Roland Martin - Issue #62





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Roland Martin

October 9 · Issue #62 · View online

Headmaster - City of London Freemen's school; Chief Officer - City of London; Chair - Society of Heads - '...write things worth reading, or do things worth the writing' Benjamin Franklin

The introvert within …

Dominance complementarity
Listening to Nicola Morgan at the HMC conference this week, having already dipped in and out of her books on the teenage brain at home, one of her power-point slides made me revisit the need to support introverts within a school context.
Extroverts and Introverts: In a nutshell. Extroverts thrive and re-energise through engaging in social situations, and feel more drained when alone; introverts do just the opposite, gaining their energy from time on their own to think. The Harvard Business Review’s 2015 article by Professor Francesca Gino is illuminating on this subject, starting with a rank yourself extrovert/introvert template. There’s a more detailed quiz of sorts here, assessing CEOs against each other on a sliding scale of qualities. 
On a personal level, I came out as an extroverted introvert in a similar profiling thing you sometimes have to do in job interview situations, and I’d like to think that I fundamentally tick some of the boxes for what’s so good about introverts, but we are very much a mixed household both at home and within the SLT at Freemen’s. I’d wholly disagree with Pierce Brown’s claim in Golden Sun: ‘There is no greater plague to an introvert than the extrovert.’ Come one, come all.
No discussion of introverts is complete without a nod to Susan Cain’s TedTalk, the power of introverts. I recognise much here as being inherent to the introverts in my life.
An interesting read in the HBR discusses the subsets of four types when analysing team/business chemistry; I was taken with the idea also that the ‘neurotics’ (their term!) are who get things done in the UCLA study of types.
This 2016 article from David Cutler, a teacher in Boston, has been doing the rounds again recently. It takes a look at how to balance group and individual work within a classroom context.
It looks back over its shoulder at this 2012 piece, also on edutopia: 
Introversion and the Invisible Adolescent | Edutopia
Not to be forgotten - although they might not always seem to - extroverts do need support too! Fabian Koh in The Straits Times writes charmingly about how needy extroverts really are. My wife aligns herself with a number his points quite merrily … she remembers a school trip when she was 12; her camera was somehow broken and she became uncharacteristically upset and homesick. It was her teachers who didn’t expect it and were most surprised; like Fabian, she was expected always to be super-cheery. Hence, I’m ending with a link to an article on how to ensure that extroverts thrive too.
How to Help Extroverts Thrive in the Classroom | Edudemic
Specifically English ...
As a sort of footnote, the English teacher in me couldn’t resist this piece; such is the power of fascinating language shifts. Starting a sentence with ‘so’ seems to have afflicted even some of the most articulate people I know; fighting the ‘like’ battle at home with our youngest does not, I know, make us unusually pedantic; writing Star Trek! in the margin of exercise books is something I do admit to having done over the years - I haven’t quite got my head around splitting infinitives just yet (even though I’m begrudgingly aware that they’ve started to slip into my own prose):
Teachers told to stop stressing about split infinitives, as study finds they are now part of everyday language
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