Our Beginnings

In the spring of 2014, several women who knew one another from their work at Marygrove College formed Connecting Through the Arts & Education, a nonprofit organization whose purpose is to bring diverse families together around an interest in child centered, inquiry based education. A preschool, Scuola Creativa, opened in the fall of 2014 in Ferndale, Michigan, with one classroom serving children ages three through five. In the spring of 2018, Scuola Creativa moved to the current location in Royal Oak, Michigan, and expanded to include a preschool classroom for children ages three through five and an infant-toddler classroom for children ages birth to three.


Inspired by the Reggio Emilia approach to education, Scuola Creativa partners with children, families, and the community to provide an inquiry-based education for young learners. Scuola Creativa upholds an image of the child as a powerful, competent, capable, and integral member of the community. We envision each family as unique, deserving of respect, and the center of the child’s life. Scuola Creativa has a vision for a just and civil society that values our shared humanity, fosters strong democratic communities, recognizes the uniqueness of each individual and appreciates diversity. We acknowledge children’s ability to reflect upon and contribute to their own learning through their many languages of expression and communication. Our vision is to base all decisions on the principles of Reggio Emilia, incorporating current research on learning as well as developmentally appropriate practice.

Core Values

  • Image of the child as competent, curious, full of knowledge and potential, with a great capacity for experiencing the world

  • Image of the teacher as researcher, documenter, and life-long learner. Check out research from Scuola teachers here and here

  • Classroom environment as the "third teacher," set thoughtfully and intended to teach

  • Curriculum is inquiry-based, process-oriented & driven by the children's interests

  • Time outdoors, in all kinds of weather, offers valuable learning opportunities

  • Cooperation and collaboration among staff, with families and children

  • Children, families and staff are all deserving of respect and have rights

  • Diversity (in every sense of the word) makes for a richer learning environment

  • Anti-Bias Education and self-reflection are critical to our individual/collective growth. Learn more about Anti-Bias Education here.

  • Continuity of care from infancy/toddler years through preschool


At Scuola Creativa, we work with families to create a lifetime of healthy relationships with food. Lunch is prepared each day in our fully licensed kitchen with a focus on fresh, whole ingredients including protein, whole grains, fruits and vegetables. The ritual of sharing meals with friends and teachers builds community and encourages tasting new foods. Special dietary needs are taken into account whenever possible to ensure the health and safety of all children.