Thursday, November 28, 2013

We're in the Army NOW!

Left, left right, left.. left, left, left right...These are the marching orders of the military.  However, the military is more than just following orders. 

The military serves our country in war and peace.  In 2011, the U.S. military included over 1.4 million men and women, and 71% of them had children (Hanson and Lynch, 2013, p. 9).  When one serves in the military, the entire family serves.  Living and working near Andrews Air Force Base, Patuxent River Naval Air Station and Indian Head Naval Surface Warfare Center, military families are prevalent.  However with minimal interactions leaves one wondering is there really a difference between civilian and military families? 

Does military culture influence family dynamics off the base?  How does deployment effect children's development?  How does relocation affect families and children? Does this affect children's ability to make and keep friends?  What strategies do early childhood professionals need to utilize to support child development?


Hanson, M. J., & Lynch, E. W. (2013). Understanding families: Approaches to diversity, disability, and risk.  Baltimore, MD: Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co.


  1. This will be a very interesting research project. I have had friends over the years who were deployed that had small children. I always wondered if the parent regretted missing out on so much of their children growing up and going through the milestones. Fortunately, I have never experienced relocation, as I am sure this would definitely have an impact on the entire family. Do you have personal experience with military children?

  2. I had at least four military families throughout the years. One father was deployed and returned home during the school year. She did not say much but when we would talk about soldiers, she would talk proudly about him. I was not equipped as a teacher to deal with deployment.

  3. As Dixie stated this is a very interesting research project. My oldest sister her husband was in the military and her three girls were born when he was deployed. I never had a military family in my class so this will be very interesting to me.

  4. Melissa,
    I was so excited to see this topic!! My husband and I mentor a little boy who is 13 years old. He is currently in the Sea Cadet program which will hopefully lead to him to attending the Naval Academy in just a few years. I know how much him being in the Sea Cadet program has changed his family dynamic for the positive. I am very interested to see what research you uncover about military families and how their family dynamics impact children.
    -Sarah O'Neal

  5. Melissa,
    I grew up as a military dependent and consider myself well adjusted. I must admit my father was never deployed. It will be interesting to read your blog and learn of the research. I will have to recall my past and view how it relates to your research.
    Sharon Lloyd