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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello there! :3

My name is Serena, and I am a newbie here! I was introduced to MTBI about 6 months ago now by a friend of mine, and learning about my type was honestly one of the coolest things ever. It has not only helped me understand myself so much more, but has also helped me gain confidence and actually be proud of my qualities. It wasn't until about a week ago that my friend introduced me to this amazing website (he says it was because he was kind of embarrassed... because he's become almost addicted to the site...hehe xD). So for this past week I have just been endlessly reading through these forums in awe.

Anyway, these forums have been amazingly inspiring and comforting to me, because I often can feel out of place (as I'm sure other INFP's have experienced) It's crazy to think that there are actually people that can almost read my mind!...but it's awesome! :p

So, as well as introducing myself, I am kind of facing a dilemma that I thought I could maybe get some advice for from some like-minded people...??? :) (If you don't want to read the whole back-story, you could just look at the questions near the end of this post...that would be cool!)

Long story short (kinda); I am currently in grade 12 and graduating in 2 months....meaning I kind of have to figure out what to do with my life. I was considering something in fashion for a while but quickly decided that pursuing fashion as anything more than a hobby would probably kill me. (too much detail work I think is what it is) So after putting that on the back burner I started considering becoming an elementary teacher. I mean, I love kids and always get along well with them. I am quite excitable and have some quirky child-like mannerisms ...so I feel like I kind of get them, haha! However, I am also very responsible and intelligent, and feel like I would be capable at simplifying difficult subjects so they would be easy to learn.

Also, I most importantly love the idea of teaching because you have the ability to be such a role model and have a great impact over the lives of so many people...not only by teaching math or grammar - but being a positive figure that some kids may not get at home. I don't know...there are just so many aspects that make me feel so warm and fuzzy inside when i think about it....But then here's my dilemma...

I quite dislike public speaking and giving presentations in front my classes...and often get quite nervous. I think it's just because they are the same age as me and i feel harshly judged being in high school. I don't know though...it just worries me becauseI think too much and wonder... If I don't like public speaking how 'am 'i supposed to teach? I mean...deep down I know that they are 2 totally different scenarios that vaguely relate, but I just can't help but worry!

Lastly...I have this skewed idea that teachers have to be extroverts...like they have to be super attention-drawing and center of attention and loud and blah blah blah (not saying that all extroverts are...just kind of a general image i have in my head) I guess I just worry cause I don't usually like a lot of attention, but idk...teaching isnt even really about the teacher, its about the students. If that makes sense! Anyway..

I know I am energetic and compassionate and patient which I know are all good traits for a teacher...I am just going through my "over-think everything phase" and could use some outside views....so my question(s) to you are...

Do you think that INFP's can make good elementary teachers? Do you know any/ are you an INFP teacher? If so, what do you/they struggle with and excel at? Have you ever wanted to be a teacher? Or any other other opinions or advice...

Thanks so much for those who actually read this all! It's greatly appreciated! :)
 

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I think that dealing with younger children would be a great career for the "general infp", because it's involves creativit & compassion. I think being "extrpverted" wouldn't matter so much, because there are lots of different teaching styles-- I think for beginning teachres learning how to run a classroom and what kind of things to present takes time. I think being a teacher for older kids, like high school or even middle school, would be hard on some/many infps bceause at this age kids start becoming status oriented and rebellious, and the teacher would have to be comfortable dealing with keeping these kids in line. I natureally feel calm and happy with younger kids, whereas older kids are very stressful for me. I think I'd enjoy being an elementary school teacher with practice, so that's one path for you.

Also sorry for typos my keyboard' really weird for some reasib,
 

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I quite dislike public speaking and giving presentations in front my classes...and often get quite nervous. If I don't like public speaking how 'am 'i supposed to teach? I mean...deep down I know that they are 2 totally different scenarios that vaguely relate, but I just can't help but worry!

Lastly...I have this skewed idea that teachers have to be extroverts...like they have to be super attention-drawing and center of attention and loud and blah blah blah
Being comfortable speaking in front of a lot of children is very much a matter of practise. I much doubt that most first term teacher students feel relaxed in that situation. But I'm sure most last term teacher students do.

