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Word Count: 1,267
Most modern teenagers are both typically confused adolescents in the adult world and status-conscious members of their peer groups This confusion affects their behaviors and attitudes tremendously in their daily life I shall discuss the observed social behavior of teens at a local middle school I will discuss defining characteristics of adolescent behavior gender differences and consider the consequences of approaching the group I will also describe behaviors that I found interesting consider if these behaviors have a purpose and explain how my data is consistent or inconsistent with theoretical descriptions of adolescents with their peers I went to a local middle school to gain some insight as to the social behaviors of teens It was lunch time and this crowd I observed had well defined cliques Out on the school courts were groups of teens characterized by members being similar to one another in age gender race and social status also in their types of interest and activities These cliques seemed interaction based as the kids were playing basketball on the court soccer on the field girls picking daisies younger girls chasing boys among many other things The adolescents under observation are in what is called a formal academic subsystem shaped by the school administration faculty curriculum classrooms grades and rules Students in this group are concerned with intellectual pursuits knowledge achievement and making the honor roll In this system seniors outrank freshmen and the honor roll student outranks the D student but the degree varies from school to school In some schools good students are rejected socially especially if they also manifest undesirable personality traits other students may refer to them as nerds geeks or losers In-school adolescent societies also may be divided further into distinct subsystems in which adolescents participate and in which they are assigned status positions It was very clear the distinction between the cliques by the clothes that were worn The jocks had their distinctive jock wear the
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