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Thread: Typing Children

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    Senior Member SoAndSo's Avatar
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    Default Typing Children

    I'm sure this thread has been done before so please point me to it if it has.

    My question is, at what age can you effectively and accurately type a child? I have 2 children, ages 4 and 5. Is that too young?

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    Quote Originally Posted by kmclaughlin View Post
    I'm sure this thread has been done before so please point me to it if it has.

    My question is, at what age can you effectively and accurately type a child? I have 2 children, ages 4 and 5. Is that too young?
    Speaking as someone with almost no experience with kids since I was one myself...

    I would personally wait until characteristics became obvious on their own, and not exactly try to type them.

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    Senior Member SoAndSo's Avatar
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    They do have what I feel to be very consistant and obvious characteristics.....I guess this question could be better answered by someone who's children are older.

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    Senior Member ptgatsby's Avatar
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    The general belief, I think, in MBTI is that children develop their primary functions first. The others tend to fill in later. Others think that you tell orientation first, but the actual preference doesn't emerge first (ie: x--x).

    In my opinion, what you can tell mostly only the I/E, and any strong existing preference that is unlikely to change. In reality, I suspect that these things are influenced by environment, so the majority can show shifts in and out as they grow up. (Lets face it, teenagers do not behave quite the same as "normal" humans ).

    The answer, however, is "Yes, it is too young to be confident in any typing". Doesn't mean you can't gain from doing it, but don't assume it is true or will remain the same.

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    Senior Member SoAndSo's Avatar
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    That makes sense to me.

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    Senior Member INTJMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kmclaughlin View Post
    I'm sure this thread has been done before so please point me to it if it has.

    My question is, at what age can you effectively and accurately type a child? I have 2 children, ages 4 and 5. Is that too young?
    According to Barron and Tieger in Nurture by Nature, "For most children, all four of their preferences are apparent and identifiable by about age 3 or 4. In some cases, whole types are clear by age two. With still other children, it takes more time - perhaps until about age 5 or 6 before their parents are really sure."

    That said, I suggest parents keep an open mind since most children develop their dominant function around age 6 and their auxiliary function around age 12. This is something Barron and Tieger point out in another book, Do What You Are.

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    Senior Member Kristiana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptgatsby View Post
    The general belief, I think, in MBTI is that children develop their primary functions first. The others tend to fill in later. Others think that you tell orientation first, but the actual preference doesn't emerge first (ie: x--x).

    In my opinion, what you can tell mostly only the I/E, and any strong existing preference that is unlikely to change. In reality, I suspect that these things are influenced by environment, so the majority can show shifts in and out as they grow up. (Lets face it, teenagers do not behave quite the same as "normal" humans ).

    The answer, however, is "Yes, it is too young to be confident in any typing". Doesn't mean you can't gain from doing it, but don't assume it is true or will remain the same.
    Agreed, and yes, most teens are mutants
    j'adore les chats

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    Senior Member SoAndSo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by INTJMom View Post
    According to Barron and Tieger in Nurture by Nature, "For most children, all four of their preferences are apparent and identifiable by about age 3 or 4. In some cases, whole types are clear by age two. With still other children, it takes more time - perhaps until about age 5 or 6 before their parents are really sure."

    That said, I suggest parents keep an open mind since most children develop their dominant function around age 6 and their auxiliary function around age 12. This is something Barron and Tieger point out in another book, Do What You Are.
    Thank for that info..I'll do some more digging!

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    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    Looking back at my kids, now 10, 12, 13, and 15 there are some traits that have been pretty consistent since they were very small. Other traits have changed and I don't think there is a way to predict which traits are which.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

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    I was reading some of the things my brother and I did and said as children, and I would say that there were very evident indicators of our personalities by the times we were about two. He was using words like prefer, destitute and interdigitate by the age of 22 months and I was formulating very lucid arguments and having emotionless responses to punishment by the age of two. When we started school both went through odd patches where our personalities deviated, he became an INFP and I was an INxP. We were both very imaginative and overly sensitive. During the middle years of high school (ages 15-16) we returned to the personalities we had as small children. He is an INTP and I am an ENTJ.

    Has this happened with anyone else?


    Ne > Ni > Ti > Fi > Te> Fe > Se > Si

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