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2.1: Planning

Difficulty Level: At Grade Created by: CK-12
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Key Ideas

  • As adolescents mature, they spend less time with their family and more time with their friends, with whom they share the experience of adolescence and adulthood.
  • Friends provide us with information not only about ourselves, but also about the world, and where we fit in.
  • Peer pressure can influence young adolescents tremendously, depending on an adolescent's level of self-confidence, sense of self, and dependence on friends for approval.


This section introduces the unit on sexuality by talking about friendships, peer pressure, and how interests and relationships begin to change with the onset of puberty and the development of sexual identity. The section starts by looking at peer pressure as both a positive and a negative force. The first activity is designed to help students see that if they clarify their own views and attitudes ahead of time on sensitive issues, peer pressure will be easier to deal with. Ways of responding to peer pressure are given. Students also think about why friendships change as they go through adolescence.



\begin{align*}\checkmark\end{align*} examine the role of peer pressure in impacting behavior.

\begin{align*}\checkmark\end{align*} determine why it is hard to resist peer pressure and learn to be prepared to respond to it.

\begin{align*}\checkmark\end{align*} identify the reasons for resisting peer pressure and practice standing up for individual beliefs.

\begin{align*}\checkmark\end{align*} examine the role and importance of friendships and how they change.


adolescence, identity, peer culture, peer pressure, peers, sexual identity, sexual intimacy, socialization

Student Materials

Activity 1-1: Peer Pressure

  • Activity Report
  • 4 index cards or other paper for each group of 4 students

Teacher Materials

Activity 1-1: Peer Pressure

  • Activity Report Answer Key

Advance Preparation

See Activity 1-1 in the student edition.

Activity 1-1: Peer Pressure

  • Gather index cards

Interdisciplinary Connections

Language Arts Role-playing and discussion groups help students develop communication skills and can lead to essay or journal writing.

Social Studies Peer pressure is a form of socialization. Values differ from culture to culture.

Background Information

The purpose of introducing the sexuality unit with a section that explores friends and peers is to place sex, at the outset, in a relational context. An additional benefit is that young people will find it easier to talk about friends (which most of them have) than sexual partners (which fewer have at this age) to begin the unit. Moreover, friendship is often a more comfortable topic, whereas sex is not.

Many college textbooks have chapters on peer relationships, should you want more background information. See for importance, The Developing Person Through the Life Span, by K. S. Bergen (N.Y.: Worth Publishers, 1998) Chapter 13.

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