I remember parent teacher conferences. I would get glowing reports about how smart my child was, how she would outscore her peers on most things. They would tell me how polite she was, always listened to the rules and was never disruptive. They would explain that she was well liked and respected by her classmates. She was always on time. All these wonderful things. But they would always end with:
She rarely raises her hand. When I ask her directly she always knows the answers. In fact, she probably has an idea that no one else thought about. We really need her to speak up more. Shyness doesn’t do well in the classroom…
Now we know that my daughter goes to a competitive college. We know that she has leadership rolls and awards. We know that she was a champion debater and moot courter (even on the college level where her university is ranked in the top 25). She was picked to be her high school graduation speaker…
But yet, up until Senior Year the majority of teachers were still telling me that she needed to speak up more…(exception: one teacher who simply said- she shows me in a million ways that she understands everything I say)
But in her stellar academic career, with over 50 teachers, only one teacher ever said that it was OK to not be raising her hand…
SO my question is:
Are kids told from a young age that being an introvert is less than?
Are kids expected to change into extroverts?
Are we telling kids that being an introvert is bad?
Are introverted kids being inadvertently bullied about being introverts?