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Identity: A Path to Self-Esteem

by
Gwendolyn Hampton


Contents of Curriculum Unit 84.05.06:

To Guide Entry


At sometime someone has probably told you to “just be yourself”. This cliché implies two things: that the task is simple and even logical: and that being oneself is enough. If it were as simple as it seems, we would never have to worry how to act in new situations or question whether the self we presented to others was appropriate.

Self acceptance is a springboard for all our successes and failures. It is a particularly difficult task for the adolescent. The familiar and comfortable self we knew in childhood is in a state of change. All the changes in his body (i.e. sexual development, physical size, and muscular development) and changes in his cognitive development necessitate a modification of his childhood self. He is constantly told by others that he is growing up, and with this growth comes new responsibilities, certain rights and advantages, and expected behaviors. Added to the changes and expectations is the conflict that arises between the internalization of values accepted by society and the need to reject those values in favor of what his conscience tells him is right or wrong. Consequently, he begins to ask questions such as: “Who am I?” “What do I believe in?” “Would others like me if they knew what kind of person I am?”

These changes and new attitudes of mind are a source of anxiety for the adolescent, partly because he does not have a clearly defined sense of self and cannot instantaneously become an adult, and he has to learn to accept his particular person. Until he can get through these obstacles, he is apt to have low self-esteem.

This unit has as its major focus: raising the self-esteem of early adolescents. My interest in this topic derives from a three-year observation of incoming sixth grade classes. There are three groups of students that stand apart from the others. They are the low-achievers, the socially disadvantaged, and the students who are discipline problems. One personality factor that is common to most students in these three groups is their low self esteem. Efforts to bolster their self-esteem have generally failed because they are unable to recognize any worthwhile accomplishment they’ve made.

A familiar technique used with low-achievers is based on the success factor. Most teachers realize that success is an important factor in improving the self-image. In their goal to provide successful experiences, teachers sometimes only call on the low-achiever to respond to questions when they are likely to know the answers. Another example of this misuse of success is assigning activities which aren’t challenging and provide no opportunity for the student to practice a higher level of thinking. Students can “see through” this sham. They know that the praise they received does not measure up to the praise another student might receive for completing a more difficult activity. The problem is further complicated by the teasing and disparaging remarks made by other students. Thus, the word “can’t” is engraved on the minds of these students.

This curriculum unit is intended for teachers of early adolescents. It is divided into three sections. The first section provides an overview of traits that are characteristic of adolescents seeking identity. If teachers are familiar with adolescent problems, they can guide them toward understanding that their struggles are not unique but are a normal part of human development.

The second section includes a discussion of selected readings. Books are a main source of information for the adolescent reader. Through these readings, he can discover people who are much like himself. He can also discover how they solved their problems.

The final section includes additional activities teachers can use to raise the self-esteem of their students.

Overview

The act of searching for oneself is a complex and difficult process. It is further complicated by some confusion as to what the self is. Luella Cole says a definition of self should recognize the presence of unconscious elements in the motivations and needs of an individual; as well as recognize the conscious efforts to make adjustments within the world and derive an identity which has continuity, consistency, and adaptability.

In reworking his identity there are several traits that are characteristic of the early adolescent:

1. He is critical of others yet sensitive to their criticisms. He feels their criticisms are unjust because they don’t really understand him.
2. He values his solitude for it allows him to think without distraction. At home he might seek refuge in his room. In school he might find a quiet corner.
3. He is preoccupied with his body and self. The changes which take place at the onset of pubescence in size, body proportions, and secondary sexual characteristics generally occur rapidly. Understandably, the body attains a new value. When physical changes are not concurrent with sexual development, the adolescent is likely to perceive this imbalance as evidence of sexual inadequacy.
4. He experiences swings in mood from elation to depression. These moods are usually the result of successes or failures in personal relationships or school work.
5. He rebels against adults and their values. This derives from his fear of losing his individuality. Conflicts may arise because of dress styles, dating privileges, or eating habitats.
6. He gravitates toward his peer group. The group provides him with a sense of belonging. But in seeking admission into the group, he must comply with the dictates of the group.
7. He reevaluates his stand on issues such as: religion, drugs, sex, and world affairs. He wants to feel certain his moral standards reflect his values and not those of his parents.
Given this picture of the internal problems the adolescent has to contend with, we can now examine the effect they have on his self-esteem.

