Socialization Agents and Activities of Young Adolescents

By Arnon, Sara; Shamai, Shmuel et al. | Adolescence, Summer 2008 | Go to article overview

Socialization Agents and Activities of Young Adolescents

Arnon, Sara, Shamai, Shmuel, Ilatov, Zinaida, Adolescence


The aim of this research was to examine the relative importance and impact of peer groups, family, school, and community on young adolescents. The relative influence of these socialization agents were demonstrated mainly by the activities, preferences, feelings, and thoughts of the teenagers concerning the way they spend their leisure time, their preferences for help providers, and the sense of attachment to their community. This study examined "normative" adolescents, in contrast to many studies that deal with problematic behaviors and their prevention. It focuses on three elements of the youngsters' cultural background which are considered important explanatory factors of their subculture: gender, level of religiosity, and nature of their community. Participants (7th- 9th-grade adolescents) living on the Golan Heights, a peripheral area in the north of Israel.


The process of the separating from childhood dependencies and parents, and moving on to a wider social milieu with extra-familial relationships is generally considered a crucial developmental stage which the adolescent must pass through in order to achieve maturity (Roberts, 1985; Coleman, 1992). Western research has found that youth spend much less time with the family, which may reflect individualistic rather than collectivistic values with greater value placed on individualism rather than family (Larson & Verma, 1999). This distancing of youth is also from teachers and other significant adults and from official institutions (such as school and organized leisure institutions). The increasing importance of the peer group makes it an effective socialization agent, which may encourage idle activity that is negatively correlated with adolescents' school achievement and positively with higher rates of delinquency and anti-social behavior (Coleman, 1989, 1992; Larson & Verna, 1999). Group Socialization theory asserts that it is not the home but the peer environment that has lasting effects on adolescents' psychological characteristics when they become adults. Self-categorization processes of assimilation and differentiation tend to make adolescents more similar to each other within peer groups and less similar to adults (Harris, 1995). The gap leads to intergenrational conflict. Adolescents threaten the authority of parents, educators, and traditional institutions. According to social control theory (Hirschi, 1969), the detachment of young persons from parents and community institutions of conventional society weaken social control over them. In its moderate mode the conflict is a "generation gap" and in its extreme mode it is a "generation war." On the other hand, from a positive point of view, a degree of separateness from parents and other adults is essential for establishing independence; generally it is normal and moderate (Chen & Farruggia, 2002; Coleman, 1989; Hendry et al., 1993).

Peer groups act as a source of behavioral standards, particularly where parental influence is weak. Acceptance by peers is perceived as important especially by young adolescents, with conformity to the group the price that has to be paid. It is sustained by peer pressure which transmits group norms and fosters loyalty to the group (Hendry et al., 1993).

Leisure and Free Time of Young Adolescents

Leisure is a central sphere of life, described by Roberts (1985) as intrinsically satisfying experiences that individuals derive from recreation during their free time. Free time and leisure activities are major facets of adolescents' lives. In developing and postindustrial societies, it is schoolwork that most clearly replaces household and paid labor in youths' time use. The amount of time spent on schoolwork is inversely related to the amount of time devoted to nearly every other activity, particularly leisure activities (Larson & Verma, 1999; Zeijl et al. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Cite this article

Cited article

Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25,

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Socialization Agents and Activities of Young Adolescents


Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25,

    New feature

    It is estimated that 1 in 10 people have dyslexia, and in an effort to make Questia easier to use for those people, we have added a new choice of font to the Reader. That font is called OpenDyslexic, and has been designed to help with some of the symptoms of dyslexia. For more information on this font, please visit

    To use OpenDyslexic, choose it from the Typeface list in Font settings.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search


    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.