Title of Activity
Choice and Choice Opportunity
Feature Article February 2009, Choice and Risk
Direct Support Professionals that support individuals with developmental disabilities at home or in the community.
Time for Activity
Flip Chart Paper; markers; and, handouts of Choice Opportunity Worksheet
Photocopy handout; draw grid from worksheet on flip chart paper
|Choice and Choice Opportunity Worksheet and Action Plan Activity||30 minutes|
Presentation Outline (10 minutes)
- Today’s training is about choice and choice opportunity.
- Let’s start with a definition of choice.
- Choice is defined as a statement of preference. For example, when you choose to order a certain coffee drink or a smoothie that you like so much, you are making a statement about something you prefer.
- What are some choices that you made before you left for work today? (Examples: what to have for breakfast, what clothes to wear, drive or take the
- Most of these everyday choices we don’t think about very much. We make them somewhere in the back of our minds.
- What are some of the major life choices you make? (Examples: what kind of job,
- buying a car, where to live).
- People with developmental disabilities usually do not have as much experience making choices as people without disabilities.
- Why is that? (Examples: other people make their decisions, they don’t use words to communicate and we can’t always figure out their choices).
- Why is choice-making so important to everyone? (Examples: we learn to be more independent, it makes your life more fun if you get to do the things you like to do.)
- In addition, the Lanterman Act states that people with developmental disabilities have the right to make everyday and big life choices.
- It is the responsibility of the DSP to make sure that the individuals we support have as many choice opportunities as possible throughout the day.
- A choice opportunity is a situation that provides someone with the opportunity to choose between two or more activities, articles of clothing, foods to eat, and so on.
- Today, we are going to work together on a plan to add to the choice opportunities of someone you support.
- We are going to use this worksheet (Choice and Choice Opportunity Worksheet and Action Plan).
Choice and Choice Opportunity Worksheet and Action Plan Activity (30 minutes)
First, we need to define some of these terms. You can find these on the back of the worksheet:
- Everyday Choices - Such as what to wear, what and when to eat, when to go to bed, etc.
- Activity Choices - Choices about things like going out, choosing activities, when to do them, and choosing who to do them with, etc.
- Money Choices - Does anyone help make those choices? If so, how do they help?
- Big Choices – Such as a job or the program, where to live and who you live with, etc.
Note: The next activities are completed using the pre-drawn worksheet on the flip chart paper.
- Of all of the people you support, who has the fewest opportunities for choice each day?
- Note: Choose someone from the discussion.
Let’s brainstorm for a few minutes about some of the choices that [selected person’s name] makes on his/her own –
- Big Choice?
- Next, what choices in these areas are made with support from you or are made by you?
- What are some new choice opportunities for [selected person’s name] in each of these areas?
- What support will he/she need to get started?
- When will we start making sure that this choice opportunity is added?
- This is great! At our next staff meeting, we can talk about where we are with our plan to support [selected person’s name] in making more choices.
To summarize this activity, we talked about:
- The importance of choice in everyone’s life.
- People with developmental disabilities needing support in making choices by making sure that there are plenty of choice opportunities each day.
- A way to look at the kinds of choices that someone makes right now and how to add to those opportunities using [selected person’s name] as an example.
- What are your thoughts or questions about today’s training?