NIOS Class 12 Home Science Chapter 20 Adolescence

NIOS Class 12 Home Science Chapter 20 Adolescence Solutions to each chapter is provided in the list so that you can easily browse throughout different chapters NIOS Class 12 Home Science Chapter 20 Adolescence and select need one. NIOS Class 12 Home Science Chapter 20 Adolescence Question Answers Download PDF. NIOS Study Material of Class 12 Home Science Notes Paper 321.

NIOS Class 12 Home Science Chapter 20 Adolescence

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Also, you can read the NIOS book online in these sections Solutions by Expert Teachers as per National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS) Book guidelines. These solutions are part of NIOS All Subject Solutions. Here we have given NIOS Class 12 Home Science Chapter 20 Adolescence, NIOS Senior Secondary Course Home Science Solutions for All Chapter, You can practice these here.


Chapter: 20




Q. 1. Select the most appropriate answer.

(i) Adolescence is the period between:

(a) birth and childhood.

(b) childhood and adulthood.

(c) adulthood and old age. 

(d) childhood and old age.

Ans: (b) childhood and adulthood.

(ii) Adolescence begins and ends between:

(a) 11 and 18 years of age.

(b) 12 and 16 years of age. 

(c) 13 and 18 years of age.

(d) 15 and 18 years of age.

Ans: (a) 11 and 18 years of age.

(iii) The first sign of puberty amongst girls is:

(a) growth of pubic hair.

(b) appearance of breast-bud.

(c) onset of menstruation.

(d) nocturnal emission.

Ans: (c) onset of menstruation.

(iv) The first sign of puberty amongst the boys is:

(a) facial hair growth-.

(b) nocturnal emission. 

(c) breaking of voice.

(d) appearance of pubic hair.

Ans:  (b) nocturnal emission. 

Q. 2. From the following list (✓) mark those changes that take place in boys/girls/ both during adolescence:

1. More fatty tissues and rounded contours______________________
2. Slender shoulders and broaders hips______________________
3. Broader and stronger shoulders and slender hips______________________
4. Dark, curly hair on the body______________________
5. Squeaky and mature husky voice______________________
6. Onset of menarche______________________
7. Growth in arms and legs______________________
8. Growth in height______________________

Ans: Boys: 3, 4, 5.

Girls: 1, 2, 6.


Select the most appropriate answer. Give a reason for your selection.

(i) Early maturing girls feel 

(a) good and confident.

(b) conscious and odd.

(c) conscious and confident.

Because _________.

Ans: (b): because they do not understand what is happening to them also even though they are young they are expected to behave in a more responsible manner.

(ii) Which of the following do not get attention from the boys?

(a) late maturing girls.

(b) early maturing girls.

(c) both the above.

Because __________.

Ans: (a): because they do not look mature and are treated as a child.

(iii) Amongst boys, the chosen leaders are:

(a) Late maturing boys.

(b) Early maturing boys.

(c) any one of the two.

Because _________.

Ans: (b): because of their greater physical strength and well developed bodies.

(iv) Adolescents usually do not rely on them for information about sex

(a) peers.

(b) printed material.

(c) grand parents.

Because _________.

Ans: (c): because adolescents feel hesitant and shy in getting this information from grandparents.


Q. 1. Complete the statements in column A by matching them with those in column B.

Column AColumn B
(a) When parents allow freedom take interest in adolescent’s activities(i) Adolescent becomes dependent.
(b) When parents are very strict and authoritative.(ii) Adolescent becomes independent.
(c) When parents leave adolescents their own.(iii) Adolescent becomes independent and responsible.
(iv) Adolescent becomes confident but indifferent.


Column AColumn B
(a) When parents allow freedom take interest in adolescent’s activities(ii) Adolescent becomes independent.
(b) When parents are very strict and authoritative.(i) Adolescent becomes dependent.
(c) When parents leave adolescents their own.(iv) Adolescent becomes confident but indifferent.

Q. 2. List at least two examples, other than those given in your study material for each of the following: 

(i) Peer culture.

Ans: (a) wearing torn and faded jeans.

