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Adolescent Development

Adolescent Development

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Adolescent Development

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  1. Adolescent Development Oklahoma Cooperative Extension ServiceCore In-Service December 3, 2009 Ron Cox, Ph.D., Family Science Specialist Debbie Richardson, Ph.D., Parenting Assistant Extension Specialist Human Development & Family Science Oklahoma State University

  2. Welcome • Introductions • Overview of In-service

  3. In-Service Objectives Extension Educators will be able to: • Identify and understand theories and principles of development, transitions, and growth for the pre-teen and teenage years (ages 10-18) including physical, cognitive, emotional, and social development. • Identify and address risk and resilience factors for pre-teens and teens. • Identify and address common parenting and youth development issues • Identify and apply appropriate, available resources.

  4. Some Definitions • Adolescence – time between childhood & adulthood • Early adolescence – about 10-14 years of age • Middle adolescence – about 15-17 • Late adolescence – about age 18 to early 20’s Next to early childhood, the early adolescent period is characterized by the most developmental change at many different levels

  5. Areas of Development • Cognitive & brain • Physical & sexual • Social & emotional

  6. Physical and Sexual Development

  7. Physical Development • Most rapid physical development since infancy • Puberty • Growth spurt and changes in body composition • Changes in circulatory and respiratory systems - Increase in strength and stamina

  8. Growth & Body Composition • Height • in 1 year, boys can gain ave. 4.1”, girls 3.5” • average teen grows 12” taller • Weight • increased muscle in boys, body fat in girls • Shifts in body proportions • Hardening of bones • Sequence of growth starts in extremities (hands, feet) and moves inward with torso growing last in size

  9. Immense changes can result in… • Clumsiness & awkwardness • Aches & pains • Sensitivity to body image • Tiredness – need sleep

  10. Puberty • Development into sexual maturity • Hormones controlling physical development are activated • Develop primary &secondary sex characteristics • Become fertile • Experience increased sexual libido

  11. Sex Characteristics Primary - Organs that allow reproduction Secondary - External characteristics that signal maturation; related to but not directly involved in reproduction • Girls – menstruation, breast development, body hair • Boys – development of testes, changes in vocal cord size and deepening of voice, body hair

  12. Puberty – Internal Process • Endocrine glands produce & regulate levels of hormones in blood • Hypothalamus, pituitary gland, and gonads (ovaries, testicles) operate in a “feedback loop”, producing and maintaining levels of sex hormones (androgens and estrogens) mainly responsible for primary & secondary changes • Both androgens and estrogens are produced by each gender –boys more androgens, girls more estrogens

  13. Puberty – Internal Process • Pituitary gland secretes hormones that influence thyroid and adrenal cortex to release hormones that stimulate overall body growth • Hormones perform both organization and activation roles • organize way brain is shaped as it is growing • activate changes in behavior at different times during life • activate changes in secondary sex characteristics

  14. Timing of Puberty • Girls tend to experience pubertal changes earlier than boys by 24 months on average • Internal changes may begin: • about age 7-8 in girls and up to about 13 • about age 9.5-11 in boys up to about 13.5 • Hormone production levels off by about age 15 for girls and 16-17 for boys Turn to Nebraska fact sheet Understanding the Physical Changes of Puberty

  15. Timing of Physical Maturation • Each individual follows a unique path to adult physical maturity - Points in physical development may be very different for individual youth between 10 and 15 • Usually by 16-17, any differences will level off • Being early or late developer can be stressful when compared to timing of their friends • Early Developers • Tends to be advantageous for boys – sports, social standing • More problematic for girls – body image, attention from others, lower self-esteem, adjustment to school transitions

  16. Influences on PubertyTiming & Tempo • Primary influence is one’s genes • Most important external factors: Nutrition & Health • Puberty occurs earlier for children who have been well-nourished and without serious illnesses • Also tends to occur earlier for teens growing up in conflict-ridden families and for females in father-absent homes • Excessive exercise is associated with delays

  17. Sexuality Challenges • Sexual maturity is happening earlier (e.g., age of menarche) • Marriage is happening later • Children are sexually mature in a physical sense long before they are capable of entering into mature, adult relationships • Media and other social influences • Gender identity

  18. Teens & Sleep • Rapid growth and change requires enough rest • Hormones may affect sleep needs • Tend to stay up later and wake up later • When left to their own schedule, tend to stay awake until 1:00 a.m. and sleep until about 10:00 a.m. • Need about 9 ½ hours sleep each day/night • Concerns that teens do not get enough sleep

