The first three chapters of Differentiation through Personality Types by Jane Kise were very insightful. I could not agree more with the idea that you cannot teach until you know yourself as a learner. I always thought I was one type of learner, but as I have grown and matured I have finally found what I thought was my niche, but it just ended up being my type.
I found my type to be ENFP or extravert, intuitive, feeling, and perceiving. I completely agree with Kise’s assessment of how teachers teach the way they learn. I find myself reflecting on my teaching daily now. I am now aware that I am most likely reaching the students who are my type, and only checking in with others. I am making it my goal to push my comfort zone and reach all of my students at least one of their preferences each class.
I have a unique situation where I teach three students, and work as a paraprofessional with a dozen others closely. For these fifteen students I now have the ability to see how type really works on a small, zoomed in frame. Rather than having fifty to one hundred students I can start to experiment with type in my daily tasks and see what works and what does not work. I am always working on new ways to differentiate, what better way than to play into student preferences to improve student learning and help them better than achieve flow in their academics. I am hoping to use type to help me implement better techniques for classroom management, academic enrichment and accelerating, working with challenging students and building relationships with students.
“Type theory holds that we have similar personality preferences for how we gain energy, take in information, make decisions, approach life”. (Kise, p. 10) I now see this in my students every day, even in myself. I am an extravert, and I gain energy from being outside, from being in the middle of an activity, from teaching and having my controlled chaos. Even on days when I am just exhausted from everything, I get into school and love having all of the noise and students completing their morning or afternoon routines, running around at recess, or hard at work in the classroom.
Type is already opening doors to paths for differentiation I would have never thought of on my own. Sometimes differentiation can seem like a huge daunting task, but Kise puts it in a way that makes it simpler to look it. Kise has created a framework to be implemented and tailored to fit in every classroom. I am glad to have the opportunity to start using it in mine.