Article Type Making Art Together Making Art Together Categories Theory and Resources

The Teacher as Researcher

Diana MacKenzie

It’s the end of July and we’re in the thick of summer programs for children here at The Carle. It’s always a lot of fun to think of new ideas for classes; selecting art materials, choosing picture books to read, and art work to visit in the galleries. 

Children remind me to look beyond what’s right in front of me, wonder how and why, and imagine a world of endless possibilities. My job is to listen to their questions and encourage their discoveries.


Below is a wonderful quote from the article “The Teacher as Researcher” by Carlina Rinaldi where she sums up the joys of working with children:

All children are intelligent, different from each other and unpredictable. If we know how to listen to them, children can give back to us the pleasure of amazement, of marvel, of doubt…the pleasure of “why.” Children can give us the strength of doubt and the courage of error. They can transmit to us the joy of searching and researching…the value of research, as an openness to others and toward everything new that is produced by the encounter with others.”

Carlina’s full article can be found on p.3 of Innovations in Early Education: the International Reggio Exchange, Spring ‘03 issue.

What does this quote mean to you? Share a time when a child has changed your perspective or taught you something new.  


Diana, smiling wearing an orange scarf and brown shirt.

Diana MacKenzie

Public Art Program Educator from 2007-2016, Diana has a BFA in Printmaking from Syracuse University and creates mixed-media works inspired by her travels, combining her interests in printmaking and sculpture. She received her M.A.T. from Mount Holyoke College in June 2017, and continues teaching visual arts to children and adults.