Also, even though lectures are a common form of instruction, they are not necessary. There are great educators that don't use lectures at all. And some don't give live lectures, preferring to record a video for example.

I'm planning to become a teacher (although for older students) and I think I will use a lot of video lectures, because I think it allows me to put in more information in less time, and in a smarter way. I can chose my words carefully and I can put in pictures, video clips etc. to illustrate the concepts. Also this allows me to use actual student times in other ways such as leading group discussions or supervising projects etc.

Teaching should not be restricted to certain forms. It's all about using the forms and methods (whatever these might be) I think works best for me when it comes to making my students grow as thinking persons.

I'm sure INFP:s can be great live lecturers. But if you don't believe that's your strenght you don't have to rely on it. You can focus on other methods. It just takes some creativity, and we're quite good at that. If you are interested in art for example there are many ways to use art as a way to promote knowledge and understanding, not just in art subjects but also in english, history... even maths and sciences.



And I think as long as you genuinely like and respect your students and are interested in what you are teaching, then you will be respected as a teacher.
 

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You probably already realize this but I think kids tend to like INFPs. The first time I worked with kids I was worried that I was too quiet or boring but then one day they were all fighting over who got to sit next to me. It made me realize that kids like people who are willing to listen to them and be genuine. I think that you will excel at that.

As for your public speaking worries you are still pretty young and I think speaking in front of others gets easier the more confident you become. When you go to college try and put yourself out there. Speak up in class and ask questions. Believe me it gets easier the more you do it. It also took me a while to realized that people don't focus or notice have as much as you think they do. If you are self conscious becuase you tripped over your words, don't be. Most people don't notice or are worried that they will do the same. You just need to practice.

Lastly, I am an INFP and I want to become a teacher but at the college level. I haven't done a tremendous amount of teaching but for some reason I just know it will be something I enjoy. I get those warm fuzzies too. I think the only thing you might struggle with is defiant students. When a kid talks back or screams in your face it can be really difficult. You just have to learn to stand your ground. It all just takes practice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I think being a teacher for older kids, like high school or even middle school, would be hard on some/many infps bceause at this age kids start becoming status oriented and rebellious, and the teacher would have to be comfortable dealing with keeping these kids in line.
Yes, this rings totally true for me. I don't think I would be able to handle the snobby comments and attitude of some kids my age... I would probably take some of their criticisms too much to heart. But with little kids, you know that their outbursts are due to their young age and minimal knowledge on what's sociably acceptable. I would prefer the angst of younger kids as apposed to older, because I feel like it's more raw emotion, than a personal attack. Which I feel like I could more easily deal with. Thanks for the reply!

You probably already realize this but I think kids tend to like INFPs. The first time I worked with kids I was worried that I was too quiet or boring but then one day they were all fighting over who got to sit next to me. It made me realize that kids like people who are willing to listen to them and be genuine. I think that you will excel at that.

As for your public speaking worries you are still pretty young and I think speaking in front of others gets easier the more confident you become.
Oh my gosh, you read my mind about the 'feeling too boring' thing. I was worrying about that about a month or so ago, but then I babysat for a new family a few weeks ago and the 6 year old just loved me! We colored and played games and all that fun stuff! She apparently has been begging her dad to let me come over to hangout with her! :p That kind of took that worry away for me...because like you said, I feel like kids most of all just want to be understood, and payed attention to. And as for public speaking, I'm glad to hear from someone experienced that it does fade! Even in the past while, public speaking hasn't phased me as much. Thanks!

I'm sure INFP:s can be great live lecturers. But if you don't believe that's your strenght you don't have to rely on it. You can focus on other methods. It just takes some creativity, and we're quite good at that. If you are interested in art for example there are many ways to use art as a way to promote knowledge and understanding, not just in art subjects but also in english, history... even maths and sciences.

