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    Feb 09, 2017    |   Camille Labrie

Teaching by Type: Paying Both Peter and Paul

In her book Gifts Differing, Isabel Myers describes her conversation with a teacher around the challenge of engaging their students appropriately. “One of the greatest frustrations of teaching,” remarked the teacher, “is that you are always robbing Peter to pay Paul. You design something to reach one group of students, knowing that in doing so you are going to turn off another group.”
The bad news is that this can obviously be frustrating, and can have poor implications for the students in any given class. Without understanding why this difference exists, teachers may run the risk of truly disengaging – and disrupting the performance of – their students.
The good news, however, is that understanding type allows us to not only understand why the differences amongst student learning styles exist, but also how to better provide optimal learning to more students! By using a knowledge of preferences, we see how some kids catch on to certain modes of communication while others do not. And from there, we can start to incorporate more communication tactics that will resonate for everyone.

Learning styles are closely related to the function pairs of every given type; these are the preferences that determine how a student not only prefers to take in important information, but how they also prefer to apply or use the information in a meaningful way. If you teach, or know someone who does, encourage them to think of these different characteristics of each function pair. It is helpful to use as many of these different tactics of communication and activities as possible. It is possible to pay both Peter and Paul – we just have to be intentional about it!

ST Learning Styles

Interested in: Facts about real things – useful, practical information about everyday activities.
Learn best by: doing, hands-on activities
Need: Precise, step-by-step instructions; logical, practical reasons for doing something
What they want from the teacher: To be treated fairly and consistently

SF Learning Styles
Interested in: Useful, practical information about people in a friendly environment
Learn best by: Doing, hands-on activities with others
Need: Precise, step-by-step instructions; frequent, friendly interaction and approval
What they want from the teacher: Sympathy, support, individual recognition

NF Learning Styles
Interested in: New ideas about how to understand people, symbolic and metaphorical activities
Learn best by: Imagining, creating with others and writing
Need: General direction, with freedom to do it their own creative way; frequent positive feedback
What they want from the teacher: Warmth, enthusiasm, humour, individual recognition

NT Learning Styles
Interested in: Theories and global explanations about why the world works and the way it does
Learn best by: Categorizing, analyzing, applying logic
Need: To be given a big problem to solve, an intellectual challenge, then be allowed to work it out
What they want from the teacher: Competence and credibility, and to be treated with respect


Filed under: Type Talk