“What Are the Most Important Agents of Socialization and How Are They Being Accounted for in Children Lives

Topics: Sociology, Socialization, Family Pages: 4 (1417 words) Published: May 15, 2011

Parents are important agents of socialization but they are not the only source of socialization when it comes to kids. In my paper I will be discussing the important factors of socialization and what we perceive to be a turning point in our children lives. Believe it or not but parents, family, educational institutions, and media are socializing agents who carry out the process of socialization.

The family is the most influential socializing agent. Infants are born into certain types of families and grow up with them as children and adults. Socialization is the process of imbibing the norms, value and social patterns of a particular society. It is also closely linked to the concept of individual and personal development. The family is perhaps the most important source of socialization, given its central role in the early developmental period (Holm, 2005). It plays this central role because it introduces children to intimate relationships and gives them their first experience of being treated as distinct individuals. In essence, the family is the child’s first reference group, the first group whose norms and values the child adopts as his or her own and uses to evaluate his or her behavior. The family also introduces children to group life. Several factors in family life affect socialization. For example, fathers and mothers have different parental styles. Fathers tend toward physical play and unfamiliar games, while mothers tend toward vocal interaction and familiar games. The numbers of siblings and the birth order also have substantial effects. Interactions with siblings enable children to learn about cooperation and conflict as well as negotiation and bargaining. Finally, the family introduces the child into society, helping him or her to find an identity in the larger social world. Socialization is seen as an essential process in the...
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