And I think as long as you genuinely like and respect your students and are interested in what you are teaching, then you will be respected as a teacher.
Yeah, this makes sense! The creativity is something that I would actually look forward to the most about being a teacher. Because even though you have a set curriculum, I feel like you have quite a bit of flexibility when it comes to teaching style. And yes! Art is definitely an interest of mine, and could especially come in handy for elementary, because kids just love to draw! I also think your video idea is super cool! Thanks for your input! :)
 

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I used to do teaching for a while, but I didn't quite like the idea of speaking in front of a public, especially a child public that means a lot to me. It is always a big depression whenever I remember that I am holding their futures in my hand. Thus this "professionalism" anxiety--"I must get them right", "I must get them right", all the time. It makes me more nervous day by day, and by the end of the profession I quit because I didn't think I could handle those children right.

I think I would not do another session of general audience teaching/lecturing, but 1-on-1 tutoring would be better tuned, since the conversations would be more likely to include Fi.
 

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I'm going into teaching eventually when I get my two degrees to do so. I'll let you know in a few years how it works out.
 

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Personally, I feel more comfortable in a group of small children then around most adults...haha! But I will admit that the 1 on 1, and small groups, works for me. I homeschool my 3 girls. INFPs should be perfect for nurturing childrens natural curiosity for learning, and exploring their vivid, amazing imaginations.
 

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From an INFP teacher

I am an INFP primary school teacher and have taught 7-11 yr olds in the UK for the last 7 years. I do love my job and have no regrets about pursuing this career path as it has given me so many new skills and really helped me to grow as a person. That said, I have just left teaching and have taken a few months off to investigate other options because I find the job quite stressful and draining and, although I am good at it, I have to work very hard to be good at some aspects of it and that has left me quite burnt out.

I thought I would share some of the things I love about the job with you and also, some of the areas in which I struggle. I believe that my struggles are specifically because of certain typical INFP traits that I have. I've tried to address some of the worries that you mentioned in your post as well as highlighting my own areas of difficulty. Sometimes I wish that I had understood myself more when I started on this career path and also that I had understood more fully all that the job entailed!


Nerves about speaking in front of a class
I want to reassure you that the first time I spoke in front of a class (of 5 yr olds) I was absolutely terrified! But it does get easier and easier the more you do it and the more strategies you pick up on for dealing with a class. Try to watch as many other teachers in their classrooms as you can - it really does help. You can try other teacher's techniques and mannerisms on for size and as you gain experience, you will add things of your own and begin to develop your own style. After 7 years of teaching, I’m completely confident standing in front of any group of kids and dealing with them. I even enjoy it! I still don't particularly love taking assembly though...too large an audience and too impersonal. Teaching has really developed my confidence to address groups of people of any age. I would still say it isn't something that comes naturally to me but I'm confident enough in my capabilities that I can overcome any nerves and do a reasonable job. I recently had to speak at a funeral and I don't think I would have been able to do this without my teaching experience.


Introverts performing in an extrovert environment
This has nothing to do with how bouncy, bubbly and enthusiastic you are. I am a classic introvert but would use all 3 of the above adjectives to describe my behaviour with my class at times. Equally, there are times when I am much quieter, calmer and staid with them. Both ways will work with children and actually, all teachers need a variety of approaches in their repertoire for dealing with different classroom dynamics and situations. If you have a naturally quiet and shy class, you absolutely have to be full of energy and spark yourself in order to inspire them to do anything. Equally, if you are all crazy and loud with a classroom full of loud and crazies, you will quickly hype them up to uncontrollable levels of noise and excitement. Part of the enjoyment of the job is reading the room and the individuals within it and adapting your approach to get the best from all of them in different situations. This has nothing to do with introversion or extroversion and is not the reason why introverts may struggle in teaching.

The challenge for the introvert teacher is one of having to be "up" and be the leader in the room all day, every day. It will drain you, in varying amounts, which may or may not be a problem to you. You will be slightly exhausted at the end of the day, fairly exhausted by the end of the week, very exhausted by the end of the term and totally exhausted by the end of the year! After several years, you may have reached a level of mental exhaustion that you feel unable to sustain any longer. Or, you may have found a way of managing this side of the job. I can only speak of my experience. I tend to give a lot of myself to what I am doing, which is perhaps why I feel I have burnt out and need a break now.
It does vary with the age group you teach too. The younger the children, the more draining your time with them is, as they are less independent. You will have less marking, although more preparation of resources to do with younger kids. Lots of preparation involves being very organised - is this something you are good at? If it doesn't come naturally to you, find systems that enable you to be organised. I used to think I was quite organised as I always managed to keep on top of school work etc but it was only when I started teaching that I realised how naturally last-minute and messy I am. I've had to work hard to fight against this and have found my workload backing up to unmanageable amounts on quite a few occasions, as well as having some stressful lessons and situations where I wasn't prepared enough due to disorganisation/forgetfulness/distractedness, which I think are all classic INFP traits.

