The 1950s signaled the beginning of modern teenager culture in America. Before that, there was farm work that needed doing and wars that needed fighting. But, now that WWII was over, '50s kids had time to just...hang out.
The country was prospering economically, too. If you wanted a job — get this — you could get one! Even if you were 16! Kids like the ones in the above photo were able to use all that sweet cash to buy stuff, like this sweet new ride.
Just look at them. They're so much cooler than you ever will be.
When the calendar switched to the 1960s, being a teenager became all about rebellion. The music, the fashion and the culture were all screaming, "CHANGE!!"
Of course, you can't think of high school in the '60s without including the hippie movement. The kids back then didn't have much of an idea on the direction of their lives, but perhaps for the first time in American history, they really didn't care.
In the '80s, teenagers went fully bonkers, fashion-wise. Everything they wore or did to their hair seemed to scream, "LOOK AT ME!!!"
It all boiled down to a basic attitude that, after the exhausting social revolutions of the '60s and '70s, kids could maybe instead focus on just having fun. If you went to high school during that time, congratulations. You attended a 4-year party.
While the previous decades were defined by constant "attitude," the 2000s teens rebelled by being...super corporate. Bubblegum pop and highly-polished teen TV dramas became all the rage. Also, cell phones were introduced on a mass level to this generation. Gone were the ideas of having any teenage freedom. Say hello to, "Check in every two hours so I know you're OK."
And now, here we are. Of course, it's hard to really pinpoint where this decade will end up, but we're pretty sure the number one takeaway will be: smartphones. Smartphones everywhere.
This is a generation who grew up with their entire social experience primarily existing online. They might end up a little awkward in one-on-one conversation, but damn do they know how to take a good selfie.