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S8 E6 The One About Poverty

Updated: Mar 17, 2023

As we are facing a cost of living crisis, and as many public sector workers are striking to secure urgent funding to these essential services, it feels timely to do an episode on Poverty.

  • What is it?

  • What causes it?

  • What are the effects of it?

  • What are the solutions?

  • How do we best teach it in our classrooms and how do we deal with it in our schools?

I think this episode will relate to any educator, not just RE teachers so please share it far and wide!

I chat to Sean Harris ( @SeanHarris_NE ) who is a trust improvement lead, educator, journalist and author and who is currently doing a PHd related to poverty and Louisa Harrop an advisor to the Litchfield Diocese.

  • Blair & Raver: Poverty, stress and brain development: New directions for prevention and intervention, Academic Paediatrics, 2016.

  • Hackman & Farah: Socioeconomic status and the developing brain. Trends in Cognitive Science, January 2009:

  • Hanson et al: Family poverty affects the rate of human infant brain growth, PLoS ONE 8, December 2013.

  • Harris: Doorstep disadvantage: Beyond the Pupil Premium, SecEd, May 2021:

  • Harris: Crafting curriculum with disadvantage in mind, SecEd. 2021.

  • Jensen: Teaching with Poverty in Mind: What being poor does to kids’ brains and what schools can do about it, ASCD, 2009.

  • Harris: Neurology of poverty, SecEd, 2022

  • Marmot et al: Build Back Fairer: Covid-19, Marmot Review, The Health Foundation, 2021.

  • McLaughlin, Sheridan & Lambert: Childhood adversity and neural development: Deprivation and threat as distinct dimensions of early experience, Neuroscience and Biobehavorial Reviews (47), 2014.

  • Noble, Houston & Brito: Family income, parental education and brain structure in children and adolescents, Nature Neuroscience (18), 2015:

  • Raizada, Richards, Meltzoff & Kuhl: Socioeconomic status predicts hemispheric specialisation of the left inferior frontal gyrus in young children, Neuroimage (40,3), 2008.

  • Rowland: Addressing educational disadvantage in schools and colleges: The Essex Way, Unity Research School & Essex County Council, 2021:

  • SecEd Podcast: Tackling the consequences of poverty, June 2021:

  • Wagmiller: The temporal dynamics of childhood economic deprivation and children’s achievement, Child Development Perspectives (9), 2015.

Some additional organisational links



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