  19. Eating • Basal metabolic rate decreases about 15% during puberty • Obese adolescents will likely continue to be obese as adults (about 80%) • Disordered eating patterns are common among adolescents

  20. Social and Emotional Development

  21. Changes that Influence Social & Emotional Development • Biological/hormonal transformations • Psychological shifts that accompany emergence of sexuality • Increased capacity for abstract thinking • Educational/school transitions • Shifting relationships with family and peers • Heightened competition, social comparison, and self-assessment • Shifting social roles and expectations • More independence and unsupervised time • Coping with stresses of change

  22. 5 Primary Issues of Adolescence • Establishing a personal identity • Establishing autonomy • Establishing intimacy • Becoming comfortable with own sexuality • Achievement (Steinberg, 2007)

  23. Erikson’s Stages of Psychosocial Development 7 to 11 years Industry vs. Inferiority Adolescence Identity vs. Role Confusion Adulthood Intimacy vs. Isolation Learn to be competent and productive or feel inferior and unable to do anything well. Try to figure out “Who am I?” Establish sexual, ethnic, and career identities, or are confused about what future roles to play. Develops secure intimate relationships and love, or remain in shallow relationships and experience isolation or loneliness

  24. 4 Basic Questions of Adolescence • Who am I? sexuality, social roles • Am I normal? do I fit in • Am I competent? good at something that is valued • Am I lovable and loving? by someone besides parents To encourage positive development, it is important to: • Give adolescents opportunities to work on their own answers to these questions. • Provide safe environments where adolescents feel free to explore such difficult issues.

  25. Establishing IdentityDevelopmental Tasks • New and more mature relations with others in one’s age group (male & female) • Gender social role • Accepting physical body • Emotional independence from parents & other adults • Preparing for future - marriage & family life, education, economic career • Acquiring set of values and ethical system to guide behavior; developing an ideology • Desiring and achieving socially responsible behavior

  26. Identity • Establishing a sense of identity doesn’t occur much before age 18 • Late teens/early 20’s are very important period in identity development – individuals move from one identity status to another • Gender identity is important component

  27. Autonomy • Becoming an independent and self-governing person within relationships • Not becoming completely independent from others or “rebellion” • Necessary to become self-sufficient as adult in society

  28. 3 Types of Autonomy Emotional Behavioral Value Changes that occur in close relationships, especially parents Ability to make independent decisions and carry through Developing set of principles about right & wrong that guide one’s thinking and behavior

  29. Intimacy • Close relationships with others that are open, honest, caring, trusting; Intimacy ≠ Sex • Usually first learned in context of same-sex friendships then utilized in romantic relationships • Pre-adolescent friendships are more activity based • Friendships provide setting to practice social skills with those who are equals; learn how to begin, maintain, and terminate relationships • As emphasis on peer groups grows, so does emphasis on close relationships, same sex and opposite sex • Early secure bonds (attachment) with caregivers are psychosocially healthier than those with insecure attachments

  30. Relationships with Family • Seek more independence, autonomy, privacy • Realize parents are not all-knowing and all powerful • May question family rules and roles leading to conflicts over issues such as dress, appearance, chores, dating • Parents and teens also have fewer interactions and do fewer things together – “distancing” • They often want to fill with close relationships with other, non-familial adults – to share ideas and gain wisdom • Without other close adults, may turn disproportionately to their peers for guidance • Even though they may not admit it, parents are still most important

  31. Relationships with Peers In early adolescence… • Give priority to social activities with peers, peer acceptance, and appearance • Conformity to peers peaks • Pressure from peers to engage in misconduct increases • Tend to agree with parents’ views on important issues (morality, education, politics, religion) while peer have more influence on appearance, music, activities • Tend to seek out friends similar to them • Peer group acts more to reinforce existing strengths and weaknesses rather than change their characteristics

  32. Peer Groups • More peer contact with opposite sex friends • Increase in functioning without adult supervision • Large peer groups, or crowds, form defined by reputation & stereotypes, sense of identity • Cliques – small groups of 2-12 peers, usually same sex, age, race, social class; common activities or friendships • By 9th grade – very rigid crowd structure, peer pressure is highest • Later adolescence - Crowd structure becomes less rigid

  33. Emotions • Perceive feelings more intensely and give into impulses • Often feel sad, overwhelmed, depressed, and lonely • Easily feel embarrassed • Overly concerned with how they look, especially height, weight, skin, and body shape • Self-critical • Analyze and worry about details of conversations, behaviors • Improved ability to use speech to express emotions • Tendency to return to childish behavior, particularly when stressed • Fear of losing parents