With the older kids, they drain you less during the day as they are able to work more independently, which gives you more opportunity to work with individuals or take a couple of minutes just to escape into your own head and get your energy back. However, you will have a higher marking burden when they are older. I found that I was often so mentally exhausted at the end of a school day that I struggled to then do another 4-5 hrs of marking and lesson prep after the kids had gone home. I always wondered why, since I happily did 3-4 hrs of homework every night during high school, but then of course, being a student is not anywhere near as draining as being the teacher!


Organisation
The organisation thing I mentioned above is a really important factor and something you should really think about carefully. Being organised doesn't just mean being able to file your lesson resources and paperwork neatly! Your workload as a teacher will be pretty high, whatever age you teach. You will have lesson prep and marking, assessments and data analysis, classroom displays as well as personal research to develop your teaching skills and subject knowledge. The to-do lists will be long and you’ll rarely get to the end of them; if you don't find a way to keep on top of your work, it will quickly snowball and life will get very stressful! Teachers have long holidays to make up for the fact that their evenings and weekends are largely taken up by work. The holidays are payback for this but if your work has mounted up, you'll end up spending a lot of this precious time just catching up on your back log. This isn't meant to scare you or put you off but don't underestimate the amount of work involved in teaching. (Certainly don’t listen to the perception of anyone who isn’t a teacher or doesn’t know one very well! They haven't got a clue!) In the UK, our workload is constantly increasing and is a source of a lot of stress and unhappiness in our profession at the moment. I don't know how different things are in your country so I would advise you to talk to a few teachers and ask them to be really honest about their workload and how they manage it. Make sure you get a few opinions too. I have an ESFJ colleague who is just naturally very organised and barely knows the meaning of the word procrastinate. He is all about doing tomorrow's work today, which is pretty much the exact opposite of me. As a result, he tends to keep on top of his workload easily and finds it all quite manageable and not a source of stress at all. I have to remind myself sometimes that this does not make him "better" than me and that I bring totally different skills to the job that he doesn't have!! Still, most senior management teams are all about the paperwork and sometimes value this skill more than the things that are less visible, such as being able to build excellent teacher/pupil relationships, having creative and innovative approaches etc.


Your INFP caring side may increase your workload/stress.

Be aware that your interest in people and caring nature can be something that adds to your workload and therefore increase stress and disorganisation. Because I care so deeply about the kids in my class and because I am very empathetic, I often find my lunchtimes and breaktimes are taken up by listening to kids who want to discuss their problems with me, or talking with a group of kids to help them resolve a conflict together. This is something that is important to me and is a side to the job that I really enjoy. You may come across kids who are deeply troubled and take up a lot of your time and energy because you so want to help them but sometimes have to accept that your job is really to teach them and there really isn't much else you can do to help them other than be a kind and consistent adult in their lives. I've taught some incredibly difficult and challenging children who really got under my skin and who I felt so frustrated that I couldn't do more for. It is this passion to help that makes me wonder whether I would be more suited to perhaps a career in social work or educational psychology. It is also because this side of teaching is increasingly under-valued, in the current data-obsessed culture. My ESFJ colleague? Listens to the kids sometimes but usually shoos them off outside so he can get some of his marking or paperwork done. He meets all of his deadlines, without stress. I meet 99% of mine, often by having stayed up late the night before because I spend my breaktimes with the kids. Neither of us is better - we just bring different skills to the job. But the point I make is that the paperwork side is increasingly valued over the caring side because teachers are there to get results and not to counsel kids. I disagree with this...which leads me to my next paragraph.


Educational politics and policy in your country. Is it in line with your values?

