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The social, economic and cultural factors that impact on the lives of children Essay

1.1 Describe the social, economic and cultural factors that will impact on the lives of children and young people.

The social,economic and cultural factors that can have an impact on the lives of children and young people are through things such as poverty so how the children are living, the conditions of their living environment. This has an impact on their lives because if a child is living in poor conditions this could lead to affect a child’s health because their parents or carers might not be able to afford to pay for electric or gas because of poverty. So the child could be sleeping in bad conditions they could become sick often which would cause them to miss out on school which would only affect their educational development. A child also living in poor conditions could be disadvantaged in having a good chance of succeeding like other children because their parents could be finding it difficult to afford books they need for school and so the child will end up under achieving and missing out of good learning opportunities which could help them to progress in the best ways possible.

Also the parents of a child could be unemployed which would cause a strain on them financially being able to buy their child clothes or for them to manage to pay the bills in their home. Other factors can include ethnic and cultural beliefs this could definitely affect a child or young person in many ways because their beliefs have a big impact on their lives and the choices they can make. Due to a child’s ethnic and cultural beliefs this could limit and restrict them from having the abilities to explore in the ways other children can, a young child might not be able to participate in specific activities in a setting because of their families cultural beliefs and this could make a child feel excluded and not feel the same as the other children, therefore it would affect their emotional development which is how they feel.

This could also affect them socially as a child being restricted to participating in certain activities because of their families personal cultural beliefs could result in the child missing out on being able to interact with the other children and freely share their creative skills through different activities as much as they would want to, in some situations they would have to sit aside or maybe do something separate from the other kids which is only unfair to them. Also bereavement and sudden loss with family members or parents/carers, this would affect a young child in all ways and it would affect their emotional as well as physical health because they would have to come to the terms of not having that important adult in their lives any more who has raised them and helped to play an important role in their lives and this could cause many emotions inside to spiral out of control, a child would feel confused, very upset and also angry and as they are unable to express themselves in the correct ways a child could act out in their settings and behave in ways they never usually do.

A child could become more aggressive and misbehave or it could be the complete opposite a child could become totally reserved and withdrawn from everyone. This could affect their health physically due to stress the child may become unwell and not able to deal with the loss of their parent or close family member. Another social, economic, cultural factor that can impact the lives of children and young people is a child having a parent or carer who suffers from addiction problems. This would emotionally stress a child out cause them to act out at school in unwanted behaviours. It could also effect their chances in life for the future in a very negative way as they could grow up and follow what they’ve seen their parents do all their lives and choose to go down the wrong path leading them to never achieve in school or make anything positive out of their lives as they get older.

It could just lead them to a future life of drugs, alcohol and possibly crime all due to being exposed to the wrong things from their parents at an early age. Educational environments play a massive part on the impact of a child’s life too, if there are insufficient access to books, and other educational resources for a child or young person it would take a negative impact on their chances in learning and developing in the ways they should and could cause a child to most likely fail to meet their full potential in life.

1.2. Explain the importance and impact of poverty on outcomes and life chances for children and young people.

(List of possible impact of poverty on children’s life chances) The importance and impact of poverty on outcomes and life chances for children and young people is through the ECM (every child matters) which basically links to the poverty agenda and this framework is put into place to ensure all children should be achieving economic well being, this is one out of the five important requirements of the ECM framework the other requirements include children to be healthy, stay safe, enjoy and achieve, and to make positive contributions. It is also to ensure families parents/carers of children and young people get the support they need to help their children’s needs. Children and young people who are facing poverty are most likely to have at least one or in some cases both of their parents who are unemployed.

Sometimes this could be due to their parents or carers being disabled or suffering from other problem’s such as mental health and this would affect a child or young person’s chances in life because they wont be getting the sufficient support they truly need with school, or with their learning as their parents wont be able to help them. Due to this a child’s learning development could begin to suffer, the child could show signs of being slow in school and could need extra support from other professionals such as learning mentors or educational psychologists to come in and help give that additional support they’ve not been getting at home. It could also begin to affect their social development skills as the child can start to not behave their usual selves, not be expressive like the other children because of so much personal issues they are having to deal with at home.

Lone parents and also teenage parents could be most likely to be living in poverty and this could affect a child’s life chances and outcomes in some negative ways as a teen parent could be struggling financially, they could be unable to provide for their children with the full care and support which a child needs and unable to buy them facilities for school which won’t help the child to progress on the level they should. The importance and impact of poverty on outcomes and life chances with children and young people can be the simple difference between their parents being employed or being unemployed. The income of parents can determine a child’s prospects and how their future life chances can be either positive or negative.

Also the difference of areas a child is raised and brought up in for example a inner city or suburban/rural area,if a child is brought up in a poor area this would have an high chances of affecting them in negative ways however if they are brought up in a good area with good schools and positive surroundings this will have a positive affect on their future life chances. Also a child having access to play leisures, good facilities and living in a good quality home where they are well fed, clothes and supported all contributes to their outcomes and life chances as well. According to Penny Tassoni (page 187) “Family outcomes influences the type of area in which a child is brought up in (inner- city/suburban/rural), the level of housing the family can afford to live in and the quality of food provided, as well as access to leisure facilities, outings and holidays.”

1.3. Explain the role of children and young people’s personal choices and experiences on their outcomes and life chances.

The role of children and young people’s personal choices and experiences on their outcomes and life chances through helping a child to develop their communication skills, ensure legal responsibilities are upheld in the correct ways and ensuring children have a voice to contribute to their own choices. Also by making all children and young people feel valued and respected by involving them in decision making also all children and young people’s views should be taken into account, this is a good way to make a child feel as thought their thoughts and opinions are valued because they can have an input in the choices they make and make some of their own personal choices for themselves. It’s about allowing children to grow to be confident individuals, to learn maturity, to learn to assess risks themselves,and to be socially aware of things so they can know the good and potentially bad choices they should or shouldn’t make.

According to Penny Tassoni (page 188) “To ensure that children have the best outcomes there is evidence to show that they need to share in determining their future and should be given a voice to make choices and contribute their experiences.” The different personal choices which children make can affect them either positively or negatively, for example a child could choose a bowl of grapes during meal and snack time instead of a bowl of apples, this personal choice is showing the child’s own preferences of what he or she simply likes or maybe dislikes, so this is a positive personal experience because they are learning there different preferences are freely expressing as well as independently choosing what they like. This will have have good outcomes on a child in the future because as they grow older they will grow to be very assertive and know how to think for themselves and could make their own choices independently.

Whereas you could have a child who watches another child playing with a toy and the child decides to walk over and snatch the toy off them. This is a negative personal choice which this young child has made and they would certainly need to learn this is wrong behaviour and that they cannot do things like this otherwise the negative outcome is the child could grow up to think this sort of behaviour is indeed acceptable and they could grow up thinking they can take other people’s belongings. So it is highly important children and young people are making the correct personal choices or it could affect their outcomes and life chances in negative ways. Young people choosing to make certain choices and de scions in life could also affect their outcomes on life and future life chances.

For example, a young person deciding to skip school with their friends everyday, this is a personal choice they have made which could have negative affects on their life chances for the future as they will be missing out on their education and so many important things and later in life they will find that it will be difficult because they won’t have that level of qualifications to get a good job they want or to achieve and be as successful as they could have if they attended school and worked hard. Also a young person deciding to do things such as drink or smoke and experiment with drug substances, they might not see the affect this could have in their future lives, however this personal choice will have many affects as they could get older and become addicted to these substances and their health in the future could be damaged and lead to major problems and these are all very negative outcomes, the chances of anything positive coming out of their life would be wasted because of the wrong choices they decided to make.

2.1. Identify the positive outcomes for children and young people that practitioners should be striving to achieve.
(List of 5 outcomes of the Every Child Matters Agenda and how children are supported to achieve them in your setting)

The positive outcomes for children and young people which practitioners should be striving to achieve is through the ECM framework which is all based on ensuring all children and young people are achieving the five positive outcomes which are to ensure every child should be healthy, stay safe, enjoy and achieve, make positive contributions and achieve economic well being and these are all highly important for practitioners to enforce in the setting amongst children and young people. The ways in which children and young people can be supported to achieve these outcomes is through different activities in the settings such as creative games, literacy and numeracy games included as educational games will help the children and young people to develop and improve their learning skills such as their reading,writing and numbers.

