Sunday, 6 October 2013

Travelling inside ourselves - Adolescence

“The only journey is the journey within.”
Rainer Maria Rilke 

“All wonders you seek are within yourself.”
Sir Thomas Browne

“The greatest explorer on this earth never takes voyages as long as those of the man who descends to the depth of his heart.” 
Julien Green

“There is only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that’s your own self.” 
Aldous Huxley 


Young people in the period of adolescence are referred to as adolescents or teenagers or simply as teens.
The period of adolescence is filled with physical, intellectual, social and emotional changes. Teens discover themselves and try new relationships to the world around them. They try to establish their autonomy, they want to spend more time with their friends than with their family, they keep a diary, lock up their rooms and become more argumentative.

Most common teens problems:

Labile Emotions 
Adolescents can shift moods rapidly, vacillating between happiness and sadness, self-confidence and worry. Some of these mood changes are caused by biological sources. Moreover, complex social interactions such as conflicts with friends, school pressures and experimentation with romantic relationships can exacerbate the labile emotional state of adolescents.

Personal Identity
Adolescence is a time when teenagers begin to explore and assert their personal identities. It is common for adolescents to have an unstable sense of self and try out new personal labels and associate with various peer groups.

Peer Relationships
During adolescence, relationships with peers begin to be more important than relationships with the family. Teenagers often place a stronger emphasis on their friends’ perceptions and values. So, during the adolescence, teens might be strongly influenced by their peers’ beliefs and behaviours.

Self-centered Attitudes
It is often difficult for adolescents to look at circumstances from other people’s perspectives. This is due, in part, to their still-developing brain structures. So, adolescents can appear as self-centered and focused on their own needs without considering how those needs affect others. 


This is a big problem among adolescents. Bullying is the act of intentionally causing harm to others, through verbal harassment, physical assault, or other more subtle methods of coercion such as manipulation.

Studies show that people who are abused by their peers are at risk for mental health problems, such as low self-esteem, stress, depression, or anxiety. Bullies are at risk for problems, too. Bullying is violence, and it often leads to more violent behaviour as the bully grows up.


The School constitutes a large part of an adolescent’s existence. School problems during the adolescent years may be the result of rebellion and a need for independence. Teenagers can manifest tensions of attending the classes, examinations and tests, fear about failure in examinations, fear about low marks, fear and concern about a future career and fear to disappoint their parents.
Teens are always rebel and argumentative with their parents because they need to find their identity. Moreover, they need more privacy, so when they are at home they tend to stay in their own rooms by themselves...
... or at the phone with their friends for hours!

Now, watch this video and give your opinion.
What do you think going through adolescence means?
What do you think will be the best thing about growing up?     
What are you not looking forward to about adolescence?
Are there any teenagers that you admire?
Are you facing any problems?

This is the link of teacher Chiara's video (see the comment below). That's great!

Another teacher joined us! She's a teacher of French (see her comment below) and she sent me an interesting text by a French neurologist. Here it is!

A students' drawing


  1. Hello everybody,
    I take this opportunity to share a video my students did during the last school year with my collaboration. Tell me what you think about it and if you agree with what they say through their pics, thoughts and videos.
    Thanks a lot
    Teacher Chiara (from Istituto Comprensivo "Rodari" - Soveria Mannelli - Cz

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. So sorry... I forgot the link.
    Here you are:

    1. Thank you Chiara!
      The video is great!! This morning I was talking about adolescence with my students, we were having a look at this blog on the Interactive Whiteboard and we were thinking about doing a video...
      Your video is beautiful and we are going to take inspiration from it!

  3. I am a teenager and I feel like two different people:sometimes i feels like an adult and sometimes like a child.However I find it difficult when I have to make a decision about my future.ADOLESCENCE IS THAT PHASE OF LIFE WHERE YOU FORM YOUR CHARACTER
    Claa Luna Bellacicco 3D Istituto Comprensivo "Losapio-San Filippo Neri"

    1. Luna, I know it's difficult sometimes. Now you have to take some important decisions about your future (about high school, for example). But don't worry, you're just growing up! You're a child who's becoming adult, your life will be full of beautiful surprises!

  4. Angela Laterza - a teacher27 October 2013 at 18:39

    In my opinion it's a good work about the adolescence. A french neurologist F.G. Dolto compares the adoloscence to crowfish. He says that when this kind of fish changes its carapace it remains without defences and so it becomes vulnerable. In this moment there is always a congro fish that it's ready to eat it. At the same time, when a teen refuses the parent's protection he is in danger because in this moment there are a lot of profiteers and some wrong friends who can profit to him.

    1. Thank you Angela!
      I'm going to post the original text in French that you sent me.

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  6. Thanks for posting this article. I find it really interesting and I've put it on my blog with your address to show it to my pupils. I hope it's ok.

    1. Of course it is, Nelly. I am glad you like my post!

  7. Hi Roberta. This is Nelly again. Thanks for answering and sharing. I've just found this and I think you could like it too. It's about the image teens may have of themselves.

  8. this post does not make sense. You describe " the period of adolescence" like an illness, We are umans just like you adults

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