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\"I\'ve started each book in some way knowing what it would be about. I\'d never given myself a chance to simply spend time with children. I regretted this because a lot of the things children have to say don\'t fit into any preplanned agenda. I\'ve had the dilemma over many years of talking to children who had many whimsical things to tell me and I\'d think, \'This isn\'t going to fit into Chapter 3.\'\"
So he decided, in his early 60s, to \"set aside a period of years that I could simply enjoy these kids and let them lead me where they wanted to lead me.\"
\"One reason the book is more joyful than others is that I put aside my own political beliefs,\" Kozol says. \"I spent six months removing about 50 pages of polemical writing from the book, some of which I loved, but I removed these passages because I didn\'t want to compete with the children\" or their caretakers.\"