Without teaching experience, and being younger, you might not have yet developed a strong conviction about how you think education should be. I had little interest in politics until I became a teacher and realised the enormous impact that politics has on the values that drive my profession and how my profession is perceived by the public. I have very strong convictions about what I believe is the right way for ME to teach and largely believe that individuals should be given much more autonomy to teach in the way that is right for them. I also think that a lot of the most important things children learn are not measurable or quantifiable. I find the current system I work in to be so far removed from my own values that I am too unhappy and uncomfortable to continue. In the UK, inspectors sweep in and base EVERYTHING on how well kids can score in tests. It doesn't matter if little Jacob hated school, thought he was thick and wouldn't write more than a sentence when he started in your class but by the end of the year, was enjoying school, believed he was capable of learning and would happily write you a story if asked. If little Jacob didn't score a certain level, by a certain age, or increase his test score by a certain amount over the course of the year, he was deemed to have failed and as his teacher, you would be deemed to have failed him. This may sound exaggerated or melodramatic but it is increasingly the culture of education here and that is what I can no longer cope with. As an INFP, I value little Jacob’s self-esteem, well-being and love of learning far more than his ability to remember his 8x table. Perhaps this quality means I am more suited to being a parent than a teacher… I don't know whether other countries are experiencing similar changes to the UK. Again, I recommend talking to teachers and reading educational news articles to gain a feeling about what direction education in your country is currently heading because it will have a big impact on your job and as an INFP, you have to recognise that if you are working in an environment that doesn't line up with your values, you will experience a degree of stress as a result of this that other types just don't seem to suffer with. My ESFJ friend often agrees with some of my issues but is much happier to just accept things as they are, do as he is told and get on with the job.



Classroom discipline

Behaviour management is complex. Discipline may not come naturally to you but it can be learned – there are tons of great books and websites out there with great advice and you will learn loads watching other teachers too, so don't worry about feeling that others seem natually better at this. What I think it is also important to realise is that all teachers will have their own style and you have to find your own comfort level. You set the boundaries in your own classroom. Others may come in and make judgements, just as you may do the same in their classrooms, but you will find your own level of what works for you and your class. As an INFP, you might not have the most organised or disciplined classroom but it will probably be bright, colourful, engaging and a lovely environment to be in. Your behaviour management might tend towards the less structured, noisier end of the spectrum, but as long as it’s a level that you are comfortable with and the kids are happy, that is fine. You’ll find classrooms that are always quiet and tidy and the kids never seem to do anything wrong. It might be because they have a calm and quiet teacher who teaches and expects them to be the same. Or it could be because the teacher is strict and shouty and scary and the kids don’t dare to do anything wrong. You might step into classrooms where the children are always sitting at their desks and working well. They might be engaged and absorbed in a wonderful piece of writing that they have been inspired to. Or they might be merely filling in a dull and non-challenging worksheet that is easy for them and therefore generating no questions or misbehaviour due to being stuck. Don’t be fooled by appearances when you first walk into a room! Learn a range of techniques, try out which ones work for you in different situations. As an INFP, my approach has always been one of building strong relationships with each child so that they want to work hard for you and also, getting them to understand the importance and value of their work so that they want to do it for themselves too. This can sometimes take longer to implement than mere strict and inflexible routines where the kids work because they are told do, rather than because they want to. It can also result in a slightly more relaxed and informal classroom. That is what I prefer because it allows us all to be individuals in the room, rather than automatons filling in sheets.




The lovely side of the job – making a difference
I hope this doesn't all sound incredibly negative. I can't stress enough how much I love being with the kids that I have taught. Every day when they walk in the classroom, I think how great it is that I get to hang out with them all day, instead of having to deal with a load of bitchy office politics or awkward and rude customers. As an INFP, you will probably be genuinely interested in all of the individuals in your class too and they will feel this and will like you as a result. You will see how some children respond so well to you that you just know you will be one of those teachers that has had a strong influence on their life, which is a great feeling. One of my kids once wrote me a note to say that, after her mother, I was the lady whose influence would shine most brightly in her heart forever (her words). Things like that are priceless and it's the best thing in the world to know you've really made a difference in a child's life. Your INFP creativity probably also means you will also be an interesting and dynamic teacher and you will be good at teaching because you will work hard to find the best ways of getting information across to the kids to enable them to understand it. There may be children in your class that never understood something before until you were able to help them find a new way of doing it or new belief in their ability. Seeing kids achieve something they have found tough or not enjoyed for years is a wonderful thing. In those moment, you really can believe that you have the best job in the world and it makes all the bad stuff worth it.



