Unstuck and On Target!

Unstuck and On Target:

An Executive Function Curriculum to Improve Flexibility for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders, Research Edition
By Lynn Cannon, M.Ed., Lauren Kenworthy, Ph.D., Katie C. Alexander, M.S., OTR, Monica Adler Werner, M.A., & Laura Anthony, Ph.D.
Foreword by John Elder Robison

For students with autism spectrum disorders, problems with flexibility and goal-directed behavior can be a major obstacle to success in school and in life. But flexibility and goal-setting can be taught just like any other skill—and this how-to manual equips professionals with simple, real-world ways to help students with ASD develop this critical aspect of executive function.

A classroom-based intervention approach for high-functioning students ages 8–11, this innovative guide gives special educators and other service providers ready-to-use lessons that promote cognitive and behavioral flexibility in everyday situations, from compromising with peers to handling schedule changes. Developed by a multidisciplinary team of researchers and front-line professionals, the 27 lessons in Unstuck and On Target!

  • are tested and proven. Students in field tests reported clear benefits, including increased ability to compromise and focus on larger goals.
    • Citation: Kenworthy, L., Anthony, L. G., Naiman, D. Q., Cannon, L., Wills, M. C., Luong-Tran, C., Werner, M. A., Alexander, K. C., Strang, J., Bal, E., Sokoloff, J. L, Wallace, G. L. (2014). Randomized Controlled Effectiveness Trial of Executive Function Invention for Children on the Autism Spectrum. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, and Allied Disciplines, 55(4), 374–383.
    • Link:
  • reflect the learning style of students with ASD. Explicit, step-by-step routines, activities, and scripts build on the natural strengths of students with ASD and ensure that they make progress.
  • target specific skills every student needs to learn more effectively, participate successfully in the classroom, reduce stress, get along with others, set and achieve goals, problem solve, complete tasks independently, and more.
  • free up teacher time. Educators will spend less time supporting students with flexibility challenges and more time on teaching.
  • fit easily into any curriculum. Lessons are easy to use and don't require extensive planning.
  • make learning fun, with engaging games, role-plays, stories, and lively class discussions.
  • ensure generalization. Take-home worksheets for each lesson strengthen the home-school connection and help students transfer their new flexibility skills to other settings.

Ready for any professional to pick up and use, this complete guide gives users clear instructions, materials lists, and modifications for each lesson, plus invaluable Teacher Intervention Tips that help general educators reinforce the lessons throughout the school day. And with the included CD-ROM, it's easy to print all of the game cards, student worksheets, and other materials needed to conduct the lessons.

With this effective, user-friendly approach to executive function intervention, students with ASD will develop the flexibility skills they need to reach their goals, enjoy healthy relationships, and succeed in school and in the community.