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Lecture 20

PSYC 205 Lecture 20: Peer Relationships

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PSYC 205
Kim Elizabeth

4-10 Peer Relationships 4-10 Peer Relationships Overview: • Development of peer relationships • Peer acceptance Are peers important? • Parent-child have vertical relationships: unequal power in relationship; parent has more power and authority than child o Generational differences ▪ Relatable: parents may not have experienced some of the same influences directly as peers have • Horizontal relationships: equal power in the relationships (knowledge, responsibility) o Can be models for us, teach you new things • Serve many functions o Play companions ▪ Paiget’s theory of moral development: process of interacting in peer groups and constructing rules as a group is an important piece of moral development and socialization o Models o Instructors and critics ▪ When someone is not following the rules or behaving not in line with the peer group, they’re likely to say something o Social comparison: comparing to others and in part determines sense of self worth ▪ Paying attention to how others do as a point of comparison o Confidants ▪ Can be more open with peers than a parent Development of Peer Relations Infancy-toddler years (0-2 years) • Increase in social interaction with age • Understanding of their influence is drawn from observing interactions with peers • 6-12 month age: babies often like looking at other babies and are interested in paying attention to them • 12-18 months age: children select and prefer certain peers over others o Prefer to engage more with them or smile at them • 18-24 months age: more coordinated interactions with peers that are more social o Not just looking at peers in curiosity or interest o May imitate each other’s behaviors o See more pretend play with friends or someone they show preference towards Preschool years (2-5 years) • Increase in complex, reciprocal peer interactions • Types of play (Parten) changes in these years • Increase in complex, reciprocal peer interactions • Types of play (Parten) changes in these years o Solitary play: a child in a room full of other children, but they’re playing alone o Parallel play: children are playing the same task and next to each other, but are not actually interacting with each other ▪ Playing alone, near each other o Associative play: children are playing the same task, but may be talking to each other or sharing materials, but still aren’t working on the task together ▪ Playing Legos, and one kid is playing with only blue Legos, so the other kid gives him blue Legos to work on his piece by himself o Cooperative play: children play together with a common goal • Changes in preschoolers’ play: overtime, children’s play gets more complex and children play in complex ways at young ages o Solitary play decreases as children get older o Parallel play decrease as children get older o Associative play increases with age o Cooperative play increases with age Elementary school years • Complex cooperative, complex, and reciprocal play • 7-10 years: kids engage in more formal games with rules • Start to see formation of peer groups o Regularly interacting with the same people ▪ Eat lunch together, play on the playground together o Start to take on a more structured organization ▪ Group may have a leader or norms ▪ Consequences for those who don’t follow rules ▪ Rules are guided by children, not imposed by adults Adolescence • Sharp increase in time spent with peers o Have more independence ▪ Can stay out later, more mobile, access to car ▪ Parents give kids more freedom • Cliques: small groups of friends around 3-9 members, typically same gender; organized around self-perceived interests, similarities; members spend a lot of time together o Formed by adolescence, not created by parents o Advantages: support structure, sense of belonging, help develop sense of identity o Disadvantage: peer pressure, engage in behaviors you wouldn’t do outside the context of this group, restricts socialization with other peers if there are rules about it, feelings of rejection or exclusion for people outside the group • Crowds: larger, more loosely organized groups; based on stereotyped reputations; not self-chosen, assigned to individual based on consensus of peer group o Ex: jock, nerds o Members labeled as the same group may not spend very much time together ▪ Jock crowd – one person on the swim team doesn’t hang out with someone on the soccer team • Cliques spend a lot of time together, crowds may not necessarily spend a lot of time together • Cliques spend a lot of time together, crowds may not necessarily spend a lot of time together Measuring peer acceptance • Sociometric measures (Coie & Dodge, 1988): measures where you have peers report on each other; measures of likeability o Nominations technique ▪ Positive nominations: classmates children like most ▪ Negative nominations: classmates children like least • Children are categories into 5 basic groups based on peer acceptance o Popular: kids who receive many positive nominations and few negative nominations; kids that are well liked by peers, regardless of “status” o Rejected: kids who receive many negative nominates and few positive nominations; often are aggressive or withdrawn o Controversial: kids who receive many positive and negative nominations; bullies often fall in this category; liked and admired by inner circle, but disliked by others; often, high status individuals fall in this category (
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