(b) blindly following fashion.

(ii) Harmful peer pressure.

Ans: (a) smoking and drinking.

(b) bunking work/school.

(iii) Positive peer influence.

Ans: (a) Trying to do better in exams. 

(b) Encouraging each other to learn new skills.


Q. 1. Give two important characteristics of an adolescent’s language. 

Ans: (i) slang.

(ii) short-forms.

Q. 2. List two important features of adolescent’s thinking.

Ans: (i) concrete.

(ii) abstract.

Q. 3. Enumerate any three developmental tasks of an adolescent.

Ans: (i) The first most important task is accepting one’s physique or body and using it effectively. 

(ii) Achieving new and more mature relationship with age-mates of both sexes.

(iii) Achieving a masculine or feminine social sex role, i.e., ability to become as responsible male or female adult member of society.

(iv) Achieving emotional independence from parents and other adults.

(v) Achieving a set of value, i.e., an ideology. 

(vi) Preparing for a career. 

(vii) Prepare for marriage and family life.

Q. 4. Mention two emotional and two Social characteristics of adolescents.



Q. 1. Given below is a list of characteristics, select the ones you will associate with adolescence.

(a) feeling of being ‘on stage’.

(b) ego-centrism.

(c) stranger anxiety. 

(d) peer group culture.

(e) crushes.

(f) concrete thinking.

(g) idealism.

(h) rebellion.

(i) work ethics.

(j) generation gap.

(k) sibling rivalry.

(l) abstract thinking.

(m) mood swings.

(n) mature thinking.

(o) easily influenced.

Ans: (a) feeling of being ‘on stage’.

(d) peer group culture.

(c) stranger anxiety.

(g) idealism.

(h) rebellion.

(j) generation gap.

(l) abstract thinking.

(m) mood swings.

(o) easily influenced. 

Q. 2. Select the most suitable answer from the four given choices at the end of each statement:

(i) Eating disorders in adolescents relate to

(a) undereating, overeating and vomiting.

(b) shrinking of stomach due to growth spurt.

(c) peer pressure.

(d) mood swings.

Ans: (a) undereating, overeating and vomiting.

(ii) The suicidal tendency in adolescents develops because of:

(a) eating disorders.

(b) peer pressure.

(c) biological problems.

(d) loneliness.

Ans: (d) loneliness.

(iii) Adolescents require education on reproductive health because:

(a) they are growing fast.

(b) they need to accept their physique as it is.

(c) they need to achieve male/female sex roles. 

(d) they need to prepare for marriage and family life.

Ans: (d) they need to prepare for marriage and family life.

(iv) Adolescents feel rebelious towards authority because they feel:

(a) adults do not trust them. 

(b) adults do not understand them.

(c) there is peer pressure.

(d) they have grown up.

Ans: (b) adults do not understand them.

Q. 3. List two damages to health and two economic damages one can suffer due to early marriage.

Ans: Damage to health: Adolescent has its impact on maternal and infant mortality rates, sexually transmitted infections in adolescents moreover mother mate become anemic.

Economic damage: The disadvantages of early marriage are: First, it may thwart the vocational or educational plans of the husband; second, it may handicap his earning power. To have a family dependent on him at the time he is struggling to get ahead in his vocation may keep him so tied down that he cannot acquire the means for self-improvement and advancement. Third, the qualities essential for a good mate are often not appreciated until the middle or later twenties.


Q. 1. Explain the term ‘adolescence’ in your own words.

Ans: The origin of the word Adolescence is from the Latin verd ‘adolescere’, which means, “to grow up.” It can be defined as the transitional stage of development between childhood and full adulthood, representing the period of time during which a person is biologically adult but emotionally not at full maturity. It represents the period of time during which a juvenile matures into adulthood.

Q. 2. Tabulate the physical changes that take place in girls and boys during adolescence.

Ans: Physical changes:

The process of rapid physical changes in adolescence is called puberty. It starts gradually, from around eleven years for girls and thirteen for boys. The age at which puberty starts has been dropping in most countries, probably due to better nutrition. So, your children may hit puberty earlier than you did. The hormone changes responsible actually begin some years earlier and may produce periods of moodiness and restlessness. Girls start these changes before boys and will, for the first three or four years, appear to be maturing much faster. After this, boys catch up.

