Intentional Practice

Intentional practice is method that grows the capacity of individuals, programs and agencies to make a difference in the lives of the people they are entrusted to support.

Intentional Practice can be applied by anyone in a supporting adult role, whether they be a teacher, youth worker, parent, manager, supervisor, carer, support worker or professional. It can also be applied and used across an entire program, agency or institution.

Intentional Practice is an umbrella term that refers to any intervention where the  supporting adult (or program/institution) brings moment-to-moment awareness (or mindfulness) of the desired outcomes (“what”) and associated processes (“how”) within the intervention (Raymond, 2016)

Intentional practice is designed to increase the probability that safe and higher impact outcomes will be delivered.

Intentional practice has been developed in response to three problems that impact on the capacity of interventions to hit the mark or make a difference in the lives of the people they support.

It is a ‘how to’ method that brings individual, program and institutional mindful awareness to three key questions?

  • What is the intent or energy we are bringing to an individual relationship or intervention process?
  • What outcomes are we are hoping to achieve?
  • How, or by which method, are we seeking to deliver these outcomes?


At the heart of intentional practice are the following six features (Raymond, 2016):

  • Directed Awareness – it is a method of directing individual and organisational attention or awareness to the key conditions that activate positive growth and learning outcomes. It is underpinned by the skill of mindfulness.
  • Outcome and Process Focused – it brings ongoing awareness to the delivery of outcomes (or the “what”) and the method (or the “how’) to deliver those outcomes
  • Inclusive – it values all disciplines and supporting adult roles, and seeks to bring unity and shared understanding around a common language and approach.
  • Multi-Leveled – it can be applied in multiple ways, for example, to guide moment-to-moment supporting adult relationships, or be applied across an entire program model or institution.
  • Skill-Based – it is comprised of skill elements that can be learnt, acquired and developed by anyone.
  • Empowering – it seeks to empower both individuals and institutions to draw upon existing knowledge and wisdom, and values individual creativity, personalities, interests, needs and experiences.

The following videos provides an overview of intentional practice.