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DOUBLE TAP TO ZOOM WITH PHONE OR TABLET The book has been divided into chapters that compartmentalize the approach as much as possible. It is important to keep in mind that the separation is artificial—all elements of the approach are intercon- nected. It is also crucial to understand that there are no absolutes in the Reggio approach—no single answer or right way to do something. There are multiple ways of doing anything depending on the children and on the context. Even if I were to say, “In Reggio they do it like this . . . ,” it would be the way it was done one time in one school by one group of teachers. It could never be considered the rule for everyone. I will use firsthand examples and anecdotes from the schools of Reggio, but these are not blueprints to be copied. What is done in Reggio Emilia cannot be copied with the hopes of creating an authentic educational experience for young children. Instead, you can start by asking ques- tions and pushing your practice along the path that is Reggio-inspired. I will ask you to begin with some simple yet significant questions concerning your view of the child and childhood, as well as questions about learning and education and the relationships that exist between these concepts. Once you have had the opportunity to articulate your vision, I will take you through examining the environment in which you work. Is it reflective of your vision? Are your stated vision, your view of the child, and the environment aligned? This is the most difficult part of your work. Once you have articulated your view of the child and formulated your vision, everything in your school needs to reflect those values. Through the lens of your values about children and childhood, you will look at the physical environment and space; the organization of time; the Reggio approach to curriculum through progettazione, or projects; and then the documentation, questioning, and observation that give life to the curriculum and the program. If you find that what you do or what exists in your school is not in keeping with your views and vision in one or more of these categories (and trust me, we all find that there are gaps between what we believe and what we do!), you have a couple of options. You can revise your vision, or you can change your program to reflect your vision. This is the real work this book will ask you to do. It will take time, and some- times difficult and conflicting choices, but this process is the rigorous path towards working in Reggio-inspired ways, which is different for each school and teacher. It is useful to have a notebook to accompany this book in which you can do the exercises, take notes for yourself, and record your 6 WO R K I N G I N T H E R E G G I O WAY COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL