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K-12 Years Revealed in Keynote at NAEHCY: Unexpected Outcomes

Posted Jan 07 2009 6:28pm

As promised, here is the next segment of my keynote at the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth. If you haven't joined NAEHCY, you ought to consider it.

As a disclaimer, this post and podcast have nothing to do with technology or Web 2.0 per se, except to help the reader gain an understanding of how a high poverty student's schematic development actually dictates the need for inquiry based methods to learn and master the content in your courses.

Many Stories Untold
In this edited podcast of my NAEHCY presentation, this section is the story of my life during my K-12 years. The fact that it takes place in 10-15 minutes makes it obvious that there are many stories untold-both positive and negative. What I tried to do was put enough detail in to paint the picture of what life is like for some of our students in terms of constant chaos and drama. Many children who are homeless have even a more intense life because of living in the streets 24/7. In my experience as a child, we moved about constantly, but managed more times than not to have some sort of place to "live." My "living in the streets days" occurred as an unaccompanied youth after I left home at age 14.

Life Changing Strategies
Embedded in this part of the story are some strategies to use with children who are experiencing poverty. My hope is that they will be useful for reaching the children in your classroom who so desperately need you to notice them and their plight.

Ask Yourself...
As you listen, ask yourself-- are the current methods and curriculum being used at your school going to equip this student to climb out of the circumstance that has been forced upon her? Will sequential, text based delivery of state mandated curriculum truly help this child become literate in the 21st century? I think you will see very quickly that with the changing demographic of students we are seeing in our classrooms, it is past time to make principled changes in the way we "do" school. Seamless integration of technology isn't a choice or option any longer. 21st Century teaching and learning needs to be happening NOW. These kids can't wait on policy changes- having access to a positive force (you) and gaining technical literacy will be the key to providing their unexpected outcomes.

Click below to play or download:

Part 2: K-12 Years Podcast

Other Resources (from the NAEHCY Website)

National Center for Homeless Education
Funded by the U.S. Department of Education, the National Center for Homeless Education is a national resource center of research and information enabling communities to successfully address the needs of homeless children and youth and their families. NCHE products include educational rights posters, parent brochures, the LEA Homeless Education Liaison Handbook, the State Coordinators' Handbook, and the NAEHCY listserv.

National Center on Family Homelessness NCFH is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to developing long-term solutions to family homelessness. The Center is committed to: (1) building a rigorous knowledge base in the areas of family homelessness and poverty; (2) creating model programs, service demonstrations and technical assistance products; and (3) disseminating information to increase public awareness and improve national, state, and local policies and programs.

The National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty NLCHP monitors and enforces compliance with the McKinney-Vento Act, providing technical assistance to attorneys, service providers, parents and educators across the country to ensure that homeless children gain access to public school. The NLCHP web site includes a self-advocacy kit, a flowchart for determining homelessness, reproducilble Q&A booklets, and many other materials.

The National Network for Youth
The National Network for Youth is dedicated to ensuring that young people can be safe and lead healthy and productive lives. In doing so, young people are championed, especially those who because of life circumstance, disadvantage, past abuse or community prejudice have less opportunity to become contributing members of their communities.

The National Policy & Advocacy Council on Homelessness NPACH is dedicated to ending homelessness through grassroots advocacy and inclusive partnerships. NPACH works to accomplish its mission by educating the public and policymakers on the causes and consequences of homelessness, creating and advocating for appropriate federal policies in collaboration with local communities, connecting community-based organizations, schools, and work places to national anti-homelessness policy through advocacy and public education initiatives.

U.S. Department of Education
The U.S. Department of Education is the federal agency charged with administration and oversight of the McKinney-Vento Act's Education for Homeless Children and Youth program.

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