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Observation Teen Project Essay

Paper type: Project Pages: 7 (1682 words)

Views: 330




SOC 312


Adolescence ranges from the ages of 13

and 19 years of age. This period is

considered the provisional stage from

adulthood to childhood. The

psychological and physical the changes

that occur in adolescence can start as

earlier as the preteen year’s. During this

period of awkwardness and innovation

adolescence tend to make unsound

decisions about school, drugs, and peers

towards their passage into adulthood .

Later I will be discussing the course

c oncepts biological transition, cognitive

transition, peer group, leisure and identity.



In conducting my research about adolescent, I went to Westmont Sunburns in Los

Angeles. It is an area that is predominantly occupied with African -Americans and

Hispanic. I saw five African -American teenagers with backpacks standing i n front of

an apartment building.

I had began my observation Monday January 14, 2019 right after school at about

3:20pm . From 320pm to 4:50pm I watched the five teenagers hang out in front of

the school talking to other students they then walked to the local liquor store, while

they were walking they came up upon some students looks as if they were going to

fight but the police road by and hit he siren on the car the kids then ran away .

When I found the kids it was about 5:20pm the students were sitting in front of and

abandoned apartment building hanging out on the steps some of the boys were

tagging on the walls they others throwing rocks at a stray dog. As the time go’s on it

about 7pm and I notice on of the boys doing something with there hands they then

pass it to one of the other boys then I see the boy put something to his lips and light it

up I see smoke in the air not sure what they are smoking but they all smoke form the

same one . Its really dark out the time is about 8 o’clock at night I am hoping that

they are in the house before 10pm Los Angeles has a curfew law that prohibits

anyone under the age of 18yrs form being outside or in public places between

10p.m. and sunrise.


• 8:20 pm in Westmont Sunburn Area of Los


• African -American middle age boys

• O ut after dark hanging in front of an

apartment building smoking

• People coming in and out of surrounding



• Adolescence involves development in five areas:

• Biological Transition – (Puberty) early maturation

involving changes in the physical appearance

• Cognitive Transition – Growth in thinking abilities

Peers Group – Common interest among the group

• Unsupervised Leisure – Indulging in adult activities

• Identity – T he way one views himself



The African American teenagers exhibited

the physical appearance of a male in

puberty. According to Laurence Steinberg

(2017), boys who are early in their maturation

began to see signs in their body like facial

hair, broad shoulders and chest, and the

deepening of there voices due to

testosterone hormones which influence the

changes . (Steinberg, 2017 p . 29)

Early -maturing boys tend to want to hang

with an older crowd because they think thy

are older than they are, finding themselves

less involved with school like ditching , poor

attendance, and behavior problems,

participating in adult activates.



According to Laurence Steinberg (2017) boys

who are showing signs of early maturing are

more likely to use drugs and alcohol.

(Steinberg, 2017. p. 31)For example, the five

boys that were being observed are in a

neighborhood outside after dark unsupervised

by adults are able to experiment with tobacco

and or marijuana.

Due to the boys socioeconomic status they

are more likely to continue to hang out after

dark and become involved in delinquent

behavior activates due to the lack of adult


They can be many reason why these five boys

are choosing to hang out and indulge in

tobacco or marijuana. Their could be

problems at home, they are experiencing

depression, the influence from the neighbor, or

non active parents.



According to Laurence Steinberg (2017) The adolescents

also experience growth in their process of thinking. They

become aware of their method of reasoning which

influence them to be more intellectual (Steinberg, 2017

p. 45) . Nevertheless, it results in more concerns about

oneself, how they look . As I observe the five teenagers

they is one in particular who seems to keep fixing his

cloths and hair asking the other boys how does he look.

He is even trying to stand like two of the boys He seem

to be self conscious about himself.

Graber and Petersen (2018) explained that they also

develop the idea that their peers are thinking about

them like the way an audience does. The

aforementioned is exhibited in lousy behavior of five

teenagers I studied. They seem to engage in smoking

because they care how their peers view them and to

appear cool . (Grabber, Peterson, 2018 pg. 55)



The cognitive transition occurs in the way one view things. Unlike

children, adolescent teenagers think more about what they can

experience despite not being seeing ( Steinberg, 2017 p. 45). They

want to be seen noticed.

