During the years from 10 to 18 the youngster is confronted with a series of problems for which he has to find solutions suitable and acceptable to himself, to his parents, and to society. He can find the solutions and adjust his life pattern either in a gradual, smooth and comfortable way or in stormy forward bouts and retreats: this will determine his life during adolescence. The nature and suitability of the solutions and his acceptance of them as his way of life will determine his integration into adult society.

Advancement to high school requires adjustment from one teacher to several, from a prearranged curriculum to some choice of subject, from day to day assignments to projects extending over weeks, requiring responsibility for planning that are now to be assumed by the student rather than the teacher. The youngster becomes concerned about his career and begins to understand the connection between his present schooling and future life plans.

His thoughts about his choice of profession still vacillate between an immature wish for gratification of immediate desires (he wants to be a taxi driver because he likes to ride in cars) and a more mature ability to postpone gratification and engage in long-range planning. He learns to consider his interests, abilities, opportunities, and ultimate returns from his work and begins to favor them over the immediate returns. His plans and his ability to carry them out will depend upon his emotional maturity. He is in need of guidance to assist him with his decisions, and to supplement his partially matured conscience, self-control and super-ego.

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