Practices/1, Italy: Facilitating Participation in Early Childhood Education

  • Claudio BaraldiEmail author
Part of the International Perspectives on Early Childhood Education and Development book series (CHILD, volume 25)


This chapter concerns a way of observing activities in early childhood education. It concerns the observation of children’s active participation in interactions with peers and teachers. An important issue in this observation is if children’s participation can also mean children’s agency. Agency means display of autonomy in action, choosing among different possibilities, which allows children’s promotion of change of communication structures, such as hierarchical and role structures. In educational activities, agency is made visible as attribution to children of rights and responsibilities in producing knowledge, i.e. as epistemic authority. The chapter analyses how children’s epistemic authority is constructed in interactions video-recorded in a pre-school setting in the Italian town of Reggio Emilia, exploring some ways in which adults can enhance agency in early childhood education.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Modena and Reggio EmiliaModenaItaly

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