These changes include:

For girls: menstrual periods, growth of under-arm, body and pubic hair.

For boys: voice breaks (becomes deeper), growth of body and pubic hair, facial hair, erections and wet dreams.

For both: Rapid physical growth. 

(i) By the age of 17, they’ll be young men and women who may be bigger than their parents and capable of having children themselves. In spite of this, they often still need support from you.

(ii) It is not surprising that, with the speed of these changes, some adolescents become very concerned about their appearance. They may need a lot of reassurance, especially if they are not growing or maturing as quickly as their friends.

(iii) They and their parents may worry less if they remember that there’s a lot of difference in the ages at which these changes occur.

(iv) Growth and development uses a lot of energy, and this may be why teenagers often seem to need so much sleep. Their getting-up late may be irritating, but it may well not be just: laziness.

Q. 3. Discuss the affect of early and late maturation on adolescents.

Ans: Affects of early or late maturation 

Boys: Early maturation is largely a bonus

• Early maturing boys show:

– Higher popularity.

– More success in athletics.

– More positive self concept.

• Negative effects of early maturation:

– More school difficulties.

– Greater risks of delinquency and substance abuse.

Early Maturing Girls

• Because girls mature earlier anyway, may come at a very early age.

• Effects more negative:

– Peer ridicule.

– Feeling of being “different”.

– Greater potential to gain negative labels.

• Some positives:

– Likely to date sooner.

– Greater popularity enhances self-esteem.

– Increasingly, athletic skills are valued.

Late Maturing Boys 

• Viewed as less attractive.

• Disadvantaged in sports.

• Shorter than same age girls and thus prob-lems with dating.

• Tendency for a decline in self-concept.

• Effects may extend into adulthood.

Late Maturing Girls

• Overlooked in dating and other mixed sex activities.

• Relatively low social status.

• When maturity catches up, may have bet-ter body satisfaction than early maturing girls.

• More likely to end up with culturally ideal body (slender, leggy).

• Tend to have fewer emotional problems.

Effects of Maturational Timing:

Early-maturing boys were seen as

• relaxed.

• independent.

• self-confident. and

• physically attractive by both adults and peers.

In contrast, late-maturing boys were not well-linked. Peers and adults view them as

• anxious.

• overly talkative. and

• attention-seeking in behavior.

Among girls, the impact of early versus late maturation was just the reverse. Early-matur-ing girls have social difficulties. They were be- low average in popularity,

• appear withdrawn.

• lacking in self-confidence.

• held few position in leadership.

Instead, late-maturing girls were especially well-off-regarded as

• physically attractive.

• lively, sociable. and

• leaders at school.

Q. 4. What role can the parents play in imparting sex-education to their children?

Ans: Sex is probably one area of our lives about which children know so little. And whatever little we happen to know about sex in bits and pieces through sources like friends, acquaintances and cheap sex books. Parents, elders and teachers in India hardly play any significant role in providing scientific knowledge. Since talking about sex is a taboo in the Indian society, the adolescents cannot freely approach his/her parents for guidance. Also, those who seek guidance from parents are not satisfied because the latter try to evade discussion or are not able to give satisfactory answers. A few of them try to gather information through books, films or from friends but a majority does not have access to such an information. Many a time, the adolescent receives wrong information and these myths and misconceptions are carried throughout their lifetime. Parents and teachers act as a source of providing sex knowledge to a small percentage of urban educated Indian men.

Guidelines for the parents:

(i) A good age to start having discussions on the topic is when they are most drawn to sexual behaviours, in their adolescence. 

(ii) It is not only important to teach them what can happen, but it is as important to teach them birth control as well.

(iii) Talking about sex and other things like drugs etc can help your children take their own decisions.

Q. 5. Discuss the various ways by which the parents discipline their children during adolescence. Which technique according to you is the best?

