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Sculpting Adolescence – Ms. Monika Chhabra, Principal

Adolescence is a transitional phase of growth and development between childhood and adulthood. The World Health Organization (WHO) defines an adolescent as any person between ages 10 and 19.

Identity crisis is a common term that we normally associated with adolescence

In psychology, it is a failure to achieve ego identity during adolescence.  The term was coined by German psychologist Erik Erikson.

Important neuronal developments also take place during the adolescent year. These developments in regions of the brain such as the limbic system, is mainly responsible for generating feelings like reward seeking, emotional dependency and sleep deprivation.

Teenagers often do things if the payoff is great, and how their brains respond to that rewards, a new study suggests.

  • Volatile behavior is also a natural characteristic of teenagers.
  • The volatile nature of teenager’s is familiar to most of the parents.
  • Research indicates that a succession of hormonal changes in the brain during puberty makes teenagers to display such volatile behaviors.

As educators, we should be able to comprehend adolescent psychology so that we can help them to deal with these psychological changes.

 

What can we do as teachers?

Firstly we understanding, supportive and patient. There is nothing more important for a teenager as having a supportive adult. Teachers play a vital role in this developmental period because often teenagers are more likely to listen to them than their parents, who are perceived as enemies

Teachers should utilize student’s need for creative exploration and novelty by running interesting, engaging and inclusive lessons. It helps in allowing students to explore and build their sense of autonomy and internal locus of control. Providing a psychological safety and inclusive climate in the classroom helps teenagers learn.

 

Social and academic competition is also a very prominent behavior trait in teenagers.

Parents are powerful role models for teenagers. What you do and say guide your child’s behavior, attitudes and beliefs, now and in the long term. You can be a role model by including your child in family discussions, living a healthy lifestyle, being positive, taking responsibility for your actions and more.

Often, teenagers are hungry for positive feedback outside the class engagement and hence it’s very essential that the teachers help them satisfy their need for validation.

Teachers, Parents and Students are the three pillar of the education system. Without the other two, one cannot sustain.

 

The five leading characteristic of adolescence are:

  • Biological growth and development
  • An undefined status
  • Increased decision-making
  • Increased pressures and
  • The search for identity.

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