Unequal Childhood Literature Review

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Unequal Childhoods, written by Annette Lareau, is an interesting study about just how different the lives of children living in different social classes truly is. Conducted in the 1990s, the study involved 88 fourth-grade children and their families, with the book following 12 of these families for more extensive and “naturalistic” observations. The study consisted of an equal number of white and African-American families from the poor, working-class, and middle-class. Throughout the study, researchers followed the daily lives of those 12 children, such as when they played with friends, eating meals, doing homework, etc., in order to see just how much your social class affects a child’s life and their future development into adulthood. While…show more content…
The study focuses on children coming from either the Lower Richmond School or Swan School. Lower Richmond School is an urban city elementary school, mainly attended by poor or working-class children. While many parents have positive views of this school, they are constantly low on supplies and even teachers, with the lower salaries than suburban schools leading to classes often being run by substitutes. This makes it harder for these children to get the education they need. Swan School, located in the suburbs, is mainly attended by middle-class children. Unlike Lower Richmond, Swan does well financially, with no shortages of teachers or supplies. Compared to Swan, Lower Richmond cannot afford to give their students as much as they would like to increase their chance of even finishing high school, much less college.(Lareau, 2011) This shows that middle-class schools are more likely to have students finish their education and go on to have better jobs, while poor and working-class schools have students who are more likely to stay confined to their social classes. While most of the children from the study who went to Swan, such as Garrett Tallinger, went to college and looked to have bright futures, none of the children in the study who went to Lower Richmond went to college, although Tyrec Taylor took four courses at a community college. Some children, such as Katie Brindle and Billy Yanelli, dropped out of high school.(Lareau, 2011) This shows just how much your social class affects your
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