POV: Michelle McKee

February 17, 2021

Types of Introverts by Malina Wong

Michelle McKee, the Advanced Placement (AP) psychology teacher at Carlmont High School, has tried several different activities and groups for breakout rooms to meet her students’ preferred learning methods. She described how introverts might be handling online school during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I think many of them are probably struggling because they’re being put in situations that are zapping their energy. It not only takes energy away, but it doesn’t re-energize them in any way, shape, or form at the same time,” McKee said. “For an introvert, if you are constantly having to be in breakout rooms, do group projects in breakout rooms, and be in breakout rooms with people you don’t know at all, that can definitely be a very scary prospect.”

Regarding school participation and breakout room activities, McKee believes engagement is a major component in the classes she teaches, but doesn’t think it should be a significant part of the grade.

“I don’t think that it’s always the introvert’s job to conform to an extroverted world — or to an extroverted assignment, like a seminar. I think there needs to be some balance and opportunities for introverts to be able to shine in their natural habitat,” McKee said. “I think we need to not just automatically assume that every student knows how to not be introverted. At the same time… if you really aren’t able to hang a little bit in a seminar-type atmosphere, then I would not encourage you to take a seminar-type class.”

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