Esteem refers to an individual’s satisfaction with his identity; his over-all judgment of himself. It may range from high to low.

The way in which an individual perceives himself is of real importance to the character of his behavior. People tend to act as they perceive themselves to be. When youngsters have feelings of unworthiness, weakness, or inferiority, they might display delinquent behaviors to mask their real feelings. Sometimes this behavior is a way of communicating to others that they feel lonely, unloved, ignored, inadequate, or less than a person.

Other behaviors that might occur as a result of low self-esteem are belligerence, passivity, defiance of authority figures, and alienation.

There is no easy recipe for raising the esteem, but parents, peers, and teachers have considerable effect on how children perceive themselves.

Individuals sometimes evaluate themselves on the basis of information conveyed within the family. In some families the criteria for acceptability might be beauty, athletic prowess, or intelligence. Children live up to the expectations of their parents. When they fail to meet these expectations, they are likely to have poor self-images. Therefore, it is important that parental expectations be realistic and reasonable. The child who has parents that take pride in him for being what he is will have higher self-esteem than one whose parents are never satisfied.

Family attitudes toward body image also affect self-esteem. Our culture has preconceived standards of the ideal body. It is slim, well-proportioned, unblemished, and lacking any defects. When parents overemphasize these standards, youngsters who are obese, extremely thin, physically disabled, or suffering from skin disorders are destined to fall short of those standards and have low self-esteem.

Another component of family life affecting the level of self-esteem in adolescents is the attitude and character of parents. Janice Gibson cites Stanley Coppersmith’s experimental findings of self-esteem in boys. His findings revealed that children are likely to have high self-esteem when their parents have a clear definition of their roles, are well adjusted, are aware of their children’s needs and interested in nurturing those needs, and are accepting of them.

The need to belong and be approved of by his peers is another of the adolescent’s deepest needs. In Adolescence Today, Dacey cites these purposes of the peer group as summarized by Rogers:

1. The “radar” function. Adolescents use their peers to test out ideas and behaviors. The feedback they get is used to change the behaviors as needed.
2. Replacement for father. Most teenagers seek independence from parental control and judgment, but the need for a father figure remains. The group leader often serves as surrogate father.
3. Support for independence. In seeking their emancipation from their parents, adolescents often feel guilty and fear that their parents will reject them. The peer group provides the needed support because its members share similar problems.
4. Ego building. The peer group makes one feel good about himself at a time when his self-esteem is low.
5. Psychic attachment. Peers fill the need for companionship and security.
6. Values orientation. The peer group is used as a means of solving problems. Adolescents can test various value systems, discuss them, and choose from a number of options.
7. Status setting. The group lets the adolescent know how important or unimportant he is; there by giving him a more realistic image of how others perceive him.
8. Negative identity. Sometimes the adolescent joins the group to rebel or prove a point to someone else and not because the group’s members share the same preoccupations and problems as he.
9. The avoidance of adult requirements. When adult attitudes and values conflict with those of the peer group, the latter often wins out.
Rejection by one’s peers can very often cause low self-esteem because youngsters are not self-reliant enough to stand alone. Social rejection might stem from personality factors such as shyness, selfishness, dependence, and prudery; or superficial matters of dress, manners, attitudes, and appearance. Any trait that deviates from the norm might relegate the adolescent to social limbo.

Self-esteem is also affected by the experiences children have in school. Many educational programs are competitive and provide numerous opportunities for children to measure themselves against others in terms of intelligence, physical skills, and popularity. This measurement can have both positive and negative effects on self-image.

