Early Childhood Education Journal

, Volume 41, Issue 6, pp 457-463

First online:

Exploring the Lived Experiences of Homeless Families with Young Children

  • Stephanie HintonAffiliated withUniversity of Central Oklahoma Email author 
  • , Darlinda CasselAffiliated withUniversity of Central Oklahoma

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This study researched the experiences of homeless families with young children between the ages of four and eight. Many families experience homelessness every year; therefore, it is important for early childhood educators to have an understanding of how homelessness affects families with young children so that educators can effectively serve the needs of homeless families as they seek to find more permanent situations for themselves and their young children. Many early childhood educators may not understand how homelessness affects young learners. This research sought: (1) to understand reasons families with young children become homeless; (2) to become aware of beneficial resources available to families and their perceptions of the resources; (3) and to examine the developmental effects that homeless living situations can have on young children. The outcomes of this study will be used to inform early childhood educators about practices as they seek to serve young children ages four to eight living homeless. Research suggested common themes as to why and how parents and young children are affected by homelessness.


Homelessness Young children Parental perspectives Early childhood