Ability to recognize his/her own personality traits and those of his/her students gives instructor much bigger chance in creating a successful
partnership. The good partnership between instructor, rider and his/her horse is very important for appropriate progress without unnecessary delays.
There are always going to be students to whom instructor relates much better then the others. It doesn't mean that students will only be able
to work with instructor of similar personality. Knowing how other people see life gives instructor tools to find approaches that work with different people.
It was a lot of fun to do self-scorable test to find out my own personality. The test was Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI).
This test has four areas which represent different personality traits:
Extraversion - Introversion: where a person draw the energy from outside or from inside
- Sensing - Intuition: how a person learns
- Thinking - Feeling: how a person makes decisions
- Judgment - Perception: approach to life.
This or other such tests should not be taken as absolute truth. They are only helpful in answering questions to better understand yourself and others.
After everybody in the room found out their personality we all got together in groups and shared our ideas on approach to teaching
riders. Especially it was interesting to find out from coaches of different then mine personality how to teach them with better results and
minimum misunderstandings. For example, Introverts need time to digest the material and they cannot talk about it in the thick of things during
the lesson. Extraverts on the other hands are very comfortable with talking and sharing their experiences. Riders with Sensing preferences
like attention to detail and structure. On the other hand Intuitive people are more likely to see big picture and general guidelines
without much focus on details. For Feelers it is important to have a good relationship, feel happy and appreciated. On the other hand Thinkers
must see logic and have a good explanation why are things that way and not the other. Telling them that they did well without explaining
what exactly and where to go from here makes them suspicious of instructor's honesty. Perceivers like innovation and variety in the lesson.
Drilling something over and over again will make them lose focus. Judgers, on the other hand, want to polish and perfect
until they are satisfied. Which sometimes backfires with horses because horses are not Judgers that is for sure :))
All this knowledge made me think - I'm a Thinker :) about how important it is to take time to get to know your students, to watch them
very carefully and study their reactions to be able to create a successful learning environment.