As teachers, we can help adolescents by setting expectations that are appropriate for the age level and intelligence ability, stressing positive activities and playing down negative ones, and explaining what is happening to them.

It we understand the point of view of this age group, we know that they need opportunities to act independently, but at the same time, feel a sense of belonging; they need opportunities to verbalize their conflicts, frustrations, and other emotional difficulties; and they need to know we are genuinely interested in them.

Readings

It is important that adolescents know that the road they’re traveling has been traveled by countless numbers of teenagers and is being traveled by many now. The feeling of aloneness can best be eradicated through reading and group discussions. This section includes discussions of readings which highlight problems faced by adolescents today. Sample lesson plans and activities planned around the readings are an addendum to this section of the unit.

These selections can be used for enrichment in reading, to teach social skills in social studies, and to reinforce creative and written expression in language arts.

We are living in a period of change. This is evidenced by the increase in violent crimes, drug abuse, and premarital sex; high rate of unemployment; discord on moral and religious issues; and the break-down in family structure. Every individual’s life is directly or indirectly affected by these changes. In order to cope with these problems, students must learn to make effective decisions. Paula Danziger’s novel, The Cat Ate My Gymsuit, provides an opportunity for students to observe how a contemporary makes decisions. While the problems and changes are not as profound as the ones stated herein, the skills can be transferred to any dilemma the child might encounter.

Sixth graders might especially enjoy reading this novel because it describes a teenager with a negative self-image. She is conscious of her body image and invents one hundred excuses for not dressing for gym. They should relate to the character’s feelings because many of them are self-conscious about wearing shorts, undressing in the locker room, and taking showers. This would be a prime time to discuss the reasons they feel as they do and guide them toward discovering ways in which to change these negative feelings into positive ones.

The Trouble With Thirteen, by Betty Miles, is included in the required reading because it gives recognition to feelings about divorce, jealousy, separation, and puberty. The story tells of two friends’ struggle to maintain their friendship despite one friend’s move to another city. Class discussions about friendship will allow students to discern those qualities that ensure and destroy friendships. Discussing feelings about divorce, jealousy, separation, and puberty allows students to compare and contrast their feelings with those of their classmates.

Psychosomatic illness and adolescent conflict in the form of rebellion are the underlying themes of Judy Blume’s novel, Then Again, Maybe I Won’t. The story is told by Tony, a sensitive thirteen year old with problems. His problems begin after his father invents a new product and makes the family rich. His anxiety is caused by his friend’s thievery; the shabby manner in which his mother treats his grandmother and her obsession with the family’s new lifestyle and rise to social prominence; and his preoccupation with sex. Whenever he encounters a problem he can’t handle, he experiences severe stomach cramps. This theme provides an opportunity for teachers to introduce students to the various support systems within the home, school, and community. Youngsters need to know that they are not alone; but there are people who can help them in crisis situations.

In discussing Joel, Tony’s friend, students may not be able to initially determine the cause of his stealing, but they should note that it is not out of necessity. By delving into his character (listing character traits); studying his behavior patterns (attitude and actions); and evaluating comments he makes about his parents, students might arrive at logical explanations for his stealing.

The final selection is a poem entitled “My Friend, Leona” from People I’d Like to Keep by Mary O’Neill. In the poem the speaker describes her friend. Leona is a very imaginative girl. She uses her imagination to mask her true feelings about poverty, her absent father, her mother’s need to work, her appearance, and her living conditions. This poem paints a vivid picture of some one with low self-esteem.

The task of raising one’s self-esteem cannot be accomplished in a short time. Individuals must realize that it is on-going and that one’s esteem may fluctuate with each experience that yields success or failure. However, when they have a more realistic image of themselves; understand the nature of the many changes they’re experiencing; discover contemporaries who share similar conflicts; and realize that parents and teachers share a sincere interest in their well-being, they are likely to have a higher opinion of themselves.