Also through practitioners teaching the children the children about health and safety, so informing them of the different dangers inside and outside the setting and letting them know how to protect themselves. Teaching them about their health so enforcing hygiene and letting them know they must always wash their hands or they will catch germs, letting them know why it is important for them to eat healthy foods such as their fruits and vegetables and how getting their five a day will help them to grow into strong healthy boys and girls and they will grow to be healthy adults in the future. Other ways practitioners can support children and young people to achieve these five important, positive outcomes is also through allowing children to explore safely and have fun because as much as it is highly important for children and young people to achieve in the best ways possible, you still want them to enjoy themselves and have fun learning and experiencing things.

2.2. Explain the importance of designing services around the needs of children and young people.

The importance of designing services around the needs of children and young people is to firstly recognise as a practitioner every child is different so each child and young person will have separate needs as well as requirements and also different barriers which could be preventing them from achieving in the best ways possible. The ECM provides five important requirements which each and every child should all be achieving in. The Children’s Trusts are also put into place to ensure that children services are working together to achieve the ECM outcomes and to ensure the correct referrals are being made for children who have additional needs and who could need extra support. According to Penny Tassoni (page 192) “ The focus of the ECM is providing a range of services to children and young people that are accessible and integrated in every area.”

Also through multi-agency working with other children’s services to help identify the needs of a child or young person at an early stage so it can be dealt with quickly and effectively. There are many other services which are there to help support children and their families and the services are highly important because they ensure the outcomes of the ECM framework are indeed possible for all children and young people to meet successfully. The different professional working teams and services are organisations such as, social services, health services, educational psychologists, SENCO’s, learning mentors and many more which each work individually as well as in a team to help provide that support to the needs of children and young people, to also ensure they improve in area’s they are lacking in and achieve in their area of learning and their personal development skills.

2.3. Explain the importance of active participation of children and young people in decisions affecting their lives.
(List the factors needed to ensure parents’ and children’s needs are met in designing children’s services)

Evaluate as to how successful these are in your area.  Include how much parents are actively involved in decision making.) The importance of active participation of children and young people in decisions affecting their lives are through ensuring as a practitioner you are communicating openly with the parents and carers of the child and always making the parents feel as though you respect their opinions and what they have to say. Other skills practitioners need to enforce when promoting active participating in a setting is through them listening actively to what the children have to say as well as listening to family members and being prepared to always take on board what they express to you, and assuring them you are prepared to try and change day to day practice or change the ways in which the setting is organised.

According to Penny Tassoni ( page 193) “In the past, services were provided for children and families without attempting to tune into what the children and families actually needed or wanted; active participation helps to overcome this and ensures that people are treated as individuals.” The importance of active participation as well as including families in these active participations is that, this allows practitioners in a work setting to adapt to what they do so they can meet the needs and wants of a child more effectively. It is also highly important because when children and young people are given the support to participate actively in tasks, or through learning this builds their self confidence and builds the skills in them to learn how to tackle challenging things and also new situations. Also through communicating with children the practitioners are able to view things from their perspective and could adapt this to their service of work and be able to make sure they do everything they can to ensure all children’s individual needs are met in sufficient and effective ways.

Giving parents/carers the chance to join in with play experiences and activities with their children and informing parents with what opportunities the setting has to offer for there child, keeping them up to date with what you aim to do with their child, this all helps parents to be aware of what there child are doing so they can also play an active part in decisions affecting their lives. Practitioners should also ensure they monitoring and evaluating participation. They should be monitoring how well they are promoting active participation amongst children and young people, evaluating and thinking of new ways they can improve in these areas, which is important because as a practitioner they will know where there strengths and weaknesses are and how they can improve in a better quality of work with children and young people.

