World renowned educators Cathy and Lella join us to share stories from their new book Beautiful Stuff from Nature. Coming from schools and teachers across North America, stories tell of children and teachers exploring nature together. Each features local environments, natural materials and ordinary experience made extraordinary through images, quotes and reflections.
"Through their explorations, collections, creations, displays, and stories, children discover the beauty and variety in their own small piece of the planet."
Cathy Weisman Topal is a research associate at Smith College. For over 35 years Cathy has been a lecturer in the Department of Education and Child Studies at Smith as well as the studio art teacher at the Centre for Early Childhood Education and the Campus School of Smith College. Cathy is the author of several books and visual arts curricula, including Children, Clay and Sculpture; Children and Painting; Beautiful Stuff; Learning with Found Materials; Thinking with a Line; Explorations in Art; Kindergarten; and Creative Minds Out of School. Cathy recently created an interactive website for early childhood teachers- www.thinkingwithaline.com. Cathy is a frequent speaker and workshop facilitator in the U.S. and abroad.
Lella Gandini is the associate editor of the journal Innovations in Education: The International Reggio Exchange. She has conducted research and held faculty positions at the University of Massachusetts, Smith College, and is a visiting scholar at Lesley University. She has led a professional development sessions, lectures, and workshops and has coproduced videos, articles, and interviews on the Reggio Emilia approach. She has published or coedited several books in Italy and the U.S., including The Hundred Languages of Children: The Reggio Emilia Approach to Early Childhood Education, Beautiful Stuff, In the Spirit of the Studio; Learning from the Atelier of Reggio Emilia, Bambini: The Italian Approach to Infant/Toddler Care, and many others. Her curatorial and editorial work has been widely published.