Teaching Introverts

This post is part of a series of posts on teaching to different personality type indicators as found in the Myers Briggs Type Indicator. To see more, head here. 

Today we are talking about teaching introverts! I want to be completely honest with everyone. When I wrote the post on teaching extroverts, it was mainly out of my own experience and not as much research. This post is solely based on research because I have so much extrovert in me that I did not even know where to start on how to teach introverts or what they need. So this post is based on research and conversations I’ve had with fellow introverted friends. 

A few traits of introverted students: 

They need time to sit and think about the material presented, a chance to internalize all of it. 

They cannot thrive without a break from social interactions. 

Calling on them in class or making them present information to large groups can be very stressful for them. 

Watching their participation in class or during a discussion is not a valid way to analyze their knowledge on a given subject. 

Introverted students are the quiet intellectuals. They are the students sitting in the back of the classroom seeming as if they are dozing off not paying attention or like their mind is wandering. Oftentimes when approached with questions on the material in a one-on-one manner, they may surprise you with how much they were paying attention or how knowledgeable they are with it. 

Introverts may have a hard time with social interaction, but they do well with support and in the right circumstances. Smaller groups, familiar faces, and no-pressure discussions can help them come out of their shell little by little.

The way you go about creating a personal relationship with an introverted student can make or break their time in your classroom. If you approach them whole-class with others listening and observing your interactions, it could drive them away from you, and fast. They are more likely to shut you out and have no trust after that. If you take the time to pull them aside, leave them little notes, or utilize email as communication methods, it can help them feel more comfortable and help them build trust in the relationship and in the classroom. 

From an introverted friend-

“I wish my teachers knew that I have a lot to say. I just need the right platform.”

Jade Gunther

With your introverted students in your classroom, what have you found is the best way to teach them? Leave it in the comments, we would love to hear! 

Teaching Extroverted Students

This post is part of a series of posts on teaching to different personality type indicators as found in the Myers Briggs Type Indicator. To see more, head here. 

Let’s talk about teaching extroverts! My articles on teaching using Myers Briggs type indicator have been so popular that I felt like breaking them up this way would be beneficial for teachers and students. 

Graphic from 1069thex.com

But first, let’s grasp what an extrovert really is, and why it differs from an introvert. One way to understand the difference is to look at your focus and energy. Is it inward or outward? Extroverts are very outward in their thinking and energy. They talk through ideas and problems with others and being surrounded by a crowd brings them energy. Versus an introvert, which is very inward thinking. 

A few traits of an extroverted student: 

They need talking and discussing. 

They thrive on social interaction. 

Giving them a chance to be in the limelight can be great for some. 

They typically do better with a faster-paced environment. 

Extroverted students tend to be the school’s leaders, the class clowns, the center of attention. They are always thinking about how they can change the world or figure out a newer, better way for something. They want to be a part of the events and the school how and where they can. 

These students can be supported by allowing social time, assigning group work, and giving them a chance to take the limelight. If you can recognize them getting antsy or needing to move, allowing them to express this outwardly can do wonders for your classroom, by giving them the chance to get up, move, and talk. 

Creating a personal relationship with an extroverted student can make or break their education. They thrive on relationships with others, and role models, such as teachers, are high up on their list of important relationships that they value. 

Are you able to pick out the extroverted students in your classroom? What is the best way you’ve found to support them in their learning? 

Cover photo: pexels.com

A New Way To Look At MBTI In The Classroom

About a year ago I wrote a whole series on using Myers Briggs Type Indicator in the classroom and how useful it can be. It has become wildly popular! It’s incredible to see the difference your teaching can make when you can keep these personality traits in mind. I wrote these specifically for the teacher to analyze their students, but I’m wondering if maybe in the future I should revamp the articles for the audience to be the student, not the teacher? Because it can be so beneficial to know how you learn.

However, I know that with 16 different types of personalities, it can be hard to go through your entire classroom and pick out the type for each student. Because of this, I am going to start a new blog series with a broader sense of MBTI.

As explained in my post about how to figure out MBTI, there are four main parts of finding out types. You can see them in the image below.

I will be doing an 8 part blog series focusing on these 8 areas. How to foster learning with an extroverted student, introverted student, etc. This means you won’t necessarily have to figure out a child’s entire personality type, but instead can focus on one part that you may be struggling with. So stay tuned for this new blog series that may help you in your teaching or in your learning… or both!

Personality Types: Are They Meant To Put You In A Box?

substitute teacher quandry

I’ve written multiple series on personality types and how they relate to education. Read about them here:

Myers Briggs Personality Types

Enneagram in Education

A lot of people are not a fan of learning more about personality types because they feel like they are put into a box when assigned a “type” or “number”. I see this point of view! I absolutely have felt the same way. I have also felt like as I read general overviews of types, I can relate to every single one, they seem very “vanilla” and are relevant to anyone with a pulse.

While these are valid, I have found in my research that these personality types are not trying to put you in a box, their goal is to help you understand yourself and those around you a little deeper. Just because you identify with one “type” doesn’t mean you have to or will act EXACTLY the same way. However, it can help you understand your personality better if there are aspects you do identify with.

For example: I am an ENFJ in the MBTI personality type. This tells me I am extroverted and breaks down what exactly extroversion means. This one in particular I came out with 95% extroverted when completing the test, so it is a trait that I can learn more about and help me apply these findings to my life.

(N) means I primarily use my intuition over my senses. Does this mean I don’t use my senses? No! It means I primarily tend to choose intuition over sensing, however, I can still use sensing at times too.

(F) means I use feeling in decision-making versus (T) which is thinking or logic. I use both, and often! But feeling tends to win over thinking. (J) means I use judgment over (P) perception. I can use both and I do.