2.4. Explain how to support children and young people according to their age, needs and abilities to make personal choices and experiences that have a positive impact on their lives. (Reflective account/log book entries of how you supported children to make choices which have a positive impact)

The ways in which to support children and young people according to their age, needs and abilities to make personal choices and experiences that will have a positive impact on their lives. I feel for young children at a younger stage it’s more about teaching them and guiding them about what is wrong and what is right so they learn this, also with young children they need the encouragement to learn to solve problems for themselves but still assure them you will be there to help them if needed. Another good way to support children and young people to make personal choices and experiences that have a positive impact on their lives is through practitioners involving the parents/carer’s of a child, giving them leaflets, letters and information when they go to the setting about what they are doing with the children so parents can also get involved.

Parents could continue to teach their children these life lessons at home as well. Listening to the children and young people is key, and is very important because this will allow them to naturally feel if they had a problem or any sort of concerns they could easily go to you, as they will feel comfortable knowing you will always provide that positive guidance and this would help encourage them to make positive personal choices. For young people who could be at an older stage I feel they need an adult who is able to advise them and talk to them as a young adult so ensure they understand the importance of each personal choice they make and how it could affect their life or have an impact on their life in a positive or negative way. Also explaining to them the different consequences that come with making certain choices so this will make them realise they need to avoid making the wrong choices and focus on making positive personal choices and experiences that could bring them positive outcomes.

3.1. Explain the potential impact of disability on the outcomes and life chances of children and young people. (types of disability
impact on life chances and any personal experiences with children)

The potential impact of disability on the outcomes and life chances of children and young people are that children and young people who suffer from disabilities such as learning impairments where they have lost their hearing or children who are blind and have a loss of sight. This could affect their abilities to learning as they won’t be able to see or hear things from teachers and they would have a disadvantage to learning on an effective level like the rest of the children who don’t have any difficulties. Also physical impairments this can cause a negative impact on a child or young persons outcomes and life chances as it could affect their health development and start to affect their educational experiences which would only cause problems for them later in life,

Other disabilities which could affect a child and young persons life chances would be them suffering from learning difficulties as well as difficulties with their emotional or social development, this could disrupt a child’s progress all round and later in life cause problems with them not knowing how to interact or socialise with other people, they could also grow to become really withdrawn and not want to mix with different peer groups or socialise amongst new people they meet in life because of their disability and they could feel self conscious about it and lack in self confidence. Families who also have a child that could suffer with disabilities can tend to face some financial issues which could also have affects on the child and their life chances because they could be missing out on a lot of things or the family may not be able to afford to pay for extra support services which could help their child.

Practitioners who work in the nursery settings need to ensure they are enforcing positivity with children and young people with disabilities because if they focus on the negative things, and all the things the child cannot do this would affect the child’s outcome in negative ways as they would feel low in themselves and it would affect their emotional well being. It could cause them to under achieve in many ways because they would feel as though they are useless and can’t achieve anything in life. So negative talking about a child or young persons disability or special needs also affects their outcomes because it causes a child to develop negative thinking about themselves and children are very sensitive so you need to ensure always giving them positive words of encouragement and reassurance, letting them know that they can achieve anything they put their minds to no matter their circumstances. According to Penny Tassoni (page 198) “It is unhelpful to talk about disabled children as having special needs since their needs are the same as those of other children.”

3.2. Explain the importance of positive attitudes towards disability and specific requirements.

The importance of positive attitudes towards disability and specific requirements are that the appropriate resources and facilities should be available to them so they are able to get the additional support they need. Also the attitudes people have towards disabled children and young people are important because their attitudes should be positive to ensure all children they can have the same equal learning opportunities and achievements like the other children. It is important so a child doesn’t feel like they are less capable than anyone else and so they can feel positive in themselves. Other requirements include the environment where the children and young people spend their time is adjusted to their specific requirements and suited to meet all their needs. Positive attitudes towards children and young people who have disabilities is also highly important because so often people like to talk down on disabled children and have low expectations of them, also expect them to underachieve because they assume they are incapable of anything, when all children need in adults who work with them, or practitioners to have faith in them and give them positive encouragement to ensure they reach their full potential.

