About Acorn

Rosalba Bortolotti is a passionate and enthusiastic early learning educational consultant with over 27 years of experience working with children, their families, and colleagues. She works from her home studio and atelier work spaces in Toronto, Ontario. Rosalba is an artist and  Registered Early Childhood Educator with a BAA from York University.

As a mother of three growing boys, Rosalba has always been interested sustainable living, eating and being with others. With strong, grounded Italian roots, culture, traditions, and food are very important and remain as the foundation to bringing out the Reggio Emilia philosophy to the front stage in her workshops, seminars, and consulting.

As an early learning educator, consultant, and previous owner of  Acorn School (A Reggio Emilia inspired school), Rosalba brings vast experience when working with various organizations, committees, schools, and early learning centres throughout the province, Canada, and internationally.  She works with the teachers, families, and other educators to support how learning happens, professional development, school wide parent partnership, and research development. Rosalba continues to be the owner and pedagogical consultant for Acorn Collaborative. A business that has been operating since 2005.

Rosalba is an educator, artist, researcher, mentor, collaborator, leader, and lifelong learner. She brings her jounery of being Reggio inspired as continous learning with others, building on relationships, creating deeper thinking sessions. Her goal is to continue to advocate for early learning, educators, and children. To inpsire, many along the way.

Rosalba continues to visit the schools of Reggio Emilia which provide her with a deeper pedagogical understanding and inspiration for her consulting and presentation sessions. She has also worked as a lead teacher in the Seneca Lab School and part time professor in the School of Early Childhood Education at Seneca College.

Rosalba is passionate about bringing families together through knowledge building and experiences in farm to table foods, cooking together family style, slow living, slow food, sustainability in education, and everyday practices with children and nature. She is involved with different organizations including Slow Food Canada and an Ambassador for Food Revolution. Working closely with celebrity chefs on bringing good, sustainable food education into homes, schools, and early learning centres.

Recently, Rosalba contributed to Beautiful Stuff from Nature: More Learning with Found Materials. Edited by Cathy Weisman Topal and Lella Gandini.

In addition, Rosalba is on the Provincial Centre of Excellence for Early Years and Child Care in Ontario and is a community pedagogist for this project. An exciting time for Ontario as the Centre will support the How Does Learning Happen? Ontario’s Pedagogy for the Early Years? and promote ongoing pedagogical approaches across the early year programs.


Rosalba has also completed the certification in  Pop Up Adventure Playgrounds UK as a Play-worker and has implemented strategies and recommendations in early year programs on the nature of risky play and discovery within early year programs.

Rosalba is also a founder member of the Ontario Reggio Association which was established in 2007 as a non-profit organization for educators who are interested in the work and education system of the infant-toddler and preschools  in Reggio Emilia.

Rosalba is also on the executive board of the  and is also a member of the                          York Region Nature Collaborative which has been operating since 2014. The YRNC brings nature and pedagogy into life as workshops, seminars, discovery walks, conferences,  designed for early childhood educators, teachers, community, families, and children are available to learn in nature. Each year the YRNC has a summer institute for one week in August. This is a one week intensive session with daily outdoor learning experiences, special guests that have included educators from England, Australia, California, Michigan, Chicago, and others to name a few.

She has also participated in ongoing professional learning in Hong Kong with international schools and with young children.

Rosalba is willing to consult, present at conferences, seminars, network, co-create early learning environments, work with early learning centres, school boards, private schools, and other institutes.

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