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Young Adolescents. Who are they and how do we teach them?. “In no other stage of the life cycle, are the promises of finding oneself and the threat of losing oneself so closely allied.” -Erik Erikson.

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Young adolescents

Young Adolescents

Who are they and how do we teach them?


“In no other stage of the life cycle, are the promises of finding oneself and the threat of losing oneself so closely allied.”

-Erik Erikson


“Young adolescents are at one moment coordinated and awkward, shy and aggressive, attentive and distracted, astute and absentminded.”

- M.A. James


John hill s framework for understanding early adolescence
John Hill’s Framework for Understanding Early Adolescence awkward, shy and aggressive, attentive and distracted, astute and absentminded.”

  • Primary Changes

    • Biological Changes

    • Psychological Changes

    • Changes in Social Definition

  • Secondary Changes – Psychosocial

    • Attachment

    • Autonomy

    • Sexuality

    • Intimacy

    • Achievement

    • Identity

  • Settings

    • Family

    • Peer

    • School


  • Young adolescence is marked by
    Young Adolescence is marked by: awkward, shy and aggressive, attentive and distracted, astute and absentminded.”

    • Profound and rapid changes

    • Tremendous variability

    • Changes occur irregularly

    • Race, poverty, or ethnicity may play a vital role

    • Areas of development are intertwined

    • Growing and changing thinking capacity

    • Developing sexual awareness

    • Appearance and body image issues

    • Peer acceptance becomes important

    • Burgeoning moral development


    Characteristics of young adolescents
    Characteristics of Young Adolescents: awkward, shy and aggressive, attentive and distracted, astute and absentminded.”

    Physical Development

    Cognitive-Intellectual Development

    Wide range of intellectual development

    Transition from concrete to abstract thinking

    Curious

    Prefer active learning experiences

    Enjoy interaction during learning experiences

    Excel with real-life learning

    Begin to develop intra-personal intelligence

    Keen observers of adults

    • Rapid, irregular growth

    • Awkward, uncoordinated movement

    • Restlessness and fatigue

    • Need to release energy

    • Appearance of secondary sex characteristics

    • Bodily changes magnified in comparison

    • Physically vulnerable


    Characteristics of young adolescents1
    Characteristics of Young Adolescents: awkward, shy and aggressive, attentive and distracted, astute and absentminded.”

    Moral Development

    Psychological Development

    Self-preoccupied

    Fluctuation of self-esteem levels

    Self-conscious and highly sensitive

    Psychologically vulnerable

    Develop traditional sex-role behaviors

    Desire recognition for their positive behavior and achievements

    • Transition from self-centered reasoning to other or principle oriented reasoning

    • Idealistic – want to make the world a better place

    • See “shades of gray” in issues

    • Quick to see others’ flaws

    • Influenced by adults with whom they have interaction


    Characteristics of young adolescents2
    Characteristics of Young Adolescents: awkward, shy and aggressive, attentive and distracted, astute and absentminded.”

    Social-Emotional Development

    • Strong need for approval

    • Concerned about peer acceptance

    • Overreact

    • Follow fads

    • Need alone time

    • Experiment with new behaviors and identities

    • Mood swings

    • Exhibit immature behavior

    • Socially vulnerable


    Educational implications

    • Cross content area thematic units awkward, shy and aggressive, attentive and distracted, astute and absentminded.”

    • Exploratory coursed

    • Teaching approaches that embrace their diversity

    • Assessment and evaluation that promote learning

    • Interdisciplinary teams that support meaningful relationships

    • Health, wellness and safety policies

    • Guidance and support services

    Educational Implications

    Create a safe, supportive educational environment

    Active engagement of students and teachers

    Establish mentoring/advisorship programs

    School-Family connection

    Relevant, challenging curriculum


    Your Subtopics Go Here awkward, shy and aggressive, attentive and distracted, astute and absentminded.”

    To change the world, teach a young adolescent.

    - National Middle School Association


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