Whether a child is disabled or not they all deserve to be treated with respect and shouldn’t be put down. It is important for practitioners to keep a reasonable balance of being realistic about the limitations that a child or young persons impairments could cause, however they must ensure they are maintaining high expectations for the child’s progress and achievements in their learning and development. Being over protective of a child with disabilities could also limit what they could potentially achieve so it is also important practitioners be positive and allow disabled children and young people to try and be a little independent with their learning so they can learn to make progress for themselves too.

According to Penny Tassoni (page 198) “Low expectations about the potential of a disabled child, or being over-protective of them can limit what they achieve.” In order for children and young people to be positive in themselves as well as achieve successfully in all areas of learning and development it is important practitioners working amongst children maintain a positive attitude towards them at all times.

3.3. Explain the social and medical models of disability and the impact of each on practice.

The social and medical models of disability and the impact of each on practice is that firstly, the social model of disability and medical model is put into place to help practitioners understand the effects disability has on individuals especially on children and young people. Medical labels which are placed on disabled people isn’t entirely a good thing as this could prevent practitioners and other professionals who work amongst disabled people to not see the whole person they only view the disability part of them and not realise their could be a lot more to that person. Their disability shouldn’t be the thing to define them as a person, it also prevents practitioners from developing a formed picture of the whole of the person including other things such as their ethnicity, cultural and social backgrounds.

The social models of disability has a more different constructive approach, as this model focuses on people’s thoughts upon addressing the issues and finding out the different solutions or approaches people need to take to work out what they can do to enable a disabled child or young person can still achieve their full potential and achieve successfully in having a good fulfilling life and future. The difference between the two models are that the medical model expects disabled people to try and change to fit into the society, whereas the social model focuses and puts much more emphasis on the ways in which society needs to change to help enforce the best outcomes for disabled people. According to Penny Tassoni (page 199) “The strength of the social model is that it identifies problems which can be resolved if the environment is adapted and the right resources are made available; whereas the medical model dwells on problems which are often insoluble.”

The social model would have good impacts on disabled people because this model is based on respecting the rights of them and understanding their individual needs and wants. If there are any specific barriers to their requirements this model focuses on finding ways to remove them. So this would make disabled people feel valued and not feel as though they are being treated unfairly or that the society simply doesn’t care about their feelings as individuals. They would feel respected and feel good to know they have the support of the social model that is there to help find ways to help improve disabled people’s personal rights. However the medical model almost view disability as something that should be cured and simply put labels on disabled people, so this would cause an impact on making them feel unworthy and not feel supported in positive ways.

3.4. Explain the different types of support that are available for disabled children and young people and those with specific requirements.
(Make a list or table of support service available and explain how they can support the child)

The different types of support that are available for disabled children and young people and those with specific requirements are all depending on how bad their disability is of such, so a child or young person with learning difficulties would get support through a portage programme developed in partnership with their family which would help to give them all the additional support they need. Also a child or young person who has a disability such as down-syndrome could receive learning support in a nursery setting from an additional adult to come in and give them that extra support to help them with their learning development and they would work with them to help them slowly improve in these areas. The other types of support which are available to children and young people who suffer from disabilities are if they have epilepsy a child or young person is going to need regular monitoring. They would also need other professionals such as health visitors which could go into the child’s settings and they could adjust medication for them appropriately to help them and help calm down their reactions.

Also a child or young person who has a cleft plate which is another form of disability they would need a speech therapist and language therapy to come in and help them following on with surgery. These are all the different types of support which are all available to children and young people of disability. The Early Years support programme which aims at the early identification of children’s impairments, this is a really good family focused service and this programme helps to provide different information to parents/carers about living with a disabled child. It also explains the different agencies and professionals which can also help provide support to them and information, so this is another type of support available to children and young people who are disabled.

4.1. Explain the meaning of equality, diversity and inclusion in the context of positive outcomes for children and young people.

