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How poverty effects cognitive development

Page history last edited by Crystal Dyess-Carroll 10 years, 8 months ago



Poverty and Its Effects 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Society is responsible for the future of poor children (Campbell & Pungello, 2001). There are so many stories that you hear of the neglect, abuse, and abandonment of children living in the United States. Poverty stricken isn’t just meaning that the parents or caregivers are living in poor conditions; it may mean that it is ultimately the child who is facing poor living conditions and not getting the basic necessities he or she needs. Poverty has had a traumatically bad influence on the development and the health of a child (Aber, Bennett, & Conley, 1997). Poverty has potentially been associated with neglect, abuse, as well as the increased risk of prenatal and postnatal developmental issues such as increased mortality rates, higher risk of asthma, as well as developmental disabilities (Aber, Bennett, & Conley, 1997).

     The risk factors associated with poverty affecting the developmental process which includes the motor and cognitive development of a child are ultimately because of the lack of education of parents and caregivers. Akai and colleagues (2008) evaluated how effective intervention would be for at risk mothers to increase the understanding of infant developmental needs as well as increase the positive behavior and support of the mothers. Early intervention is an important part in bettering parental investment, especially for those parents who live in poverty who lack the resources. The study that Akai and colleagues (2008) presented resulted in the intervention programs having a great impact on the at risk mothers who participated. The mothers learned the importance of the first year of their child’s life. With providing the outlet for the at risk mothers to participate in intervention programs to increase the parent skills and taking care of their infant they received a great amount of knowledge to successfully raise their child. With the success of early intervention it also provides the child living in poverty a better chance of not having risks for cognitive delays (Campbell & Pungello, 2001). This opportunity that at risk mothers were provided within the Akai and colleague (2008) study shows that when society steps up to provide the opportunity to be a part of this program at no cost, it shows how meaningful it can be in changing the lives of children living in poverty. The downfall is that this was just a study, but it shows that all children deserve a chance to succeed (Campbell & Pungello, 2001). The study had no mention of intervention programs beyond early childhood. With the lack of resources that children living in persistent poverty have, intervention programs need to be on going past early childhood into adolescence. Cognitive development is crucial at early childhood, but cognitive outcomes are still at stake during adolescence (Najman, Hayatbakhsh, Heron, & Bor, 2009).



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