Person Centered Thinking Resources

Person Centered Thinking Resources

CVRC’s Person Centered Thinking journey is a direct result of funds received from the Department of Developmental Services Efforts to Reduce Purchase of Service Disparities grant.  The feedback that CVRC received from our community stakeholder meetings reflected that our families and individuals that we serve want stronger relationships.  Training CVRC staff, providers and community partners in Person Centered Thinking is one of the strategies that CVRC is focusing on to enhance person centered planning and delivery of services.

Person Centered Thinking underlies and guides respectful listening which leads to actions, resulting in people who:

  • Have positive control over the life they desire and find satisfying;
  • Are recognized and valued for their contributions (current and potential) to their communities; and
  • Are supported in a web of relationships, both natural and paid, within their communities.

Person Centered Thinking (PCT) Skills

Person Centered Thinking Skills are a set of skills that reflect and reinforce values that:

  • Propel the learning cycle
  • Help us support rather than fix
  • Work for humans
  • Work at every level in the organization
  • Build the culture of learning, partnership, and accountability
  • Affirm our belief that everyone can learn

There are twelve core PCT skills.  Below is a list with short descriptions and a link to download a template.  Click the name of each skill to access the template.  We encourage people to utilze any format you have available to you – the templates are just a start.

Sorting Important To/ Important For A way to organize the information we collected when using other tools. By sorting our learning into What’s Important To and What’s Important For we gain a deeper understanding of the person while working towards a good balance. This skill better informs our actions in partnership with the person and those who love them. Use with all the other tools-to add depth to our understanding of the person’s preferred to/for balance

To think through a situation before deciding what should happen

The Donut Sort Identifies role-specific responsibilities. (Core responsibilities; use judgment and creativity; not usually a paid responsibility) Help people get clear about their responsibilities regarding specific situations

Develop job/volunteer descriptions

4 + 1 Questions Helps people learn from their efforts and focus next steps. To evaluate a specific process or effort

As a structure for group review

The Learning Log Directs people to look for ongoing learning A structure that captures learning details within specific activities and experiences. Replace the standard “progress note”

Track efforts related to a specific area of change

Support depth learning over time

Sorting What’s Working/ What’s Not Working Analyzes an issue/situation across multiple things are right now. To get a broader perspective

To do pinpoint problem solving

Before planning next steps

Relationship Map Creates a picture of who is in the person’s life. To record who is in a persons life – their role and relationship

Find characteristics of a good match

To help the person and planners determine who to invite to help plan

Rituals & Routines Identifies the specifics of a particular time of day or event To learn what parts of rituals/routines are important to the person to keep or change.

To learn more about what is important to and for the person

To learn more about daily supports the person appreciates

Good Day/Bad Day A way to identify the specifics of what makes up a good and bad day for a person Use to learn What’s Important To and How to Support

Maximize good days, and minimize effect of bad days

Two Minute Drill Helps us learn critical information about how to best support the person (top tips) To learn what people think is most important to and for the person

To discover information that the new supporters need to be successful

To help people clarify how they balance important to/for when supporting a person

Communication Chart At-a-glance view of key information about how a person communicates. Especially useful in supporting people who don’t communicate well with words. Help people to get to know a person more quickly

Help people know how to support someone during challenging times

Positive Reputation A method to help us learn more about what is important to a person; how to support them while organizing a positive description. Helps people acknowledge the persons positive characteristics

Helps us get to what is important to the person and how to best support from negatives

Matching A structure to look at important “people characteristics” and the persons interests as well as what skills/supports make for good matches. Help people think about the kind of people they want and need supporting them

Hire best matched staff

Help person, family to identify possible circle members


Additional Resources:
The Learning Community for Person Centered Practices
Helen Sanderson Associates
Building Capacity for Person Centered Thinking in Support of People with Developmental Disabilities