The meaning of equality is giving all children and young people the same opportunities to develop and learn, while their emotional well being and their physical safety is protected, diversity is to do with the acknowledgement and respect of each and and everyone’s individuality and understanding that everyone is different and come from all different types of cultures, social backgrounds, different races and everyone’s views on things as well as beliefs are different. Inclusion is to access appropriate but different experiences in a setting and ensuring that each and every child can feel apart of something taking place, ensuring they can participate and feel included as an individual. In the context of positive outcomes for children and young people, the ways in which equality, diversity and inclusion will help them is through them learning and understanding how to respect other people who are different from them and those who are from different cultural backgrounds.

Also respecting those who have different views and beliefs from themselves. It also has positive outcomes because children and young people will learn about different cultures outside of their won and what they are used to, they can share different life learning experiences and can learn how to adapt to different diverse backgrounds. If equality, diversity and inclusion is not promoted amongst children and young people in positive ways, this could cause many issues such as prejudiced and discriminating behaviour which will affect the outcomes of children and young people in negative ways as they will grow up in life to have these prejudice attitudes and to not respect other peoples cultural backgrounds. It could also lead to them having very stereotypical minds about those who are different from themselves and this isn’t the correct mindset of thinking for any child or young person to develop. According to Penny Tassoni (page 202) “Promoting positive outcomes for children depends on promoting equality, diversity, and inclusion in ways which are appropriate to their individual characteristics and requirements.”

4.2. Compare, giving examples, ways in which services for children, young people and their carers take account of and promote equality, diversity and inclusion to promote positive outcomes. (Reflective accounts/log book entries of examples of how you and your setting promote equality, diversity and inclusion)

The ways in which this is done is through practitioners and any adults who work with children and young people, breaking down stereotypes and showing the children positive images to help break the different stereotypes which are said about different cultural backgrounds, races, or religions. Positive images are a good way to show children and young people the importance about equality, diversity and inclusion between everyone and it will show them that all people, disabled, black white, young or old can take on responsible, important prominent roles in society and males as well as females are both equal and can equally take on domestic roles. Some people may feel as though certain roles are mostly suited towards females only, however males can do the same things too. By doing this it will bring an positive outcome for children and young people because it helps them to develop strong expectations about their personal future life and they will grow up with very positive respectful mindsets in the future.

Promoting and showing children and young people positive images also encourages positive ideas installed in them which will give them ideas of what they could possibly achieve in life regardless of their gender, race, cultural or social backgrounds or any disability they could have. According to Penny Tassoni (page 203) “You can provide positive images of a diverse range of people which show that, for example black, female and disabled people can take on responsible, active and prominent roles in society, and male people can take on creative, caring, domestic roles this helps children to develop strong expectations about their own future.” Other key ways and examples which practitioners should enforce with children and young people to ensure they are promoting positive outcomes for their well being is to help build up their self esteem as well as their inner self confidence. This is highly important as it will install the confidence and courage in children to try new experiences and activities which help them to learn and develop.

Other examples include in a setting practitioners could sit the children down altogether and show them DVD’s and video recordings of different cultural backgrounds, this is an effective way to get the children to see and understand the importance of acknowledging and respecting different cultural backgrounds and people from different religions that are different from their own. Also it is a learning experience for them because things they was previously unaware of, for example the different types of cultural foods there are in the world, through watching DVD’s and videos they would have learnt something new. Also showing children and young people diversity charts with different ranges of people and showing different people from all different backgrounds and people with disabilities, Reading books in a setting with the children about different cultures this is another example of how practitioners can help to promote equality, diversity and inclusions amongst children and young people.

This is all highly important because reading to them and showing them the pictures in the books gives them further knowledge and a better understanding of all the different people in the world. Having things such as posters hung up all around the setting, different nationality flags is another effective way of promoting equality, diversity and inclusion and these will all help to promote
positive outcomes. During meal and snack time practitioners could do something different where one specific day in the week instead of the regular food they always provide for the children everyday, they could have a variety of different cultural foods from all different types of cultures, they could encourage this at least one day a week, so this gives the children the opportunity to try something they aren’t used to and experience different types of foods they have never tried before. This again gives them a more deeper insight of all the different types of foods there are in the world and they will learn about other cultures outside of their own which is a very good way of practitioners to promote diversity and positive outcomes for them.

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