Secondary socialisation takes place outside the home. It is where children and adults learn how to act in a way that is appropriate for the situations that they are in.
Schools require very different behaviour from the home. Children act according to new rules. New teachers have to act in a way that is different from pupils and learn the new rules from people around them.
Traditional games and toys are one of the ways in which children learn to act in a way that is appropriate for their society. Fairy stories teach girls that they have to be good and beautiful, whereas boys are taught to be active and save the girls from danger. Many modern children’s stories are about males.
Peer groups are people like us. They do not have to be our friends, and we do have to like them. We still act like them. Often peer groups can be bullying, but not always. We need to have the good opinion of people like us.
An important part of socialisation may be religion. We are not all religious, but even so, our religion sets the rules for good behaviour and we follow the rules, if not the religion.
The mass media are very important as a part of socialisation. It is claimed that we get many of our ideas from the media. They give us an image of ourselves – for instance girls are taught to be thin and boys are shown as tough in films, magazines and video games.
Work is important to adults. We need to learn how to act in a way that others expect us to act. We may have to learn a whole set of actions and ideas about how to act as well as how to do the job!
1. What is secondary socialisation?
2. What new rules do children learn in school?
3. How do teachers act in a way that is different from pupils?
4. What do children learn from fairy stories?
5. Name modern stories and television programmes. Are they about males or females?
6. What is a peer group?
7. What religious rules do we all follow in Britain?
8. Why are the media so important in our lives? Write a few ideas here.
9. Think of one job and list some of the ideas that you may have about how to act if you had that job (e.g. nurses should be caring, polite, neat etc)
10. List all of the agencies that are part of our secondary socialisation.
1. Discussion: Are the mass media able to influence us without us being able to recognise what is happening?
2. Design: Invent a poster for a new student at your school telling them the most important rules for getting on with one another (not just the school rules, but the unwritten norms of school life)
3. Questionnaire: Design a questionnaire and find out how important friends are to people of your age.
4. Interview: Ask one of your parents how they act in work and how different that behaviour is from how they act at home.