Ans: Children do not always do what parents want. When a child misbehaves, the parents must decide how to respond. All children need rules and expectations to help them learn. appropriate behaviour. During adolescence, parents-adolescent conflict tends to increase. This conflict appears to be a necessary part of gaining independence from parents while learning new ways of staying connected to them. Parent-teen conflict tends to peak with younger adolescents. Two kinds of conflict typically occur:

(i) Spontaneous conflict over day-to-day matters, such as what clothes the adolescent is allowed to purchase or wear and whether homework has been completed, and

(ii) Conflict over important issues, such as academic performance. Interestingly, the spontaneous conflict that occurs on a day-to-day basis seems to be more distressing to parents than to the adolescents. Parents often give greater meaning to conflict-laden interactions, construing them to be rejections of their values or as indicators of their failures as parents. Adolescents, on the other hand, may see the interaction as far less significant-just another way of showing Mom or Dad that they are individuals.

Effective parents operate on the belief that both the child and the parent have certain rights and that the needs of both are important. Effective parents don’t need to use physical force to discipline the child, but are more likely to set clear rules and explain why these rules are important. Effective parents reason with their children and consider the youngsters’ points of views even though they may not agree with them. The five basics of parenting adolescents are as follow:

1. Love and Connect: Teens need parents to develop and maintain a relationship with them that offers support and acceptance, for teen’s increasing maturity.

2. Monitor and Observe: Teens need parents to be aware of-and let teens know they are aware of-their activities, including school performance, work experiences, after-school activities, peer relationships, adult relationships, and recreation, through a process that increasingly involves less direct supervision and more communication, observation, and networking with other adults.

3. Guide and Limit: Teens need parents to uphold a clear but evolving set of boundaries, maintaining important family rules and values, but also encouraging increased competence and maturity.

4. Model and Consult: Teens need parents to provide ongoing information and support around decision making, values, skills, goals, and interpreting and navigating the larger world, teaching by example and ongoing dialogue.

5. Provide and Advocate: Teens need parents to make available not only adequate nutrition, clothing, shelter, and health care, but also a supportive home environment and a network of caring adults. 

Q.6. Discuss the role played by the peer group during adolescence.

Ans: One of the most obvious changes in adolescence is that the hub around which the adolescent’s world revolves shifts from the family to the peer group. It is important to note that this decreased frequency of contact with family does not mean that family closeness has assumed less importance for the adolescent. Peers is an important and healthy new stage in their child’s development. Peer groups serve as powerful rein-forcers during adolescence as sources of popularity, status, prestige, and acceptance. Positive peer relations during adolescence have been linked to positive psychosocial adjustment For example, those who are accepted by their peers and have mutual friendships have been found to have better self-images during adolescence and to perform better in school. On the other hand, social isolation among peer- rejected teens has been linked to a variety of negative behaviours, such as delinquency.

The nature of adolescents’ involvement with peer groups changes over the course of adolescence. Younger adolescents typically have at least one primary peer group with whom they identify whose members are usually similar in many respects, including sex.

During this time, involvement with the peer group tends to be most intense, and conformity and concerns about acceptance are at their peak. Preoccupation with how their peers see them can become all consuming to adolescents. The intense desire to belong to a particular group can influence young adolescents to go along with activities in which they would otherwise not engage. Adolescents need adults who can help them withstand peer pressure and find alternative. 

During middle adolescence (ages 14-16 years), peer groups tend to be more gender mixed. Less conformity and more tolerance of individual differences in appearance, beliefs, and feelings are typical. By late adolescence, peer groups have often been replaced by more intimate dyadic relationships, such as one-on- one friendships and romances that have grown in importance as the adolescent has matured.

Q. 7. “Good school environment and trained teachers are most important for motivating adolescents to do well in schools”. Do you agree with this statement? Support your answer with examples.