The success of this unit will be determined by the content and tone of a personal essay written by each student entitled “Everything You Wanted to Know About Me, But Didn’t Ask.”

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LESSON PLAN #1

(The Cat Ate My Gymsuit: Decision Making)

OBJECTIVE: To familiarize students with the basic concepts of effective decision making.

MATERIALS: Copy of decision making guide, copy of decision dilemma

PROCEDURE:

1. Introduction and motivation
____Introduce the lesson by discussing the numerous decisions boys and girls make daily: big decisions; little decisions; easy decisions; difficult decisions; right decisions; and wrong decisions. Explain that in making decisions we sometimes consider the good and bad things that might happen as a result of our choice. Identify these possible outcomes of a decision as consequences.
2. Development of concepts
____a. write the following questions on the board, and discuss the answers.
________What was Marcy’s problem?
________How did she attempt to solve it?
________Did she make a good decision?
____b. Ask students to think of two alternative solutions Marcy might have chosen.
____c. Copy the decision making guide on the board. Write the alternatives in the guide.
____d. Ask students to name the positive consequences (good things) and negative consequences (bad things) for each alternative. Their responses are written on the board.
____e. Allow students to examine the advantages and disadvantages of both alternatives, and select the most appropriate alternative.
3. Individual practice
____a. Review the steps one should follow when making decisions.
____b. Distribute a copy of the activity sheet.
____c. Ask for a volunteer to read the decision dilemma out loud.
d. Instruct students to use the steps they’ve learned to make a decision.
____Sample activity sheet

Decision dilemma:

Your class is playing “Math Relay”. You have been chosen as one of the team captains. Your first task is to select members of your team. You need one more good math student for your team. Your best friend is one of those students waiting to be selected. She wants to be on your team, but you know she is not a very good math student. What do you do?

(figure available in print form)
Alternative #1

Negative Consequences

Positive Consequences

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LESSON PLAN #2

(The Trouble With Thirteen: Student Interview)

OBJECTIVES: To increase students’ ability to identity with characters

To provide opportunities for students to become active listeners

MATERIALS: Copy of the poem “New Friends and Old Friends” by Joseph Parry, format for interview

PROCEDURE:

1. Introduction and motivation
____a. Introduce the lesson by reading the poem entitled “New Friends and Old Friends” by Joseph Parry from The Best Loved Poems of the American People.
____b. Lead the discussion of the poem by asking the following questions:
________Why does the poet think old friends are more valuable than new friends?
________How might you lose an old friend?
________What are your thoughts about true friends?
2. Development of concepts
The following questions may be used for discussion of the story.
____What character traits do you think Rachel possessed? Find examples in the story to support your answers. What are the interests and anxieties shared by the characters?
____Do you feel Annie’s jealousy of Rachel’s new friends was a normal reaction? Describe an experience in which you were jealous of a friend. Why do you feel the girls were so concerned about menstruation? What meaning does menstruation have for you?
____What pubic development might boys be concerned about? Do you think Rachel will have any problems adjusting to her parents’ divorce? Explain your answer. Skim the story for a passage that parallels the theme of the poem “Old Friends and New Friends”.
3. Extending interpretations
____a. List the various topics discussed in the novel.
____b. Each student will select one topic to use as a subject of an interview. He will write five or more questions for that topic.
____c. Explain to students that questions should elicit the person’s feelings.
____d. Explain that an interview is a meeting at which a reporter obtains information from a person.
____e. Tell students to interview another person of their own age group, remind students to use pseudonyms in their reporting and to encourage the persons they interview to be honest about their answers.
____f. Give students a form to use for the interview.
____g. Have them write their questions on the form prior to the interview.
____h. Ask the reporters to share their findings.
____i. Discuss the findings.

Sample interview form (divorce)
Topic: Divorce

Reporter. How old were you when your parents divorced?

