- Employ techniques like conversation sticks and red/green question cards when managing group discussions and honoring both the introverts and extroverts in your classroom.
- Remind extroverts during breakout groups that silence can sometimes mean that their classmates are still thinking—not that they have nothing to say.
- Allotting teacher “quiet time” during the day can make your introverted students more comfortable asking a question one-on-one vs. being spotlighted during a lecture.
- Personality type assessments at the beginning of the year can help ensure that an introvert who may be a practiced extrovert isn’t inadvertently placed in breakout groups with true extroverts that don’t let their classmate get a word in edgewise after reflecting upon the problem and reaching a conclusion.
- Most importantly, there’s often a parent-child attitude dichotomy that hinders the progress of their schoolwork because a well-meaning parent is trying to employ tactics that were successful when s/he was young. Remind parents during teacher conferences of their kids’ energy preference in order to more effectively help with homework and schedule out-of-school-time activities—but try not to “label” the child as one or the other to the parent because of an energetic prejudice that may exist. Encourage parents of introverts to not force their child into a variety of activities to “draw them out” because they’ll lack the alone time they need to recharge and center themselves. Encourage the parents of your extroverts to form study groups, versus leaving the child alone during homework, so that they can “focus,” since talking out their studies helps them to contextualize and cement the new information.
Ms. Lilienstein is the Founder of Kidzmet and co-author of At Home for Multiple Intelligences, a new course offered by the MI Institute. To find out more about Kidzmet’s Student Snapshots and Pairing Portraits, which can help teachers and parents better understand how their unique kids are wired to learn, click here. To find out more about the eight personality types of children under 12, click here.