Sierra's View: Why I Braintype In My Classroom (and everyone else...)

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Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Why I Braintype In My Classroom (and everyone else...)

Half of you (or 100% of you) are rolling your eyes at me at this current moment because you are sick of hearing about brain types. I know T Money is. His favorite response, "I'm a P-I-M-P." He thinks he's hilarious. After a student found out her brain type last year, she comes up and hands this paper to me. Typical ENTP response ;) 

Some of you may have heard of brain typing, or something similar. Niednagel, the man who originated this, developed brain typing through applying elements of neuroscience, physiology, and psychology to estimate athletic ability and has now expanded it to other aspects of life (career, family, etc.) It is based on psychological typology of Carl Jung and Myers Briggs. Neidnagel uses the same letters as Myers Briggs (he has currently updated to his own letters, but I'm too lazy to learn the new letters!) and there are definitely some similarities except that brain typing, essentially, is focused more on the BRAIN more-so than the personality. People wonder if one's brain type can change, and the answer is no. Your background, family, birth order, and environment definitely affects your brain and personality, so you will see some discrepancies between brain types (especially differences through male/female and religion). It is the whole argument of nature v. nurture. Your brain type is your nature, but your nurture definitely affects it. 

My family started using brain typing when my uncle Danny started brain typing his players when he was coaching the Phoenix Suns to see their athletic strengths: are they more offensive minded, defensive minded, etc. It then trickled down to my family. I like to think I'm okay at it, but my sister likes to tell me that I am not as good as I think ;). Mostly, I am fascinated by the idea of it and just continue to do research on it. 

I started brain typing my family and friends to better understand them. I tend to get frustrated at people (ha), so I wanted to figure out what makes them tick and this has truly helped. You can take a test to help figure it out on or come find me and I have all of the books/info :) 

I started using this in my teaching to better understand my students. For my teaching, understanding my sixth graders' brain types allows me to help them because certain brain types tend to excel/struggle at particular aspects. For example, an INFJ is usually going to be a great writer, while an ESTP is not going to be as strong of a writer. Certain brain types get along better with others and work well with one another, so it helps me seat students. And if I am struggling with a particular student, it allows me to step back and analyze why they may be reacting or acting in that particular way. Obviously knowing their brain type doesn't solve everything, but for me, it has helped enormously. I have done lots of research on this, and I continuously text my sister regarding more information all of the time! It's funny to see people start doing research on their brain types once they figure out. Even my sixth graders find it fascinating and want to hear about themselves. The benefits of knowing one's brain type is to help know your own strengths/weaknesses. It also allows helpful benefits in parenting, romantic relationships, friendships, coaches/players, etc. 

I am an INFP. Knowing your Myers Briggs definitely helps narrow down what you may be, if you already know that. However, your Myers Briggs and your brain type could be different (they are usually quite similar though). 

Essentially, the first grade version of how this brain typing works is like this---There are four possible combination of letters: Introvert/Extrovert (how you gain energy), Intuitive/Sensing (how you view the world), Feeling/Thinking (how you make decisions), Judging/Perceiving(what you show the outside world). Every combination (example: INFP) has different tendencies based on the whole. You start to notice patterns in behaviors based on brain types. 

People make fun of me for this all of the time, but I love how it affects my teaching, relationships and understanding people tremendously. Plus, I can talk about it for hours (much to my husband's dismay). 

....and there's my explanation. Okay. Bye. 

Do you know your brain type? 
I am always intrigued 

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