Because I identify as an ENFJ I have lists and articles galore that can help me dive deeper into learning more about my personality. Including the ones I wrote. But if an article reads, “you thrive in group work because you are extroverted.” but I personally don’t like group work, it doesn’t mean they are trying to fit you into a box. That is the general consensus of the ENFJ type, and you are who you are. Not many people fit the exact mold or can agree with every single point in their personality type.

So next time you don’t want to research your personality type for fear of “being put in a box”, consider that it’s there for you to learn more and gain knowledge, not put you in a box!

What is your MBTI or Enneagram if you know it? How does it help you learn more about yourself to research personality types?

The Conclusion Of My MBTI Research: My Learning Summarized

This is part of a series of using Myers Briggs personality types in the classroom. For more information, click here. For information on how to figure out your student’s MBTI type, click here. 

In the last few months, I have analyzed all 16 Meyers Briggs personality types. Last week I wrote my 16th post in the series, the final personality type explained. Seeing my research come to an end was sad for me because I’ve dedicated so much time and interest in the subject. A few takeaways I ended  with were this: 

Figuring out student’s personality types can be hard and time-consuming, but also incredibly awarding if you’re willing to put in the work. 

You don’t necessarily need to know their MBTI personality type to know them better. Start with identifying introverts and extroverts and using that information to guide your teaching. Move on to identifying sensing versus intuitive students and then use that as well. 

Students can be aware of MBTI types as well to help them interact with other teachers and peers. 

When comparing personality types, they can be very similar and vastly different at the same time. 

There are not necessarily pros and cons to a personality type, just differences in how we think and who we are. 

Jane Kise has done extensive research on MBTI in the classroom. If I cannot convince you how beneficial is it, maybe she can with her TedTalk. Notice that she doesn’t find conclusive evidence by the majority of students acting and reacting in certain ways, but because every single student of the same personality type has the same actions. 

In the future, look for a post with links to each of the personality types to learn more about how to use your knowledge of MBTI in the classroom. Until then, share with me! How has your knowledge of MBTI helped you in your classroom? 

featured image: thedailybeast.com


Teaching The Boundary Pushers- ISTP Personality Type

This is part of a series of using Myers Briggs personality types in the classroom. For more information, click here. For information on how to figure out your student’s MBTI type, click here. 

Do you have a wandering student that struggles with keeping boundaries? They are confident and realistic in their thinking and learning. This personality type could be ISTP. Although, according to statistics, there is a small chance to have a student with this type in your classroom, ISTPs only make up 5% of the population, making it a lesser common personality type. 

Introverted
Sensing 
Thinking 
Perceiving

Being introverted, they keep to themselves. The way they process information is in a personal way, using all of their senses. They need hands-on manipulatives to sit and work with while they quickly take in the information. Often working in groups or even with a partner can feel stifling to them because they don’t want to be limited by other’s thinking. They never want to discuss topics with peers, they want to answer questions as quickly and efficiently as possible. 

The sensing side of them thrives on using all of their senses to learn. Worksheets and procedural learning are difficult for them to use to understand concepts. In fact, ISTP students are commonly known for having a difficult time excelling in school and are the least likely to continue education beyond high school. 

School systems are built around extroverted, intuitive personality types, which are students who engage with others, work in collaborating groups, and learn in a procedural way instead of learning using hands-on techniques. While learning in a personal setting with hands-on manipulatives is becoming more and more common, it is still not ideal for this personality type to learn in typical schools. A study was conducted asking ISTP types what type of school they preferred. Trade school came in first place with public or private schools receiving very few votes. 

So how can we help these students be more successful? First, be aware of their needs. Give them the independent study time they need, as much as you can feasibly do with the collaboration-driven schools that we are in now. Also at the same time, teach them ways to cope with learning in groups and speaking with peers on learning topics. Provide them with learning that uses all of their senses, and find a balance with their resistance to structure and boundaries. And obviously the most important, just know who they are and be in tune with what they need. That’s the best thing you can do for any of your students. 

How do you keep respectful boundaries with your students who resist them?  

Teaching the “Entreperneur” Student: An MBTI Personality Type

This is part of a series of using Myers Briggs personality types in the classroom. For more information, click here. For information on how to figure out your student’s MBTI type, click here. 

Picture a student that is highly motivated by competition, one that is highly practical, yet disorganized. Perhaps spicy would be a word you could describe this student as. A student that you see someday owning and running their own very successful business. In fact, an ESTP’s nickname is “The Entrepeuneur”. 

Extroverted
Sensing 
Thinking 
Perceiving 

ESTP students have a hard time with theoretical ideas because they are the “get to work now” type. When they find excitement in a subject, they excel. ESTPs are known for jumping in with two feet with an idea and doing the thinking later because they want results and they wanted them yesterday. 

Group work and collaboration are where they flourish, especially with their extroverted tendencies. Bouncing ideas off of peers and working with others gives them energy and fuels their fire to take off and create something great. They are known for their original ideas and especially for making them happen. 

Their quick personalities also give them a love for games in the classroom or anything else that requires quick answers with a competitive environment. They are not ones to sit down with information and take it all in, they need the reader’s digest version of everything so that they can bounce around and move onto the next idea. 

Highly structured environments are hard for them with their perceiving type. They want the room to move and create at their own free will, not under the direction of a teacher. When given the right materials and space, ESTPs can blow everyone out of the water with what they can come up with. 

The sensing type in them thrives on manipulatives in the classroom. They want hands-on experience in everything, allowing them to take in and internalize a concept by doing, not seeing. If they are having a hard time grasping a concept, put it into action for them or let them put it into action themselves, that’s how they want to learn. 

Do you have an ESTP student in your class? How do you see their spicy, driven personality enhance the culture of your classroom?