TED Conversations

Denis Fontanini

This conversation is closed. Start a new conversation
or join one »

Why do kids create social cliques in high school? Do they hinder the growth of others?

I am a Highshool Senior and see this all the time. Cool kids, Girls thinking that there all that. But what I have noticed that has become a problem in my mind is, does this hinder the growth of the other people in the school. When Senior Ball, or Homecoming comes around, and the vote for the king and queen come out, it only contains the "Cool Kids" or the "cliques". What about the other kids, don't they get a chance? ( yes I am one of those other kids). I'm not trying to sound like I want to be there im just noticing a pattern. And I feel bad for the other kids. So what is your input, personal experiance? Any thoughts in general.


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • thumb
    Feb 19 2013: I came across this the other day: http://nymag.com/news/features/high-school-2013-1/

    "In fact, one of the reasons that high schools may produce such peculiar value systems is precisely because the people there have little in common, except their ages. “These are people in a large box without any clear, predetermined way of sorting out status,” says Robert Faris, a sociologist at UC Davis who’s spent a lot of time studying high-school aggression. “There’s no natural connection between them.” Such a situation, in his view, is likely to reward aggression. Absent established hierarchies and power structures (apart from the privileges that naturally accrue from being an upperclassman), kids create them on their own, and what determines those hierarchies is often the crudest common-­denominator stuff—looks, nice clothes, prowess in sports—­rather than the subtleties of personality. “Remember,” says Crosnoe, who spent a year doing research in a 2,200-student high school in Austin, “high schools are big. There has to be some way of sorting people socially. It’d be nice if kids could be captured by all their characteristics. But that’s not realistic.”

    The whole article is pretty interesting.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.