Psychology, Department of


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Edwards, C.P. "Caregiving through a relationship lens," and Doherty, A. "The relational rights of children in our care." (2004) In J. Hendrick (Ed.), Next steps toward teaching the Reggio way: Accepting the challenge to change (pp. 114-134). Upper Saddle River,NJ: Merrill.


In recent years developmental scientists have described the tasks of relationship-building that contribute to early development: security and attachment, self-recognition and validation, mutuality and companionship, passionate experience, identification and group belonging, and giving care to others. Relationship-building begins within the family, then, in extending it outside the family, early education can play a key role. This selection contains two parts. The first piece describes the kinds of benefits these widening relationships can provide for very young children and outlines some specific steps that educators in Reggio Emilia, Italy, have taken to ensure the best, most "amiable" environments. The second piece, written by Alex Doherty in collaboration with Carolyn Edwards, applies the relationship framework to a context in Canada, a laboratory school for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers in a small community college in dialogue with Reggio Emilia educators and their approach.