  34. Emotions About age 11-12 13-14 15 16-17 extreme emotionality begins often irritable, excite easily, more likely to explode than control their emotions try harder to cover up their feelings, more apt to be moody and withdrawn more capable of taking a calmer approach to life, experience fewer worries, less moodiness

  35. Moodiness • Moods tend to fluctuate more than adults - bounce from silly, happy, exuberant to withdrawn, grouchy, sad • Direct connection between hormones and moods is not very strong • May be the fluctuation rather than dramatic increase in hormones that affects moodiness • Mood swings seem to parallel changes in activities • While moods of girls are related to hormone levels, life stressors seem to be more important predictors • Individuals have different patterns of mood changes – frequency of fluctuations, happiness, negativity

  36. Self-Concept & Self-Esteem • By age 10, children are typically far less optimistic and self-concept regarding their abilities and expectations for success tend to decline • Skills are not developing as rapidly as earlier in childhood • Receive more “failure feedback” • More able to reflect on their performances, compare to other peers, and learn that current failures may be clues to future performances • Some children experiencing more frustration and becoming more pessimistic about their abilities may be hesitant to try new things with which they are unlikely to succeed at first

  37. Self-Concept & Self-Esteem • Confidence in physical appearance and social acceptance (from peers) is often a more important predictor of their self-esteem than confidence in their cognitive/ academic competence • Adolescents’ feelings about self fluctuate day-to-day, especially in early adolescence • Baseline self-esteem generally remains fairly stable throughout adolescence • Context-dependent • Overall, self-esteem is enhanced by receiving approval of others and by succeeding in school • Adolescents with at least one close friendship report higher levels of self-esteem than those who do not

  38. Achievement • Home environment is strongest predictor of educational and occupational achievement • Parents who encourage school success, set high standards, support consistent values, involvement in education • Quality of home environment, amount of exposure to culturally enriching experiences, social support and encouragement • Friends who value school success vs. negative orientation toward school • School environments also influence

  39. Risk and Resilience Factors

  40. Individual Factors • Temperament • Personality • Past behaviors • Experiences • Mental health

  41. Major Aspects Parenting Behavior Parental Responsiveness Parental Demandingness • Love • Warmth • Nurturance • Discipline • Control

  42. Parenting Styles • Authoritarian– autocratic, highly demanding and directive but not responsive. • Authoritative– both demanding and responsive, firm and supportive rather than punitive. • Permissive– indulgent, nondirective, more responsive than demanding. • Unengaged– uninvolved, low responsiveness and low demanding. Baumrind, 1991

  43. Influences of Parenting • Combination of warmth and moderate levels of control healthy identity development • Opportunities for personal autonomy and encouraging role in family decision making positive outcomes such as self confidence, school satisfaction and adjustment, moral reasoning, responsibility, social & academic skills • Coercive, authoritarian parenting more dependent, passive, weaker social skills, highly rebellious responses, lower self-esteem, less curious, more peer oriented • Permissive and indifferent parenting more influenced by peers, less mature and responsible, impulsive, delinquent behavior

  44. Bi-directional Child ↔ Parent influence each other’s behavior

  45. Family Environment • Accelerating effort by youths to control their own lives is accompanied by pressure on family to renegotiate power balance between parent and child • Fit between family environment and youth’s developmental needs is critical to successful adaptation by both parents and adolescents • Parents ability to adjust to adolescent’s changing needs with relatively little conflict

  46. Peer Relationships • Peers provide feedback about development that cannot be gained from adults – facilitate development of autonomy, intimacy, achievement, and sexuality • Become friends both because of prior similarities and they become like each other the more they interact (selection & socialization) • Peers can have negative or positive influence • Peer relationships as protective factors – see Resource Update Abstract • Poor peer relations predicts low academic achievement, delinquent behavior, emotional and health problems

  47. School • School, academic and classroom environments – organization and structure, relationships and interactions with teachers, classroom practices • Transition to junior high and high school triggers negative changes for some youths • Declining grades strongly predict declines in self-perceptions and academic motivation

  48. Community and Neighborhood • Shape norms to which adolescents are exposed • Influence quality of relationships with others including their parents • Facilitate or limit access to economic and institutional resources • Collective efficacy – extent to which neighbors trust each other, share common values, monitor activities • Stressors – poverty, violence

  49. “Research studies…suggest that family, school, and other organized environments that are responsive and developmentally sensitive to the changes in young adolescents’ needs and desires can facilitate positive development during the turbulent early-adolescent years.” (Eccles, 1999)