Social Developmental Characteristics

Significant facts

The adolescent years are marked by an increased need for social relationships.  There is a strong desire for peer approval.  Adolescents are at a crossroads between parents/family and peers. They want to be more independent and make their own choices yet they still need the support of family. 

Impact on practices in the classroom

Adolescents need opportunities that include positive, healthy interactions with peers as well as adults.  They need to have the chance for freedom and independence - safely.  Activities may include debate, role plays, cooperative learning, and collaboration.

Surprising information?

Adults are actually competing for attention from adolescents.  It is a competition between peers and adults; and the adolescent is caught in the middle.  It is a time of wondering, "Where do I fit in?".
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