I'm sorry if I have rambled on for a long time but I hope that you can find some useful things to think about in this post. As I said, I do not regret becoming a teacher and value the way it has developed me and cherish the knowledge of the difference I have made to lots of children's lives. However, with greater understanding of myself and with the changes in the education system over the last 10 years, I can see that it is perhaps not the best-fit career for me personally anymore and I am looking to do something that causes me a lot less stress in life and also gives me more time to pursue the creative interests that are so important to my well-being. I would strongly advise you to spend as much time in a school shadowing teachers and talking with them before you decide whether this would be a career where you could be happy, fulfilled and not be too stressed out or exhausted. Whatever you decide, Good luck!!
 

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I've always thought I'd make a good teacher. It's usually not listed as an INFP career, but it's easy to see how it would work. INFPs are passionately driven people. If an INFP is teaching a subject they love, they can easily fill up an hour or two of class time with intellectually stimulating ideas and information. If an INFP is working in an environment they love, like with small children, their compassion and natural understanding of people can really be valuable. Some kids just need that one teacher who believes in them, or who shows them how exciting a subject can really be, or who is just a safe person to come to.
The biggest problems I can see for INFP teachers is authority-- INFPs are not excellent at asserting themselves, and kids, especially little kids, can be harsh jurors. If an INFP can overcome that hurdle, it's easy to see how they could be wonderful teachers.
 

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I like all the ideas I've read so far! I'm sure that a teacher is a great career, and think of the wider implications it would have. For myself, I took a step back from the moment I thought about and considered my weaknesses, but I think there are plenty of individuals out there who are actively challenging their weaknesses- so why not?

Also, look into your interests and values- while taking into consideration what MBTI may tell you. Interest survey and values surveys will, on the surface, give you more options. However, when you use all three in conjunction, you'll be able to narrow the best possible careers that suit both your personality, interests, and values. You may even find that there are careers you didn't realize that you could apply with what you already know.

Of course, you will come to realize that there are occupations out there that are not listed on these types of surveys- and many of them are bound to the time they were published. I have been on the hunt for a new career and my career coach uses these surveys to supplement her knowledge- allowing me to find the best career that fits for me, but sometimes we can baffle even career coaches, coming up with careers that the counselors are not aware of.
 

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I'm an INTP and I'm also not a big fan of talking in public (sometimes I might go out of my way to avoid it). But when it is a subject I'm passionate about and I'm talking with people/answering questions, that unease often goes away. I also plan on becoming a teacher.

To answer the question though, I think INFPs can be terrific teachers because of their powerful passion for what they love.
 

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I loved teaching ESL one-on-one. I love the idea of being a regular classroom teacher, but I know that I would care too much about doing a good job. I would care too much keeping every single student's interest all the time. I would notice when a student is bored. I would notice when a student doesn't understand. I would notice both of these students at the same time, and I wouldn't know how to please them both at the same time. I am too good at reading signs, knowing what people are thinking and feeling. It would drain the life out of me because I would want to please everybody, and I wouldn't be able to stop...

I would probably prefer high school or college. Adults would be my favorite. I wouldn't be a good elementary student because I am not good at disciplining children. Children are too S-y for me. The school topics are too boring to me. I would want to teach a higher level of subject matter, which would be more N-y. I don't have enough patience. For them, it isn't all about ideas and such. For them, there is so much S-iness going on. They don't have energy to focus for too long. I would find teaching children the most difficult, and adults the easiest. If an adult isn't paying attention, it is their fault. They suffer the consequences. If a child isn't paying attention, I would feel that it is my fault, and that I am letting the parents down.

So, I am too emotionally sensitive to teach a group. I would do an awesome job, and I would burn myself out to shit.
 

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I reckon I could teach a small group very well. I don't fit the INFP stereotype of good with young children, but I reckon I could teach a social science at high school sixth form level. With the right qualifications, I'd quite like to do a university lecture or two.

