Written by: Emily Chun, Doctoral Student in Occupational Therapy at Rush University

This week in EPIC, we worked on identifying and setting goals. To do this, we used a strategy called GOAL-PLAN-DO-CHECK. Each participant set a goal, made a plan on how they were going to achieve that goal, did the activities in their plan, and checked their progress throughout.


What is a goal? A goal is something we hope to do or achieve for ourselves or others. Sometimes goals can be simple, like: “I will call a friend”. Or sometimes goals require more work and can take longer, like going to college or finding a dream job.

Why is a goal important? A goal gives our lives purpose and keeps us motivated to achieve new things. Goals are the building blocks to success!


Here are just a few of the great things we accomplished this week:

  • Kelly created ornaments for her Christmas tree! Using construction paper, scissors, pens, and string, Kelly made ornaments representing some of the things she loves in life. She drew her sister’s nickname and portraits and the logo of one of her favorite football teams, the Carolina Panthers.

  • Lucas wrote Christmas cards to his friends to say hello and Happy Holidays! Lucas wrote a card to his friend Quincy, whom he likes to go on walks with. Then Lucas wrote a card to the GiGi’s Group Leaders Giovanna, Kaily, Emily, Justyna, Alexis, and Lexi!

  • Diego wrote a letter to his friend Brenda. Diego wrote that he misses her very much, and he also drew a rainbow flower on the card for Brenda! Diego also made an introductory PowerPoint presentation to help him communicate to others about himself!

  • Colleen wanted to focus on dream jobs. Colleen said she’s a “smart and independent woman”. Colleen said her dream jobs in the future are “to be in concerts, be an actress, be a movie star, model, and work in a music store”. Colleen is already a global messenger for people with Down syndrome and for Special Olympics. Colleen drew a picture of herself and all of her awesome dream jobs!

  • Quincy completed a practice professional job interview with Emily. Quincy talked about her strengths, her challenges, and the qualities she has that would make a good employee. Quincy also reflected on Quincy’s Corner; we brainstormed what went well and what could be improved. She also made a plan for next week’s Quincy’s Corner Group to plan ahead and be more prepared.


Want to try GOAL-PLAN-DO-CHECK at home? Here’s what you can do:

  1. Set a goal! what would you like to get done today?
  2. Make a plan! what do you need to do to meet your goal?
  3. Do it!

Check your progress! Reflect on how it went. How well did your plan work? Did it help you work toward your goal? How did it make you feel? You can use an emoji scale to check how much you like the activity:

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