Homelessness in the United States

952 Words4 Pages
The purpose of this paper is to examine the effects of poverty on young children and their families. The focus will be on homelessness and how the child is affected in two major settings: the home, or lack of, and school. In both of these settings, children are impacted by different social forces and must push through barriers that are set before them given their circumstance. “Living without permanent, long-term housing creates a number of stressors for children and families, but being homeless can be particularly detrimental to the healthy development of young children” (McCoy-Roth, Mackintosh, & Murphey, 2012). “Homeless families with very young children are one of the fastest growing segments of homelessness. This period in the life…show more content…
language, gross motor, fine motor, social) compared to only 16 percent of their housed peers. In addition, compared with their peers, a higher proportion of homeless preschoolers had a number of developmental delays” (McCoy-Roth, Mackintosh, & Murphey, 2012). This lends itself to an ever-continuous cycle of poverty, violence, and low education, many times leading to homelessness. When families have very low income, their children go hungry twice as much as their classmates who are not at the poverty level. Missing meals causes these children to have poor physical and emotional health, and limited opportunities to socially and educationally interact with peers (McCoy-Roth, Mackintosh, & Murphey, 2012). Children in this population have a hard time making friends as they are accustomed to having little to no privacy and experience higher levels of anxiety (Powell, 2012). “Many homeless children lack quality experiences in early learning environments. These inadequate learning experiences create an additional barrier to healthy growth in all developmental domains” (Powell, 2012). As early educators and advocates for young children, we need to be available to families in our area and play integral roles that can make a difference in their lives. Some ways that I could do that in a student’s life would be to assure that the family’s basic needs are met by striving to make a deeper connection, provide outside
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