Peer relationships start to change significantly as individual’s transition from early child hood into middle childhood. In middle childhood, 30% of a child’s social interactions involve peers, compared to 10% in early childhood (Rubin, Bukowski, & Parker, 1998). Additional changes in peer relationships occur as individual’s transition into adolescence. In both middle childhood and adolescence individuals look for peer relationships to establish a social connection as an attempt to find their place within a specific social group (Berger, 2011). Peer relationships provide a positive climate for social and moral growth and foster peer interaction (Blume, 2006). Friendship and social support is a result of peer interaction, which plays an important role in social development.
During middle childhood there is a change in the perspective of friendships, and relationships established in middle childhood can last for many years. Children have friends and establish friendship preferences usually by the age of four. During middle childhood, maturing peer relations depend upon a developing understanding of friendship (Blume, 2006). As children continue to interact within peer groups, their acceptance of friendship is an important part of the early stages of adolescence (Blume, 2006).
Peer relationships of adolescence differ from middle childhood, as they are based on commonality rather than convenience (Blume, 2006). However, they are also based on emotional connectivity (Berger, 2011).The peer groups of adolescence have similar interests and music preferences, share in the same type of humor, and often dress alike. When rejected by their peers adolescents commonly experience betrayal and isolation. As relationships develop, adolescents pay greater attention to social rules, and how teens are treated by their peers designates their social status (Blume, 2006).
As peer groups are establish they will often form cliques or clubs. According to Berger...