Ans: Yes, I agree with the statement. For most adolescents, school is a prominent part of their life. It is here that they relate to and develop relationships with their peers and where they have the opportunity to develop key cognitive skills. A strong sense of attachment, bonding and belonging, and a feeling of being cared about-also characterise adolescents’ positive relationships with their teachers and their schools. Suicidal behaviour is the end result of a complex interaction of, social and familial factors. A suicide has a powerful effect on the individual’s family, school and community. Adolescents often will try to support a suicidal friend by themselves. They may feel bound to Secrecy, or feel that adults are not to be trusted.

Many schools have a written protocol for dealing with a student who shows signs of suicidal or other dangerous behaviour. Some schools have automatic expulsion policies for students who engage in illegal or violent behaviour. It is important to remember that teens that are violent or abuse drugs may be at increased risk for suicide. If someone is expelled, the school should attempt to help the parents arrange immediate and possibly intensive psychiatric and behavioural intervention. When an adolescent is having difficulty, parents and teachers can assist by:

(i) Making the time to listen to and try to understand the teen’s fears or concerns.

(ii) Setting appropriate boundaries for behaviour that are consistently enforced.

(iii) Encouraging the teen to participate in one or more school activities.

(iv) Attending school functions, sports, and plays.

(v) Meeting as a team, including parents, teachers, and school counselor, asking how they can support the teen’s learning environment and sharing their expectations for the child’s future.

(vi) Arranging tutoring or study group support for the teen from the school or the community through organisations such as the local YMCA or a local college or university.

(vii) Providing a supportive home and school environment that clearly values education.

(viii) Helping your child think about career options by arranging for visits to local companies and colleges, picking up information on careers and courses, and encouraging an internship or career-oriented part-time job.

(ix) Encouraging the teen to volunteer in the community or to participate in community groups such as, Scouting, religious organisations, or other serviceoriented groups to provide an out-of-school support system.

(x) Emphasising at home and in school the importance of study skills, hard work, and follow-through.

Q. 8. What are the characteristics of the cognitive development during adolescence? Discuss.

Ans: During adolescence they are now able to analyse situations logically in terms of cause and effect and to entertain hypothetical situations and use symbols, such as in metaphors, imaginatively this higher-level thinking allows them to think about the future, evaluate alternatives, and set personal goals. Cognitive competence includes such things as the ability to reason effectively, problem solve, think abstractly and reflect, and plan for the future. Adolescent girls tend to feel more confident about their reading and social skills than boys, and adolescent boys tend to feel more confident about their athletic and maths skills. Despite their rapidly developing capacity for higher-level thinking, most adolescents still need guidance from adults to develop their potential for rational decision making. It’s normal for adolescents to.

(i) Argue for the sake of arguing: Adolescents often go off the main point, seeming to argue side issues for no known reason; this can be highly frustrating to many adults. Keep in mind that, for adolescents, exercising their new reasoning capabilities can be exciting, and they need the opportunity to experiment with these new skills.

(ii) Jump to conclusions: Adolescents, even with their newfound capacities for logical thinking, sometimes jump to startling conclusion. However, an adolescent may be taking a risk in staking out a position verbally, and what may seem rude may actually be a brave face to cover his or her anxiety. Instead of correcting their reasoning, give adolescents the chance to speak simply listen. Allow an adolescent to save face by not correcting or arguing with faulty logic at every turn. Try to find what is realistically positive in what is being said and reinforce that.

(iii) Be self-centered: Adolescents can be very “me-centered.” It takes time to learn to take others’ perspectives into account; in fact, this is a skill that can be learned.

(iv) Constantly find fault in the adult’s position: Adolescents’ newfound ability to think critically encourages them to look for discrepancies, contradictions, or exceptions in what adults (in particular) say. Sometimes they will be most openly questioning or critical of adults with whom they feel especially safe. This can be quite a change to adjust to, particularly if you take it personally or the youth idealised you in the past.

Q. 9. Enumerate the important developmental tasks of adolescence.

Ans: The developmental tasks of adolescence are: 

(i) accepting one’s body and using it effectively.

(ii) achieving new and more mature relationship with age mates of both sexes.

(iii) achieving emotional independence from parents and other adults.

(iv) preparing for an occupation and economic career.

(v) preparing for marriage and family life.

