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DOUBLE TAP TO ZOOM WITH PHONE OR TABLET image” of the child, teacher, and parents together as part of the teaching and learning process. Though we don’t dwell on aspects of the social-emotional environment in this book, it is an implied foun- dation and became a significant focus for two of our other books, Learning Together with Young Children and The Visionary Director. Designs for Living and Learning is shaped by a particular set of values and beliefs we hold as early childhood professionals. It draws on the influences outlined above, the inventive and creative work of early childhood teachers and providers we have met and heard about, along with continual reflec- tions on our own work over the years. Values we hold for children include the following: • Children deserve to be surrounded with beauty, softness, and comfort, as well as order and attention to health and safety. • Childhood is a time of wonder and magic, where dreams and imagination get fueled and issues of power are explored. • In their early years, children need multiple ways to build a solid identity and connections with those around them—their families, peers, role models, culture and community, and the natural world. Hilltop Children's Center, Seattle, WA • Children bring a powerful drive to learn and understand what is around them. They learn best when offered interesting materials, ample time, and opportunity to investigate, transform, and invent—without the interruptions of a teacher’s schedule. • Children come to early childhood programs with ideas, experi- ences and skills that are “funds of knowledge” from their families and communities, which need to be acknowledged and drawn upon as teachers coach them into new learning. They have vivid imaginations and theories about the world, which need to be taken seriously and explored more fully. • Children have active bodies and a desire for adventure; they have the right to show adults how powerful and competent they are. • Children have a wide range of strong feelings; they deserve to ex- press their feelings and be respected. Their emotional intelligence is as important to cultivate as intelligence related to academic COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL Introduc tion   ]   11