Children Living in Poverty

This Frontline article was published, along with a PBS special entitled Poor Kids, last year and discussed some very serious statistics about the number of children living in poverty in the United States. The surprising statistics for me were that Mexico and Chile are the only countries that have higher poverty rates than the U.S. and that we have more than 16 billion children or 1 in 5 are living in poverty. In working with at-risk children everyday, I believe that I need to delve deeper into how poverty affects every aspect of their life. A child’s development is compromised cognitively, physically, emotionally, and socially by the environment that they are exposed to on a daily basis. By researching the lasting effects of living in these conditions, I hope that I can positively affect social change in my classroom and my community by raising awareness of the needs of children living in poverty and encourage families to seek the resources needed to help them live a better life. My research questions for my topic will include how can early childhood professionals assist families in poverty, how can we minimize the negative effects of poverty on four and five year olds entering school, and how can we better engage families in their child’s educational journey.