back to top

Peer Relationships In Middle Childhood

Peer relationships are so important during middle childhood. This post helps to illustrate some of the key components that we have covered in class.

Posted on

Social Status Among Peers

Social Status among peers is a very prevalent part of middle childhood. This status is based on socio metric ratings or peer nominations of liking or disliking a person. There are 4 categories that a child may reside in. For example, you can be rejected, controversial, neglected or popular. Surrounding those 4 categories is the actual scale of high vs low dislike and high liking vs low liking. In this Image, Regina Gorge or a “popular girl” is talking about having a high dislike for nerds or “rejected kids.”

Family Role In Children's Peer Relationships

The family can play a multitude of roles in a Childs peer relationship. For example, they could be a designer, supervisor, mediator or advisor. This image shows a parent being an advisor to her child who is looking sad and we can infer that the mother is helping her son to manage social problems that are occurring among his peers. An Advisor role is mostly beneficial to youth who receive low peer acceptance. On the other hand, the designer is when a family member may influence or control the setting of the interactions in which the child is involved in school. The mediator role occurs when parents begin to arrange play dates for their child and helping to bring their social network together. It also provides benefits for children who are well accepted and may even help their peer status more. Lastly, the supervisor role reflects the family monitoring and intervening and interactions only when it is needed.

In Theory...

Sullivan's Theory of Interpersonal Relationships states the impact that relationships have on development such as the fulfillment of social needs. Throughout middle childhood, kids begin the socialization process starting with an increased need for playmates. These relationships with other can influence a Childs development and also determine whether or not they become part of a clique. Cliques may posses either vertical or horizontal relationships. Vertical relationships Involves relationship to someone who has greater social power or knowledge while horizontal relationships maintain a reciprocal, egalitarian or equal social power among the group. This picture demonstrates a more vertical viewpoint. Regina George believes she has the most power among the group and the rest of the girls allow her to have that sense of control and entitlement.

Friendships In Middle Childhood

This image is portraying “mutual liking” in middle childhood. Mutual Liking is the psychological term of people tending to better like people who like them. In other words, these are people who truly enjoy each others company, enjoy spending time together, trust one another and feel better about themselves knowing someone likes them this much. This can also be referred to as a best friend! These friendships are so important in middle childhood because it is the basis for other important relationships in the future.

This post was created by a member of BuzzFeed Community, where anyone can post awesome lists and creations. Learn more or post your buzz!