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In describing an approach as flexible, responsive, and present oriented, it is easy to imagine that what results is simply an advanced form of winging it. No longer burdened with charts, contracts, point systems, and other methods that require extensive forward planning and recording, all the teacher has to do is appear in the classroom and wait for things to happen to which she can flexibly respond. This is not the case. Genuine flexibility, which allows us to make use of what is happening as it happens, comes not from hope-and-a-prayer chance taking but from the security of knowing there is an underlying foundation to what we do. Thus, we must first create this foundation. Before any children ever walk through the door, the ...

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