People are influenced by society in thousands of ways every day. We are influenced by media; commercials and advertisements, musical lyrics, and even movies. We are influenced by how the people around us are behaving, sometimes even changing our morals or values based on what they are doing, such as in mass behaviour.
Between TV, the movies, online videos and all of the other media sources out there, it's no wonder that these societal influences can shape teen's behavior for good or for ill. The American Academy of Pediatrics' Healthy Children website notes that parents should watch for media influences that include acts of violence, sexual situations, statements about body image, alcohol and drug use, and gender or cultural ...view middle of the document...
Without adequate adult guidance, ads that feature young, attractive people smoking can make this unhealthful habit seem acceptable or even appealing. Aside from glorifying, or selling, risky behaviors, advertising can also alter the way a teen chooses to spend money. Whether it is mom and dad's cash or an after-school job paycheck, enticing ads in magazines, billboards, TV or in-store displays can make teens think it's acceptable to spend hard-earned money on pricey or unnecessary items such as designer label jeans.
The schools, and subsequent social environments, are parts of society that exert a communal influence on teens. Every junior and senior high school setting is different in some way, creating a community that accepts or disregards certain behaviors. This could mean that a child who had certain values or beliefs before entering junior or senior high school might make changes due to the predominant school views. For example, if the popular crowd believes that cool girls shouldn't get good grades, your daughter might start to take up behaviors that lead to poor grades.
Society and Laws
Some aspects of society can have a positive influence. As children grow into the teen years, they become more aware of legal issues and society's laws. Although a younger child might know that stealing money can result in jail time, adolescents have the ability to understand legalities in a more abstract way. This knowledge might help teens to think twice before engaging in risky or illegal activities such as underage drinking, drug use or drinking and driving. This isn't to say that teens aren't going to experiment with illegal substances just because the societal laws say "no," but instead they might think harder about their choices in light of the consequences.