“Thestuff you’re making is getting cheaper. The stuff you need is getting moreexpensive. That’s why you feel so squeezed.” (Thompson, 2011) Whenmentioning child development, we often review a child’s background includingthe environment or even demographics.
The common view we have on children inlower-income household is that they tend to do worse in terms of education andhealth compared to the higher-income households. However, it is not coherent ifthe different is due to their financial situation or other factors in thechild’s life. This could include the parent’s own level of education and thebehavior displayed by people in the child’s life. For example, in a behavioristview a student might do better than another in academics if he/she is praised.According to the parental approach do they follow a systematic role and givepunishment/rewards? This makes me question if household income plays a hugeoutcome in a student’s success or should the focus be on bettering schoolsystems and parenting capability. Thesecond article’s title states “30 Million in Poverty Aren’t as Poor as YouThink”, this is what the Heritage Foundation declares, and the reasoning isbecause the “…poor have access to air conditioning, television, and a car.”(Thompson, 2011) A graph from the year 2005 shows the various amenities thatpoor U.S Households have with refrigerator, television, and stove/oven rankingin the 97% rank.
Looking at the figures made me redefine what is considered as”poor” or who falls below the poverty line. According to The Department ofHealth and Human Services the guideline for a household of four is an annualincome of around twenty-five thousand. Give or take around four thousand foreach additional person in the household. Trying to relate it into my own shoesI decided to look at the expected income needed for a household of sevenpeople.
The figure was around thirty-seven thousand yearly for the forty-eightstates excluding Alaska and Hawaii. This was a wake-up call to remember whatbelow the poverty line means and not just having the image of random strangersnot having a home. Being below the poverty line could mean that you have accessto numerous of amenities and I agree with the article in that aspect but stillhaving these amenities is it enough to say that education doesn’t differbetween a higher and lower-income household? “…even America’s poorest haveaccess to relatively cheap electronics that weren’t available to even theworld’s richest a century ago. But that doesn’t disqualify then fromold-fashioned definition of poverty.” (Thompson, 2011) Lookingat the data provided by the U.S Census Bureau we can compare the percentage ofAmerican living below the poverty line. In 2011, the percentage was at one ofits lowest points standing at 11.
3% compared to 2013 at 14.5%. However, thearticle does state that the numbers don’t factor in government benefits/aid.3.7 million few people would have been excluded from the data provided in thegraph analysis. (Gongloff, 2014)Howdoes money affect children’s outcomes? Poverty makes it more likely for a childto do poorly in academics.
Depending on the family’s income they might live inan area where the school often has deficits in resources and do not have theamount of funding to provide challenging content and programs for the studentscompared to more prosperous areas. Even if a child wanted to attend anotherschool out of their area they would have to find their own accommodation in themeans of transportation. Children from low-income families may also findthemselves having difficulties with social/emotional development.
According tochildtrends.org impulsiveness, getting along with others, disobedience, andlower self-esteem in associated with children who are in family poverty. Therehas been many propose solution to decrease the percentage of American that arebelow the poverty line. One of the contributing factors for children tocontinue living in poverty is because of their guardians who do not have a job.
Increasing programs that assist families in food and health can help addressthese matters.