_____: _______________

(person interviewed)

Reporter: Did it come as a surprise to you, or were you expecting it?

_____: _______________

Reporter: Who did you blame? Why?

_____: _______________

Reporter: What changes did the divorce cause (i.e. moving, financial problems, your mother having to work)?

_____: _______________

Reporter: How do you feel around friends who live with both parents?

_____: _______________

Reporter: Do you wish your parents would get back together?

_____: _______________

Reporter: What advice would you give a child whose parents are divorced or getting a divorce?

_____: _______________

SPIN-OFF ACTIVITY: CREATIVE WRITING
Students will write paragraphs on the topic, “The Trouble With Age _____”. They will give personal views of the problems associated with their age.

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LESSON PLAN #3

(Then Again. Maybe I Won’t: Support Systems)

OBJECTIVES: To familiarize students with support systems in the home, school, and community.

To aid students in diagramming their own support systems.

MATERIALS: Support personnel in school (i.e. social worker, psychologist, counselors, nurse, referral office staff, administrators, security guard); support personnel from Hill Health Center; copy of support system diagram

PROCEDURE:

1. Invite the support personnel to visit the classroom and discuss their services.
2. Allow for a question and answer period.
3. Distribute a copy of the diagrams.
4. Have students list the names of those persons to whom they might turn to in crisis situations.
5. Extend the support system by writing the names of people the primary supporters might refer them to it they are unable to help.
6. Ask students to draw a heavy line on the diagram mapping the support route they took when they had a problem.

Sample activity sheet

(figure available in print form)

SPIN-OFF ACTIVITY: CREATIVE WHITING
Begin by asking students to name traits they observed in Joel. Ask them to support their answers with examples from the story. Explain that the author dose not tell us what happened to Joel in military school, but we can draw conclusions based on things we know about him.

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LESSON PLAN #4

(“My Friend, Leona”: Case Study)

OBJECTIVE: To extend the thinking of students by having them assess the facts and draw conclusions.

MATERIALS: A copy of the poem, a copy of the case study format

PROCEDURE:

1. Distribute a copy of the poem.
2. Use information in the poem to complete the form.
Suggested format

Subject:

Personal History: (sex, age group, appearance, school achievement)

Social History: (family, occupation of parents, relationship with parents)

Personality Traits:

Problem:

Solution:

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ADDITIONAL TEACHER ACTIVITIES

ACTIVITY #1:

IDENTITY MAP SEARCH
Students must compare themselves to some mythical country, and answer the questions on the background about the self.

1. What is the name of this country?
2. Who discovered this country?
3. When was it discovered?
4. Where was it discovered?
5. If this country is one of many on a large continent, how many are there?
6. What are its physical features?
7. What is its racial make-up?
8. What is its principal means of communication?
9. What languages are spoken?
10. What is its climate?
11. How does it get along with other countries?
12. Who are its allies?
13. What religion is practiced here?
14. What are its principal resources?
15. What are some points of interest?
16. What are some recreational activities?
17. What are some historical events?
18. How is it governed?
19. What are some of its problems?
20. What battles have it been a part of?
21. What is its stand on education?
22. What is its attitude toward drugs and sex?
23. What does it think about children’s rights?
24. What is this country’s hope for the future?

SPIN-OFF ACTIVITY: AUTOBIOGRAPHY
The answers from the “Identity Map Search” can be used by students as a guide in writing their autobiographies.

ACTIVITY #2: MOCK COURT

Appoint a judge and five students to act as jurors. Two students present opposing views to the same problem. The opposing views are supported by witnesses who give testimony. The role of the jurors and judge is to come up with a viable solution.

ACTIVITY #3: ALL ABOUT ME

Students can assemble a bulletin board about themselves. Student autobiographies are placed in the center. Yarn is used to connect any pictures, certificates, awards, or drawings to the autobiographies.

