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Children's Relationship with Classmates: A Comprehensive Analysis of Friendship Nominations and Liking

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Children's Relationship with Classmates: A Comprehensive Analysis of Friendship Nominations and Liking

Psychological Profile:

Subject is young male 7 years old (my nephew), will be 8 years old January 1st, 2006. Height is approximately 4ft 1 inches and weight is roughly 58lbs. Olive toned skin complexion, brown short hair, and big brown eyes, with a devilish smile.

The subject has a personality that constantly changes based on the people in his surroundings. More playful and rough with children of his own age group, and seems to act more shy and tranquil around an older age group of adults.

The subject is currently in the middle of his second grade school year. He The subject is doing very well with his A B C's and is also currently learning how to write in cursive. Other than adjusting to the new changes at home, which I will mention more about later, the subject seems to be adapting well with new things at school. His personality can be perceived as shy at first when around unfamiliar adults, but needs to be told to stop chit chatting with other classmates instead needs to concentrate more his on school assignments while in the classroom. His new hobby is to learn to ride a bike with training wheels and play with this new game boy.

The family recently moved from an East Boston neighborhood which was clearly not suitable for a young boy to grow up in to an atmosphere that resembles an ideal rural suburbia in Derry, NH. House exterior description is a red brick house with white shutters. Inside, the house was very spacious consisting of 2 levels, a furnished basement (used as playroom), 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, kitchen & dining area. Outside, the house appeared like an island, surrounded by a large yard with freshly landscaped grass & contained a miniature playschool's playground swing set and a shed to store winter supplies.

Parents are both of Indian heritage, possessing society's stereotypical beliefs and standards. (Female being the housewife, where as the men work) Mother is a full time stay at home mom, but that by no means does that depreciate her role in the household. She wakes up and goes to bed with an agenda which never seems to end. The subject's father works as a full time Electrical Engineer for the same company since 1989. (Company will remain unidentified) Father provides a comfortable, safe and secure lifestyle for himself along with his wife and soon to be 8 yr old child.

Summary of Article:

In the article Children's Relationship with Classmates: A Comprehensive Analysis of Friendship Nominations and Liking, by Rachel J. Hundley, & Robert Cohen, The main goal of this research was to take children's need for their social group based on the type of friendship connection between children and examine it with a fine toothcomb. This article shows four types of friendship relationship categories based on friendship nominations that include every child in the classroom. The four categories classmates consist of are as follows:

* Mutual Friends; where it is a mutual agreement between classmates

* Unilateral Given Friend; when the child nominates a classmate

* Unilateral Received Friend; when a classmate nominates child

* Not a Friend; neither classmate or child nominates the another

The subjects chosen in this study are a plethora of first- through sixth-graders at a university-affiliated public school totaling three hundred ninety three elementary students clustering together by sequential grades 1st and 2nd graders, 3rd and 4th graders, and 5th and 6th graders. All parents were informed of this project survey at the beginning of the school year. At the beginning of the testing, all children were informed that they did not have to take part in it if they didn't choose to and were allowed to stop at any time during the testing if needed, but no child declined to play a part. Only the students that had all four-friendship types of nominations were included in the final sample, which came to a total of two hundred and eighty-one students.

Observation:

At about 11:30am on Wednesday November 16th I met the subjects' mother at a local Dunkin Donuts about 10 minutes away from the elementary school is located. I thought it would be a nice gesture to buy a box of munchkins for the 2nd grade students and a coffee for the teacher to show appreciation and thanks for allowing me to interrupt their daily routine. We drove the elementary school and checked in, then continued up to the classroom where the subject sat. His desk was located on the far right front of the classroom. As the subject's mother and I walked in, all the students in the classroom got stirred up and eager to ask their teacher questions faster then she/he could answer. We sat aside and waited for the teacher to approach us at her convenience. A school bell rang and the students all quickly ran out for their recess time. This is when the subjects' mother and I stood at the window, which overlooks the parking lot area where recess was held. But even before we observed the subject at play we noticed the seating arrangements in class. The subjects' class was assigned seating chart so when the bell rang, the subject immediately ran to his closest friend which was another boy 2 rows over to the left of him.

They got their jackets from their cubbies on the wall and ran outside together. Subject's mother, the teacher, and I went to windows that were closest to the parking lot and observed the subject interacting with his classmates. During recess I noticed that the subject and his friend had gotten together with 3 other boys that were apparently in a different class. They started a game of "tag" which gradually associated 2 girls along the way that were also in a different class than my nephew's. When examining the area recess took place, it seemed as though a zoo was let loose and there was

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