Expectations Matrix: Frontloading and Debriefing Activity

Expectations Matrix: Frontloading and Debriefing Activity

Approximate Running Time: 5-10 minutes for each portion (pre-program, during program, end of program)

Minimum Group Size: 1 participant

Maximum Group Size: 1000+ participants

Age/ Level: 8 and up

Space Required: Enough floor or chair space for every participant to sit and write, enough wall or board space for each participant to put 3 sticky notes on the walls/ boards.



  • 3 sticky notes per person
  • 1 pen or pencil per person
  • 3 signs for the walls/ board: “Unmet Expectations”, “Partially Met Expectations”, “Met Expectations”


Set-up: Place the three signs on three separate walls, or spaced as far apart as possible. Provide at least three post-it notes per participant, plus one pen. You may wish to set these up before the participants enter the space.


The objective of this activity is for the participants to take a moment to reflect on and then articulate their expectations for the program, and their personal role in meeting their own, and their peers’, expectations.

The objective is also to inform facilitators and educators about the participants’ expectations, in order to target their needs and clarify the overall program objectives.

Facilitator Guidelines:

  1. Introduce the activity with a discussion about overall program objectives and attention to intention.
  2. Ask participants to take a moment to reflect on the following questions:
  • What are you hoping to take away from this experience?
  • What do you think your peers/ colleagues are hoping to achieve from this experience?
  1. Ask every participant to write one of their expectations for the program on each of their sticky notes.
  2. Invite participants to stick their sticky notes onto the wall/ board underneath the “Unmet Expectations” sign. This is the end of the first stage of the activity.
  3. Half way through the program (or at shorter intervals if you see fit), offer participants time to consider their expectations and either leave them where they are or move them under the signs for “Partially Met” or “Met” expectations.
  4. At the end of the program invite the participants to move their expectations again. Debrief the activity by talking about the “Unmet” Expectations as opportunities for the group/ community to work together and meet those expectations. Take photos of all of the “Met”, “Partially Met”, and “Unmet” expectations to provide to the partner after the program.


Facilitation Variations:

In a small group the participants can write their expectations directly on chart paper or a whiteboard, and then if/ when they wish to move it they can cross the expectation out and add it to another board. Using whiteboards for small groups is more environmentally friendly and just as effective.


There are two main versions of Expectations Matrix:

Version 1:

Unmet Partially Met Met


In Version One there are 3 options you have for categorizing your expectation: Unmet, Partially Met or Met.


Version 2:

  Met Unmet


In version 2, you have 4 options to categorize your expectations. Spoken & Met, Spoken & Unmet, Unspoken & Unmet, Unspoken & Met


First, you need to define your terms.


What do we mean by spoken & unspoken expectations?

  • In this activity, to “speak” an expectation could mean that you write it down and put on the matrix or it could mean that you write it down, verbally speak it to the group, and put it up on the matrix. You can choose either
  • Spoken & Met
  • Spoken & Unmet
  • Unspoken & Unmet
  • Unspoken & Met


In order for JUMP! Facilitators to understand expectations of participants when they start the program. JUMP! most commonly does Expectations Matrix at the beginning of the program, in the first block, although that doesn’t always need to be the case