- Clear communication, practical information and guidance
- Full support, commitment and responsibility
- Easy accessibility
- Flexibility
- Cultural immersion and social activities

The course is held in English. For groups with at least 8 participants, we can organize an ad-hoc session in a different language.
Please write an email to to get more information about it.

ELA (formerly IFOM)
Bologna, Italien

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Die nächsten Sitzungen

01.11.2020 > 07.11.2020 (ID: 85405)
28.02.2021 > 06.03.2021 (ID: 122848)
06.06.2021 > 12.06.2021 (ID: 122850)
31.10.2021 > 06.11.2021 (ID: 122849)

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Bewertungen können nur von verifizierten Kursteilnehmerinnen und -teilnehmern über das Mobility Tool+ der Europäischen Kommission erstellt werden. Wenn Sie an diesem Kurs teilgenommen haben, nutzen Sie zur Bewertung bitte das Mobility Tool+. Sollte der Kurs noch nicht im Mobility Tool+ aufgeführt sein, wenden Sie sich mit folgender Kurs-ID an Ihren Projektkoordinator:Bewertungen können nur von verifizierten Kursteilnehmerinnen und -teilnehmern über das Mobility Tool+ der Europäischen Kommission erstellt werden. Wenn Sie an diesem Kurs teilgenommen haben, nutzen Sie zur Bewertung bitte das Mobility Tool+. Sollte der Kurs noch nicht im Mobility Tool+ aufgeführt sein, wenden Sie sich mit folgender Kurs-ID an Ihren Projektkoordinator: 85403.

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ELA (formerly IFOM)
ELA (formerly IFOM)
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