Education is an important issue when it comes to the development and future of young children in the community and society. However, education is often hindered for those children who are from homeless families. Most of the children get affected in school work due to depression, anxiety, and stress brought about by the situation of their families. Moreover, the health conditions of the school-aged children interfere with the education. In addition, the attendance and grade scores are often very low as compared to children from stable homes (Grant & Ray, 2010). Therefore, the paper reflects on the informal interview with parents and a family event observation in during a home visit and working with a homeless family.
Informal Interview with the Family
I focused on visiting the family twice and when I arrived at the interviewed candidate 's place that was shortly after submitting our midterm assignment on mid-July and finally during the end of July, we got into one of the beautiful and meaningful conversations that yielded much in the long run. First, I had doubtful thoughts that all events would at time backfire and I didn't have the total confidence since the assignment was necessary and if given a chance, I could have engaged a different person to facilitate the whole process. I did n't find it necessary and neither did I recognized it as an essential part of the study that will give me an opportunity to learn about people outside as an educator. Just immediately I got an access to the main gate, I found a little kid playing at the compound and I was amazed how every unveiled so quickly. The interviewee opened the door after and all that followed was a loud scream since she was happy seeing me after a long period of time. This made me feel comfortable and it also created a friendly environment that was suitable to conduct the interview process.
Comfortably walking into the house, I could feel that everything was different, that is from the design of the house, the internal decor and making a comparison with most homes in our home region, the building was a little bit different and unique at the same time. With a huge family room and beautiful coaches in place, the environment was entirely homely and at the same time welcoming to interact and even meet. Even though I had the general feeling of having to get over the interview process in the minimal time possible, such as feeling subsided and the friendly environment made me to unconsciously extend the total time spent in conducting the general process.
The interviewee and I comfortably sat down close to the television which by then was focusing on the daily updates and through such a comfortable environment, I interacted for a while and the whole story changed. I started inquiring more and even raised some of the questions which I had earlier for the interviewee. The whole process was quite engaging and through what transpired he could explain better how his upbringing and the general family background played a significant role in what he ended up becoming in the long run. Being raised with his stepfather, he missed a motherly role in his life and even if most of the time the father was not most of the time available, he learned to survive alone and even take care through various means.
Observation of Family Events
With the family set up involving a family that has been homeless for the past four years where they have moved from one relative to another, and from one region to a different area, in such for peace and a convenient environment to stay, it was a privilege for the family not be staying in the streets again. Moreover, the family has stayed in streets when they had no other option. Recently, the family is privileged to have found a temporary shelter where the mother and the children stay while the father is not accommodated. Thus, the father comes to visit few times and goes back to the streets and working from job to job to provide for the family. From how the story was transpiring, the general assumption that ran on my mind was that the interviewee was going through a serious financial challenge, due to the fact that they were just recovering from the life outside street and it was clearly evident that the children were surviving to cope up with some life challenges.
Community shelters are provided in order to accommodate the homeless families. Majority of the homeless families residing in the streets, motels and moving from one relative to another. The situation often gets worsened if there are young children involved where they have to go through the experience together with their parents. My home visit involved a family which was composed of a mother, a father and three young school-going children. The family has been homeless for the past four years where they have moved from one relative to another, and from one place to another. Moreover, the family has stayed in streets when they had no other option. Recently, the family is privileged to have found a temporary shelter where the mother and the children stay while the father is not accommodated. Thus, the father comes to visit few times and goes back to the streets and working from job to job to provide for the family.
I got a chance to interview both the parents at the same time for more information concerning the struggles they face especially in educating their children. For instance, the mother admitted that there is a period where they were staying temporarily with friends but as their stay got longer, they were given a month to find a new place. It brought about depression in her and she started abusing drugs to relieve the pain. The condition affected the children where they were forced to skip school and as the parents were trying to find new places. The mother gave another scenario during their struggles where they were forced to sleep under the bridge in the street. The situation was so severe in that they had no food to eat and were unable to access the essential social services. As a result, the children could only attend school few times a week which significantly interfered with their education. Moreover, during the bad condition of life, the health of their oldest son got really bad and he had to skip school for a whole month missing out on an important examination in school.