It would need to be a small group because firstly, I'd want to interact with individuals often as I cannot imagine and impersonal teaching style. I would pay individual attention to everyone.
It would need to be a social science so I can lay on the humour, rants and cynicism and still be right, and because I have good knowledge there.
It would need to be at adult or near-level because I want thought-provoking earth-shaking discussions and debates.

However:
Not as a job, not for long at least. I think I'd burn out. Too much of an extravert's game, I think, there's so much more to being a teacher than teaching. That, and the hours.
If I even made lesson plans I'd have trouble sticking to them. I'd also inevitably end up saying the line:
"Hhhhright. This here is what the specification says I should teach you. That is what you need to pass your exams. That is boring. THIS is what I'll ACTUALLY be teaching you!"

I can see myself being sacked quickly. That's just me, however I expect many INFPs to potentially have the same problems.
 

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In regards to burning out, sicking to lesson plans- especially lesson plans which I didn't agree with, I agree with you wholeheartedly. Some school systems value different aspects of learning, but I'll give an example of something specific that I would avoid, at least in my case...

Teaching English in a corporate setting in Japan. Unless you're filling this duty as a freelancer to a company that wants to do English conversation occasionally, I'd avoid it. Lots of top down "do this, this way, not that way; please, no questions" garbage. The moment you come up with your own idea (again, unless you're in some institution where your idea may be valued), you're toast.

I still think teaching in any aspect is a great match of course... I'd just avoid Japan.
 

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Yes. and here are my thoughts:

1) Generally introverts are better at formal interaction with groups than they are with informal interaction, so can seem more extroverted or confident in a classroom setting where the roles are clearly defined and the students generally recognize your authority, and where you have already planned what you're going to say. Smaller classes are probably going to be more comfortable though.

2) INFPs tend to not have a very commanding presence, so it seems likely they'd either do better with younger children who will be more inclined to look at them as adults (even just because of size) or possibly with university students who are more likely to be there to learn and less likely to be unruly. Especially if your own level of learning is very high, it will command a little more respect.

3) INFPs tend to be very perceptive about others and can really understand what individual students need, they're likely to have a heart for the shy, slow, or troubled kids and naturally want to give the individual attention needed to help them. Tutoring can be a good option.

4) They're also good at coming up with unique ideas for lessons which will engage the students. If they personally love the subject, their passion will show and can be contageous

5) I think INFPs teaching style is definitely individualized and they may have a lot of frustration with systems that require them to be more 'one size fits all'. All the constraints of rules, curriculum, etc. can end up feeling like it's holding back their potential, stifling their creativity in the classroom. Scheduals also can be a very irritating thing to have to conform to. These kind of things may cause school authorities to think you're not a good teacher, even if they have very little to do with how well you are actually teaching.
 

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"It would need to be at adult or near-level because I want thought-provoking earth-shaking discussions and debates."

This is absolutely why I prefer teaching older to younger kids. Believe me, they don't have to be near adult level though. Sometimes, the things that 11 year olds come out with can blow your mind!



If I even made lesson plans I'd have trouble sticking to them. I'd also inevitably end up saying the line:
"Hhhhright. This here is what the specification says I should teach you. That is what you need to pass your exams. That is boring. THIS is what I'll ACTUALLY be teaching you!"

Yep! This has been a daily struggle for me throughout my teaching career!
 

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I'm INFP and a teacher. My dad is also an INFP (I think) and a teacher. My grandfather was either INFP or INFJ, and a teacher.

Here's the thing, no matter what you're like, teaching - the getting up and leading a class part, the authority figure parts - is an act. It's a performance. And it comes with time and experience. Yes, INFPs are generally more suited to small groups and personal tuition. But teaching can be a good outlet for an INFP's performing side, a way to express their shadow functions.

INFPs can easily make the more "genuine" teachers: the ones who really care, ya know? The ones who a kid can go to and confide in. The Remus Lupins of the real world (for the Harry Potter-literate amongst you). That's what I aspire to be. Regrettably I move between schools and get too little time at any one school to form the kind of bonds I'd like. Nevertheless, I've still managed to make some very rewarding connections and I think about those kids constantly.
 
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