Personality Profiles and Professions!

flexschool personality inventory

Today our college counselors, Nicole and Elana, conducted a personality inventory and career forum with our FlexSchool students.  The counselors discussed the origins of the MBTI, or Myers Briggs Type Inventory, and how the test began with the father of psychology  Dr. Carl Jung, who observed that people might fall into different archetypes.  This led to the creation of the test by a mother and her daughter; the mother (Katharine Briggs) wanted to determine how compatible her daughter (Isabel Myers) and her fiance were.

The students had completed abbreviated MBTI evaluations during the week, and Nicole revealed the students’ results during today’s session.  Students were sometimes surprised about where they fell on the different attribute spectrums:  Introvert or Extrovert, Intuitive or Sensory, Thinkers or Feelers, and Judgment or Perception.

The students were given their individualized reports and personality types as determined by the website.  Their reports placed them on each continuum, which they illustrated by moving around the room, so some students were on one side of the room or the other while others were more in the middle.  Among our students, teachers, and staff participating, we had representatives from the following “portraits”:  The Idealist, the Protector, the Nurturer, the Caretaker, and The Inspirer.  We discussed how certain cultures or countries might fall into one personality category, but then how these could shape stereotypes since a country is formed by individuals who have varied personality types.

We talked about the notion of Nature vs. Nurture and how personalities are generally established but how behaviors can change.  Knowing your personality type, and that of those around you, can help with relationships between parents and children, coworkers, and romantic partners.  Awareness of these personality types can even help students determine which professors might mesh with their learning styles.  Elana discussed how the personality inventories relate to career choices and exploration.  The students’ individualized online reports were connected to the Department of Labor website so students can monitor careers and job availability.

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FlexSchool Prejudice and Discrimination Awareness

flexschool discrimination and prejudice awareness education

Today’s FlexFriday continued with themes of racism, discrimination and genocide.  Bob emphasized that we study history because we try not to repeat it, but that unfortunately we often do.  In discussing genocide in Armenia, we learned about the Caucus mountains and how Caucasians typically dominated.  We learned how Europe did not come to the assistance of Armenia, partially because of its geographical location and because many European countries’ resources were being depleted because of the concurrent war.  There was a conflict between the Christians (Armenians) and Muslims (Turks).  The Ottoman Empire was on the decline and the Young Turks were plotting a coup. The Turkish triumvirate (three dictators) came into power and initiated a purge in 1915, when the Armenian intelligentsia–professors and the educated in general–were rounded up by the Turks and executed.  A variety of brutal atrocities against Armenians continued, including marching families into the Syrian desert to their deaths, seizing their villages, and attacking the women.  Bob talked about how some of his ancestors, including his grandparents, had experienced the genocide but did not tend to talk about it.  In total, 1.5 million (out of 2 million) Armenians perished during the genocide.

The students continued to discuss prejudice and discrimination and how it reverberates in America today.  For the second half of today’s lecture, we watched a film on Emmett Till, a young black boy who was killed in America during the 1950s.  The two white men who were indicted in his murder were found not guilty, then set free; they eventually sold their story, in which they freely admitted to killing Emmett.  Emmett’s mother had an open casket because she could not put into words what had happened to her young son:  he had been beaten, shot in the head, and then his body thrown in a river weighted down by a 75 pound machinery part.

In addition Bob showed the students a traditional Turkish hand-made wedding gown.  He continued talking about Middle Eastern culture and gave us samples of literature from Kahlil Gibran, the early 20th century Lebanese-American poet, philosopher and author of The Prophet.  We examined such truisms, as “Generosity is not in giving me that which I need more than you do, but it is in in giving me that which you need more than I do” and “Those who give you a serpent when you ask for a fish, may have nothing but serpents to give.  It is then generosity on their part.”

Our series concluded with two of the students talking about the gay rights movement and the discrimination endured by this population in the US and in other countries.  Finally, Bob treated everyone again with some Middle Eastern cuisine for lunch:  Chicken Kabobs!  We learned that people used to use swords or knives as the skewers…don’t worry; they took the food off before eating it.  Next week the students will have a career forum with our college counselors.  At FlexSchool, we balance academics with real-world career readiness skills.

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At FlexSchool, we build our curriculum around providing all around high-quality educational experiences for our students. Visit

Racism and Genocide Awareness

FlexSchool Armenian Genocide Talk

As part of this month’s topics of Racism and Genocide Awareness, one of our own tutors gave a talk on the Milgram Psychology Experiment from the 1960’s and the Armenian Genocide.  Bob, FlexSchool’s high school History teacher, brought in some authentic pieces his family had obtained in Turkey:  a Samovar and a handmade chandelier. He explained that not only was the Samovar used for coffee or tea, but it could also be used as a heater.  He talked about the significance of backgammon in Middle Eastern culture.  He showed a clip from the movie Experimenter (2015), a drama based on the Yale University research experiments Dr. Stanley Milgram (a psychologist) conducted in the 1960s.  The experiments reveal much about human nature, obedience, and the significance of authority and may shed some insight into why humans commit atrocities against each other (such as the Armenian genocide, Jewish Holocaust, and genocide in Serbia and Rwanda).  Milgram’s revolutionary experiments unveiled the proverbial elephant in the room, “the banality of evil” (as coined by Hannah Arendt), an aspect of human nature that we all like to think we’re immune from.  Bob and the movie discussed how the trial and execution of Nazi and Hitler’s right-hand man, Adolf Eichmann, were in the news.  Eichmann seemed to rationalize his actions committed during the Holocaust, and Milgram’s findings could be a clue as to why Eichmann did what he did.  After showing the clips, students discussed the implications and relations of the experiments to historical events.  Following the presentation, students had a surprise FlexFriday lunch:  authentic Armenian/Lebanese/Middle Eastern dishes brought in by Bob.   The students and faculty feasted on hummus, tabouli, baklava, stuffed olive leaves, figs, dried apricots, and other delights!

Authentic Armenian lunch FlexSchool.jpg

Click here to see images from this event and more on our FlexSchool gallery.

At FlexSchool, we build our curriculum around providing all around high-quality educational experiences for our students. Visit

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

metropolitan museum of art flexschool

Despite local school closings due to a snow storm, our intrepid students took the train to NYC for a special tour at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Sean Hemingway, the curator of Greek and Roman Art at the Met, lead FlexSchool and the Connecticut Experiential Learning Center (CELC) in a fascinating private tour of some of Sean’s favorite pieces. Students became increasingly excited about the art during the tour. When we got to the mythological symbolism in the paintings recovered from rooms in Pompeii, the students were hooked! A rare ceremonial Monteleone chariot was the final exhibit. The 2,600-year-old Etruscan chariot was made of bronze and wood and decorated with ivory. While it had originally been restored in 1903, the then curator had only had drawings to inform how he put the pieces together. The straight pole to be harnessed to horses had always puzzled the more recent curators, but it wasn’t until Adriana Emiliozzi, an Italian archaeologist and the world’s leading expert in Etruscan chariots, visited the Met that the chariot was restored in its correct form. (See the NY Times article here)

Sean Hemingway’s enthusiasm was contagious, so students explored the Greek and Roman collections long after he had to return to his busy schedule.

After lunch, students broke into groups and chose exhibits they wanted to see. The choices were interesting: couture fashion, architectural containers, African art, and European sculpture!

met cultural art flexschool nj

We enjoyed our trip through history so much that we bought tickets for the Vikings exhibit at Discovery Times Square for this spring. Check back later for a report on that adventure!

Click here to see images from this event and more on our FlexSchool gallery.

At FlexSchool, we build our curriculum around providing all around high-quality educational experiences for our students. Visit