Decision-Making Study Guide

  Curriculum for ages 9 and under

*If you’re 9 and under, review the content below to pass your Decision Making quiz!


Every decision – regardless of whether it seems large or small – has its own set of challenges and subtleties. Sometimes, what appears to be the most clear cut decision becomes complicated, and sometimes decisions that seem overly complex can be made simpler with relative ease. A decision is a choice between two or more alternatives. The goal will always be to make conscious decisions and to be proactive instead of passive when making decisions. When making decisions, it’s important to consider six consistent steps:

  • Grip it – what is the decision
  • Observe and collect information
  • Link in the right people
  • Finalize the Decision
  • Educate those involved
  • Ready golf – time to act

Example 1 – Should I go to golf practice today?

  1. Grip it – What is the Decision?:
    • I have the option to attend a practice today to learn something about golf.
  2. Observe and Collect Information:
    • I feel like I have all the information I need to make a decision to attend the practice because it was described to me by my coach, I had the chance to ask questions, and I used self-reflection to make sure I had all the information I needed or wanted.
  3. Link in the Right People:
    • I asked my parent/guardian/teacher/coach/friends if there were any conflicts in my schedule or any other information to consider.
  4. Finalize the Decision:
    • I decided to go.
  5. Educate those Involved:
    • I told my parent/guardian/teacher/coach/friends that I’d be coming because it would be something fun and new to do.
  6. Ready Golf:
    • I’m here today!

Example 2 – Should I participate in student council or the school newspaper?

  1. Grip it – What is the Decision?:
    • I have the option to do one activity after school since they conflict, I would like to do either student council or the school newspaper.
  2. Observe and Collect Information:
    • I spoke with both the teachers in charge of the groups about what to expect. I have friends in each group who told me what it’s like and I thought about what I would like to achieve by participating in each group.
  3. Link in the Right People:
    • My parents and I discussed my options and made sure it was alright to stay after school on certain days. My guidance counselor and I discussed the advantages for each group as well.
  4. Finalize the Decision:
    • I decided to participate in student council because I’d like the opportunity for a leadership position.
  5. Educate those Involved:
    • I informed the teacher in charge of student council, my parents, friends, and guidance counselor of my decision.
  6. Ready Golf:
    • The first student council meeting was on Monday and I attended. I’m looking forward to the next meeting!

Personal Values and Decision Making

Personal values influence the decisions we make because we make decisions based on things that are important to us. Being clear on your personal values will help you make your own decisions and for others to understand the rationale behind the decisions you do make. Some examples of values include: Accountability, determination, integrity, adventurousness, discipline, and intuition. Personal values are important in the “Observe and collect information” step of the decision making process. In this step, considering your own personal values and those of others involved in the decision you are trying to make will help you come to the best conclusion. A good exercise to understanding your own values is to consider decisions you made in the past and what influenced those decisions.

Example 1 – Should I continue to practice a shot that I am not good at?
When deciding whether or not to practice a shot that you are bad at during golf practice so you can get it right, your personal values will influence what you choose to do. If you place great importance on discipline, when collecting information and reflecting on your own thoughts about the decision, the desire to be disciplined, especially at golf, will help you to decide to practice the shot so you can improve your game!

Example 2 – What to eat for lunch?
If you find yourself needing to make a decision about what to eat for lunch, you would take your personal values to lead a balanced and healthful life into consideration when collecting all necessary information. During this step in the decision-making process you would think about what you ate earlier that day, if you have plans to eat a less healthy meal later, and how to best incorporate your value of balance into your decision. This might mean choosing a salad for lunch since you plan to have hamburgers for dinner.

Personal values are the things that you think are important about the way that you live. Being clear about your values is one of the things that will help you make good decisions.