(vi) desiring and achieving socially responsible behaviour.

(vii) acquiring a set of values as a guide to behaviour.

Q. 10. List the typical characteristics as well as problems of adolescence.

Ans. The following chart lists typical characteristics:

Area of DevelopmentEarly adolescence (ages 11-14)Middle adolescence (ages 15-18)
Physical growth• Wide variation in onset of puberty and growth spurt, leading to earlier and later maturers.
• Appetite increases during growth spurts and decreases markedly between them. 
• Increased need for sleep.
• Most youth have entered or completed puberty. 
• Less variation in levels of growth and sexual development.
• Many youth have achieved their full adult height and other adult physical development milestones.
Cognitive stage• Individual variation between some children who are still focused on logic and others who are able to combine logical and abstract thinking.
• Developing new thinking skills, such as thinking more about possibilities, thinking more abstractly, thinking more about the process of thinking itself,thinking in multiple dimensions, and seeing things as relative rather than absolute.
• Major broadening of thinking abilities for many youth: can think abstractly and hypothetically; can discern the underlying principles of various phenomena and apply them to new situations; and can think about the future, considering many possibilities and logical outcomes of possible events.
Moral Development• Continuing egocentrism. Often believes self to be invaluable to negative events.
• Increasing ability to take perspective of others into account with own perspective.
• In addition to concern about gaining social approval, morals begin to be based on respect for the social order and agreements between people: “law and order” morality.
• Begins to question social conventions and re-examine own values and moral/ethical principles, sometimes resulting in conflicts with parents.
• Less egocentric with age. Increased emphasis on abstract values and moral principles.
• Increased ability (for some) to take another’s perspective fully; can see the bigger societal picture and might value moral principles over “principled” morality. laws
• Different rates of cognitive and emotional development. For example, often advocates for specific values and violates them at the time.
Self-concept • Self-image can be challenged by body changes during puberty and social comparisons.
• Youth begin long term process of establishing own identity separate from family.
• With the onset of puberty, many experience pressure to conform to gender stereotypes, might show less interest in math and science.
• Process of identity formation is intense. Experimentation with different roles: looks, sexuality, values, friendships, ethnicity, and especially occupations.
• Some girls might experience obsessive dieting or eating disorders, especially those who have higher body fat, are chronically depressed, or who have highly conflicted family relationships.
Psychological and Emotional traits• Intense self-focus.
– Worrying about what others think about them.
-Increased desire for privacy and sensitivity about body.
• Frequent mood swings with changes in activities and contexts. Too much time spent alone can contribute to moodiness.
• For some, increased ability to empathise with others; greater vulnerability to worrying, depression, and concern for others, especially among girls. 
• Many show an increase in responsible behaviors.
Relationship to parents and other adults• Changes in own and parental expectations alter previous patterns of relationships with parents, often resulting in greater conflict.
• Greater focus on peer friendships as youth develops an identity outside.
• Often rebuffs physical affection (but still needs it).• Increased interest in making own decisions; benefits from increased opportunities to make own decisions within scope of current abilities.
• Youth objects more often to parental limitations (but still needs some), resulting in conflict.
• Conflicts with parents often decreases with age.
– Improved ability to see parents as individuals and take their perspectives into account.
– Most maintain good relationship with parents.
• Greater interest in taking on “adult type” responsibilities (own checking account, doing own laundry, buying own clothes, cooking meals, making repairs, etc.).
• Commonly makes most of own decisions, preparing for eventual family.
• Needs balance between time spent with adults and with peers.
Peer relationship• Changes due to puberty and peer reactions commonly alter peer relationships.
• Friendships still begin with perceived commonalities, but increasingly involve sharing of values and personal confidences.
• Might develop cliques of three to six friends (usually same gender), providing greater sense of security. Antisocial cliques can increase antisocial behaviours.
• Peers help youth explore and develop own identity.
• Cross-gender friendships become more common. 
• Antisocial peer groups can increase antisocial behaviours.
• Close friendships help youth with process of developing an individual identity separate from of a child in a family.

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