If two large boards are used, the displays of two or three students can be shown. Each week the display can be changed to allow everyone an opportunity to mount his display.

ACTIVITY #4: CLASSROOM JOB APPLICATION

Name:

Address:

Phone Number:

Age:

1. Check the job you are applying for:
_____ washing boards
_____ distributing and collecting papers
_____ passing out and collecting books
_____ messenger
_____ cafeteria monitor
_____ line leader
_____ removing displays from bulletin boards
2. What are your reasons for applying for this job?
3. What are your qualifications?
4. List any previous jobs held.
5. List references.
* This job is temporary and will last one month.

ACTIVITY #5: PARENT INVOLVEMENT

Allow parents an opportunity to assist in raising their child’s self-esteem. Distribute a copy of the following letter to parents.

Dear Parent,

This year I would like to supplement the regular academic curriculum with a unit designed to raise self-esteem in children. The experiences your child will have in school should help him develop a sense of identity and acceptance, but I need your help, too.

Your influence on your child’s self-esteem is very important. He needs to feel that you are interested in him and recognize his achievements. At the same time, it you have interests or talents you are willing to share, it will allow your child to feel a sense of pride in you. No interest is too small or insignificant. For example, you might want to share your interest in music, poetry, ethnic foods, crafts, dance, sports, or your career. When possible, plan to use your child as your assistant.

Please complete the form below, and return it with your child.

Sincerely,

I _______ work.

do, don’t

I am available for 45 minutes on _____ .

____                 date

I am interested in _____ and would like to share it with the class.

I have no special interests, but I do want to see the kinds of things my child is doing in school._____

After the forms have been collected, make a schedule of the times and dates when parents are available to visit the class.

ACTIVITY #6: JOURNALS

Students record their personal feelings about the events of the day. If they had negative feelings, they should think of ways they can change them into positive feelings.

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Notes

1. Luella Cole, Psychology of Adolescence (New York, 1964), p. 267.
2. Stanley Coopersmith, Antecedents of Self-Esteem, quoted in Janice Gibson, Psychology for the Classroom (Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, 1976), pp. 89-90.
3. D. Rogers, The Psychology of Adolescence, quoted in John Stewart Dacey, Adolescents Today (Santa Monica, California, 1979), pp. 191-192.

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STUDENT BIBLIOGRAPHY

Angier, Bradford and Barbara Corcoran, Ask for Love and They Give You Rice Pudding. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1977.

This is a sensitive novel about a lonely rich kid who uses money to buy friends. He learns more about himself and others whom he discovers the journal of his father who left many years ago.

Bishop, Curtis. Fast Break. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott Company, 1967.

This novel focuses on the importance of team-play in basketball and the pitfalls of athletes “showboating”.

Blume, Judy. Are You There God? It’s Me Margaret. New York: Dell Publishing Company, 1970.

Confusion about religion and uncertainty about puberty are the themes of this novel.

Blume, Judy. Blubber. New York: Dell Publishing Company, 1974.

This book illustrates the cruelty groups can direct toward peers. It also demonstrates the power a group leader can wield over a victim.

Blume, Judy. Then Again, Maybe I Won’t. New York: Dell Publishing Company, 1971.

This novel gives insight into the conflicts adolescents face when they are unable to solve their problems and feel there is no one they can confide in.

Danziger, Paula. Can You Sue Your Parents for Malpractice? New York: Delacorte Press, 1979.

Family problems and confusion about being oneself are the themes of this novel.

Danziger, Paula. The Cat Ate My Gymsuit. New York: Delacorte Press, 1974.

A girl with a poor body image invents one hundred excuses for not dressing for gym.

Danziger, Paula. The Pistachio Prescription. New York: Delacorte Press. 1978.

A teenage girl eats red pistachio nuts to cure any problem. She feels unattractive amidst a family of beautiful people. Family problems, a poor relationship with her sister, and asthma attacks cause her additional problems. She develops a more positive self-image after her election as freshperson class president.