The teenagers that I observed in Westmont defiantly showing

imaginary audience behavior; caring what your peers think about

you. For example, two of the boys continue to focus on there

appearance and there movements when the other three

teenagers are not seen concerned about them but about



According to Laurence Steinberg (2017)The

peer groups of teenagers during

adolescence have certain traits which

demonstrate the transition from childhood to

adulthood. Just as observed in my field

research. Unlike children peers who constitute

two or three friends, these peers groups

constitute multiple people of at least four

individuals. (Steinberg, 2017 pg. 137)

The boys that I observed you can tell from

there body language that they spend most

of their time together compared to adults like

families and teachers. They are of the same

age, and similar ethnic background.

Therefore, they have a certain status of

importance among their peers.


Observing how these five boys interact with

one another it is very different than how from

children interact with each other. According

to Laurence Steinberg (2017) indicates that

peer groups will interact and function more

when the adults are not around. Also, they

spend most of their time together as they can

stay together late after school. This is seen with

the African -Americans teenager boys.

(Steinberg, 2017 p. 138)

Graber and Petersen (2018) elaborate that

they as well share specific label like druggies

who smoke to feel good. Therefore, they can

identify themselves with others, and hence rise

in the importance of friendship. Adolescents

share feelings and concerns without fear of

betrayal . (Grabber , Peterson, 2018 pg. 122)


The youths in the puberty stage have a pattern in

the kind of activities they like. They prefer

participating in unstructured activities. Similar to

the five middle -aged African -American males,

hanging out after school where there activities

are not organized with grown -ups. When

adolescence self care for themselves after school

they are more expected to be involved in

problem behaviors, alcohol and drug use

especial late at night. This is why we haw laws like

the curfew law any one under 18 is not allowed

to be in the streets from 10pm to 6am. With is law

it would keep kids off the streets and away from

the wrong influences.

According to Laurence Steinberg (2017) this

behavior that the teen boys are demonstrating

bulling other kids, tagging, potential fights,

smoking are all very common with early –

adolescent. The boys are using this leisure time to

clam they independence from there parents this

free time allows them to participate in

dangerous behaviors and adult like activities.

(Steinberg, 2017 p. 193)

Unsupervised Leisure

As I observed the teenagers I

noticed that one of the boys was

hesitant to smoke, It looked like he

said no but the boy that was

holding it looked s if he was

encouraging him to smoke.

According to Laurence Steinberg

(2017) when adolescences are

unsupervised and are around

people who likes to hang out and

party are more likely to targeted

by there peers into pure pressure.

(Steinberg, 2017 p. 194)


When emotional transition takes place, the

teenagers undertake experimentation of

personalities to identify who they are. Therefore,

they tend to conform to their age -mate opinions

regarding dress code, music, what is cool and

how they speak.

According to Laurence Steinberg (2017) he

illustrates that adolescents have high emotional

energies to the peers whom they feel close to

compared to their parents. Unlike children who

view their parent as superior and listen to

everything they say, they stop seeing parents as

authority. This is apparent in the adolescents I

observed, they are engaging in things their

parents would not approve. There parents seem

to demonstrating uninvolved parenting not

spending time with child, and not know where

you child is. (Steinberg, 2017 p. 194)


Emotional and personality growth are the

last domains that develop during the

transition from childhood to adulthood with

a significant shift in the perception about

oneself and independence. It occurs in

early adolescence where teenagers

become more susceptible to peer pressure,

conform to their peers, decrease their

dependence on parents and become

inauthentic with peers. These behaviors are

present in my research teenagers who are

as well in their early adolescence.

According to Laurence Steinberg (2017)

asserts that in late adolescence, one

become independent from parents on

various issues and takes responsibility for their

action. They also decrease their conformity

to parent and peers and are not influenced

by their peers. Finally, they develop

openness and conscientious. (Steinberg,

2017 p. 221)


Adolescence involves development from childhood to

adulthood. A person’s appearance, thinking, socialization,

identity, and behavior are different from a child. The boys

grow facial and pubic hair, their voice deepens, and their

reproductive part becomes functional.

The thinking becomes complex as it becomes relative,

abstract, multi -dimensional and meta -cognitive. Peer

groups are important and influential. They tend to enter in

risky and unsupervised activities like the adolescent I was.

They also try different personalities with the change to less

conformity to parents and later peers.


[Comic Strip Cognitive Development]. Retrieved from


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369 -383). Psychology Press.

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adolescent -egocentrism -and -how -can -i-deal -with -it-as -a-parent -3.jpg

JR Bee, V. (Illustration Stages of puberty for boys) (2019 ). Retrieved from

stages -of-puberty -in-

boys -the -changing -male -body -3200880_FINAL -5be993d146e0fb002d313d5c.png

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adolescent -drinking -49267734.html

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conclusions -clipart -736_552.jpg

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Observation Teen Project. (2019, Dec 09). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/observation-teen-project-best-essay

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