Furthermore, I discovered that, as the family was forced to move from one place to another in search of shelter to the extent of leaving their community. Thus, the children were forced to change schools now and then regardless of their school preference. Changing schools interferes with the concentration and focus of children in their education. Also, it's hard to make friends in the new schools leading to cases of depression, loneliness, and even an urge to drop out of school. Another important discovery was a crowded environment homeless people face. Overcrowded in people causes increased aggression, psychological distress, social withdrawal and poor behavior relating to school adjustment. Hence, the parents admitted to talking less to their children, respond rarely to their wants and needs and sometimes engage in punitive parenting. Indeed, without the availability of housing, lack of food and strong parental and adult support, the children are likely to underperform in school graduating with lower grades or drop out of school.
Application of New Knowledge
According to my previous assumption, I always thought that all parents should ensure that their children are in school at all the time failure to which they could get into legal problems. Also, I knew that the engagement of parents in the life children is more important as compared to their daily income. Finally, parents should start being part of the children education from since they are in preschool. However, the case is different for young school-going from homeless families. Most of the parents in homeless families are willing to enroll and keep their children at school but the circumstance always works against them. The need to move from one place to another will force parents to experience difficulties in finding new schools. Moreover, the lack of proper income for homeless families leads to lack of proper housing, food security, and proper health. The factors contribute negatively to the education of the children.
The major questions to brought in a lot of information on the topic included:
- What challenges do you face as a homeless family?
- How has the education of the children were affected by the current situation?
- How flexible are you of reaching out for help?
- Do authorities discriminate against the homeless people?
- How does the environment affect the education of the children?
- What can the government do to help the homeless especially when it comes to the education of the children living in shelters and homeless backgrounds?
- What do you think of the community service programs offered?
Notably, it's rare to find a homeless family holds many events like dinner due to the situation. However, I was able to meet the family at a family gathering when the father came to visit the mother and the children in the temporary shelter. During the family event, there was rarely any laughter and few conversations made. The children often kept silent, socially withdrawn unless they had to answer questions if asked by parents. At some point, the mother broke into tears when the last-born child asked when he would be going back to school. Moreover, the toys were available but none of the children were interested in playing with them. Nevertheless, the father kept on assuring the kids that one day the situation will change and they can have a better life, attend school regularly and get food supply(Grant, & Blanchard, 2015).
After have gained great confidence, I find it very easy to and pretty confident about asking the family, how they have been surviving through such a difficult financial turmoil. This ended up creating a mixed reaction and things turn out to be greatly intense at this point. The family narrated their great struggles and how life has been very unfair on their side. The street life is one of the challenging life since one is not certain of how and where the next meal will come from. Through some questions, things got a little bit tense and emotional at the same time. I decided to switch the topic by asking some of the inspirational achievement that inspired family even during the most difficult environment. Additionally, I made sure that the conversation was interesting by asking them about their pet and the general experience of keeping a cat as a pet. At one point I realized that the family was back to light and they would gladly talk about their cat and the great nature of joy and even various motivation that have been in place when it comes to raising such a beautiful cat
I learned that there existed a lot of love in the family. However, the state of homelessness affected the family relation to a great extent. The children looked depressed and stressed about the situation. The state of moving from one place to another and surviving without food most of the times is not working out well for the children. More so, I discovered that the children yearned to access a stable education system which has been hampered for a long time. Nonetheless, the parents wished for the same thing but they were unable to provide at the time. Having come from a stable family background with all basic needs available, I realized the need to value what we have. For instances, parents should work towards ensuring that their children are provided with safe environments for learning. The key items should include food availability, parental support, proper housing and efficient healthcare services. The absence leads to depressed, socially withdrawn children with hi...
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Essay on Children Education in Homeless Families. (2022, Jun 16). Retrieved from https://proessays.net/essays/essay-on-children-education-in-homeless-families
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