Lipsyte, Robert. One Fat Summer. New York. Harper & Row Publishers, 1977.

An overweight fourteen year-old boy is the brunt of cruelty, ridicule, and intimidation from a group of roughnecks. He sheds his excess weight and learns to stand up for himself.

Miles, Betty. The Real Me. New York: Knopf, 1974.

An eleven year-old girl takes a stand to end sex discrimination in her school’s physical education program and change the newspaper’s rule forbidding girls to deliver newspapers.

Miles, Betty. The Trouble With Thirteen. New York: Knopf, 1979.

Two friends try to maintain their friendship despite one friend’s move to another city and the unexpected changes that begin to pull them apart.

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TEACHER BIBLIOGRAPHY

Briggs, Dorothy Corkille. Your Child’s Self-Esteem. New York: Doubleday & Company, 1967.

A handbook for parents on raising self-esteem in children. A checklist of the basic ideas discussed in the book is included.

Caplan, Gerald and Serge Lebovici. Adolescence: Psychosocial Perspectives. New York: Basic Books, Inc., 1969.

A collection of papers on adolescence. The William Schonfild paper is most helpful in explaining sexual development, physical growth, and body image in adolescents.

Cole, Luella. Psychology of Adolescence. New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, Inc., 1964.

An excellent reference on the social and emotional growth of adolescents. Chapter 13 addresses the adolescent’s self-concept.

Committee on Adolescence Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry. Normal Adolescence. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1968.

A broad overview of the dynamics and impact of adolescence is presented.

Dacey, John Stewart. Adolescents Today. California: Goodyear Publishing Company, 1979.

An excellent reference for information on identity, puberty, moral judgment, and the influence of family, peers, and school on adolescents. Each chapter includes activities relevant to the topic of discussion.

Fellman, Hazel. The Best Loved Poems of the American People. New York: Doubleday & Company, 1936.

A collection of poems frequently requested by readers of the Queries and Answers page of the New York Times Book Review. It contains many poems teachers can use.

Gibson, Janice. Psychology for the Classroom. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1976.

An excellent reference for teachers. Chapter 3 explains the adolescent’s search for identity. Peer, parent, and school influences on self-esteem are discussed. Practical suggestions for teachers are included.

Grinder, Robert E. Studies in Adolescence. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1955.

A book of readings concerning the nature of adolescence. The article by Mary Cover Jones and Paul Henry Mussen reports the findings of a study of self-concept in early and late maturing girls.

Josselyn, Irene M. Adolescence. New York: Harper & Row, Publishers, 1971.

The complications and confusion associated with adolescence are discussed. Case examples are cited.

Kizziar, Janet and Judy W. Hagedorn. Search for Acceptance. Chicago: Nelson-Hall, 1976.

Parents are given some background in understanding adolescent problems. The importance of effective, on-going communication between the parent and adolescent is emphasized. Case examples are cited.

McGough, Elizabeth. Who Are You? New York: William Morrow and Company, 1976.

This is a self-help guide for teenagers in understanding themselves. Physical changes, self-esteem, peer pressure, identity, and family relationships are some of the adolescent problems discussed.

O’Neill, Mary. People I’d Like to Keep. New York: Doubleday & Company, 1964.

A book of poetry for children.

Powell, Marvin and Allen H. Frerichs. Readings in Adolescent Psychology. Minnesota: Burgess Publishing Company, 1971.

A collection of studies. Section two includes readings on self-perception.

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FILMSTRIPS FOR CLASSROOM USE

“Life Changes Cause Stress” Color, cassette, automatic and manual.

Early adolescent years are associated with changes in physical appearance, family and peer relationships, and attitude development.

“Getting Together” Color, cassette, automatic and manual.

This filmstrip deals with being a friend without losing one’s own identity and values.

“If You Are Changing ” Color, cassette, automatic and manual.

Physical development and modified family relationships are the themes.

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