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Decision Making Skills Lesson Plans

We are all a result of our decisions. Decision making is an important life skill for students to develop and practice in a safe environment. Making tough decisions can be an anxiety-provoking exercise, and it's helpful to make the process more approachable for students. The following activities are designed to provide students with ways to visualize scenarios and help develop positive decision makers.

Student Activities for Decision-Making Skills

Essential Questions for Decision Making

  1. What are the different types of decisions?
  2. What is a decision making model?
  3. What makes decision difficult?

Teacher Background on Decision-Making

Making decisions can be difficult, and it's unavoidable in every day life. We tend to think there are only a few tough decisions in life, like "should I take this job or that job?" or "should I buy a house or rent?" While these are big decisions, what makes them difficult is the choices. When each choice is equal, it makes the decision difficult. However, there are ways to make decision less difficult by weighing out options, looking at long term outcomes, and reflecting on choices made. Practicing these techniques in the classroom is a great way to ease them in life.

Making decisions may come easier to adults than adolescents. The reason is because as adults, we have an understanding of our goals, values, and standards. We base our decision making on the value of the reward and the confidences we can accomplish it with. Students may not have a self concept or an idea of where they want to be going. This upcoming generation has so many options in life upon graduation they might not be able to choose just one. There are too many choices, and weighing them all out creates an overload. Through these activities, students will develop their ability to think about consequences, reduce stress during decision making, and learn how to make decisions using a idea model.

Additional Decision Making Lesson Plan Ideas

  1. Goal setting - Have students make a storyboard that depicts three positive goals. Description boxes should explain the decisions needed to be made to get there.
  2. Bad Decision - Have students make a five cell storyboard following someone’s bad decision followed with a reflection.
  3. Good lessons from bad decisions - Have students make a storyboard showing a bad decision with a description explaining the lesson learned.

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