Take 2: Teaching Children w/ Autism Washington, DC

by Take 2: An Innovative Program for Social Learning

To our wonderful friends, family and Take 2 supporters,

Thank you for all your help!

Yesterday’s Bonus Day was a huge success for Take 2.  Huge.  Incredibly, in that one day, we raised $11,055 from individual donations and matching support from Global Giving.  That’s really just incredible.  These funds will directly support this summer’s work, which begins officially next week, though of course Lynn has been busy with planning for a much longer time.  We will thank each of you donors individually by the end of the week, but in the meantime want to extend this big electronic group hug and thank you all collectively.  THANK YOU SO MUCH. 

With love, gratitude and, frankly, amazement,

Lisa, Monica & Lynn

Dear Friends,

It’s that time again: Global Giving is matching ALL donations we receive today, Wednesday, June 13, at 50 percent.  This is a really important opportunity for Take 2.  If you are able, please help us raise the funds we need for this camp season, which begins June 25th.  You can click here to donate: http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/teaching-children-with-autism/.   You can also learn more there about Take 2. 

We did this match campaign once before, in October of last year, and it was enormously beneficial.  Our costs are low – other than staff salaries we have very few expenses – but we rely on this help from generous friends because camp tuition doesn’t cover our necessarily low staff to child ratio, and in addition we are committed to providing financial aid to any family that needs it.  This year, 60 percent of our campers are receiving scholarships.

We’re grateful for your support every day, but on this one day your generosity will be amplified, so please donate if you can.  Last year Global Giving matched our fundraising at 30 percent, but this year, because we are one of their organization “Superstars,” they will match for us at 50 percent. Please give early in the day, before the matching funds run out.

Global Giving continues to be a fantastic resource for Take 2.  In April we visited their offices and met with staff to learn more about how we can get even more out of this relationship.  They give us the benefits of an infrastructure we couldn’t possibly afford, and that allows us to devote more of our time and funds to running a terrific program.   As I write this, Monica is actually in Puerto Rico working with a group that is using the Take 2 curriculum to start its own program for children with autism this summer.  We are delighted to support that effort.

Thank you so very much for any help you can give us.   And, by the way, if you know how to do this sort of thing, please post  to your Facebook, Tweet to your followers, or do any of that tech-savvy stuff that we are still too old-fashioned to take advantage of!  Or just call or email friends and relatives and let them know about this opportunity to do good.  


Lisa, Monica and Lynn

Since Take 2 began in 2004, clinician-researchers at the Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders at Children’s National Medical Center have been integrally involved in developing the program’s curriculum.  Several years ago, the CASD doctors, together with Take 2 staff and teachers and administrators at the Ivymount School, developed and began piloting a novel approach to teaching children with autism spectrum disorders the important skills of flexibility, goal-setting and planning.  Difficulty with these and other “executive functions” are common in children with high functioning ASDs.   The collaboration has so far proved extremely fruitful: based on early successes, the National Institute of Mental Health awarded the group a grant to take the next step in testing the intervention:  the curriculum, called Unstuck & On Target, is now being tested in mainstream schools.  In addition, the curriculum has been published and is available to parents and educators who would like to give its methods a try.  The approaches described in the book are designed to be enjoyable and accessible and to integrate well into children’s real lives.  You can see the cover of the book at the top of this Project Update and you can  read more about it on the publisher’s website and on Amazon, which you’ll find links for below.  The forward to the book is by New York Times best-selling author John Elder Robison.  A training program for parents is part of the Unstuck curriculum and there are plans to publish soon the manual that accompanies this training. 

We are very proud that Take 2 played a key role in launching this much needed and so far extremely promising new intervention. 

As always, we thank you for your support for Take 2.  Also, we'd like you to know that in June Take 2 will participate in GlobalGiving’s “bonus day,” when all gifts will be matched.   We’ll be in touch with you before that to ask for your help. Please see below for links and for a glowing review of Unstuck & On Target.

With gratitude,

Lisa, Lynn & Monica

Here are links where you can learn more about Unstuck & On Target



And here's a recent review from Amazon:

5.0 out of 5 stars The most helpful book I've ever bought!, April 4, 2012
Amazon Verified Purchase
This review is from: Unstuck and on Target!: An Executive Function Curriculum to Improve Flexibility for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders, Research Edition (Paperback)
This book has helped me on so many levels help my son who has autism. I can take him shopping or take him to school; have him try new foods at a restaurant and even have him do something totally off his schedule and not have the meltdown explosive behaviors that he use to have. One of the things that this book teaches is that if I want him to be more flexible then I have to model what that looks like for him. I've learned to help him realize that when he is stuck that there are coping strategies that he can use. My son is so much more relaxed and I am so proud of how he is able to breathe and calm himself down rather quickly.

I recommend this book to anyone who has a child in need of being more flexible and goal directed!!


Dear Take 2 Supporter,     

There's no "ask" here, none at all. You're getting this email because you've generously supported Take 2 in the past and we'd like to take a moment, as we prepare for our ninth summer (!) to thank you for your help and tell you a little about what went on at Take 2 this past fall.  Here is director Lynn Cannon's wrap-up:   

      This fall, some of our summer campers were reunited for a weekly social learning group that was designed to reinforce and expand on the skills and concepts they had learned over the summer.  The theme of the fall group was “learning to C.H.I.L.L.” This is also known as “hanging out.”  What’s involved in that?  You know, things like playing video games, enjoying a meal together, exchanging gifts – the goal was to simulate the ways that typical late elementary and early middle school students spend time with their friends.

To C.H.I.L.L you need to:

C- ompromise

H- idden rules (follow them!)

I- nitiate conversation

L- isten

L- augh, when everyone laughs

      Campers’ parents were also reunited in the fall program. Once a month, parents came together to discuss the group themes and generalization opportunities and to participate in our guest speaker series. Guest speakers included a speech and language pathologist who shared strategies for improving conversation skills, facilitating play dates and other peer interactions, and expanding social thinking. We were also joined by a local education advocate who provided tips on how to obtain appropriate special education services, and where and when to start the challenging search for the right middle school.

      Everyone took away something from our groups this fall. For parents, it was some useful planning tips and a chance to connect with a community of parents. For staff, it was the chance to see a group of boys re-unite and ultimately, and independently, “C.H.I.L.L” over a pizza dinner- laughing and chatting the whole time. Most importantly the campers had an opportunity to spend an hour each week re-connecting and enjoying time with their friends!

Thank you again for your generous support of Take 2.  We couldn't do it without you -- we really couldn't!


Lynn, Monica & Lisa

Practicing friendship skills at Take 2
Practicing friendship skills at Take 2

Dear Friends of Take 2,

     Please consider a gift to Take 2 on Wednesday, October 19 as early in the day as possible.  GlobalGiving, our fundraising and communication partner, will match at 30 percent all gifts made on that day, beginning just after midnight Eastern Daylight Time the night before.  If you were thinking of an end-of-year gift, please consider making it a bit early to take advantage of this one-day match.  If you’ve never given to Take 2 before, we hope this incentive will appeal to you.  Gifts of up to $1,000 will be matched at the 30 percent level until GlobalGiving has exhausted $100,000.  We participated in this fundraiser last year and it gave us a very helpful boost.  Particularly since Global Giving partners with projects in different time zones around the world, it’s important to make your online gift early on Tuesday the 19th.  And if you can go one step further and post this fundraiser to your Facebook or Twitter account, that would be wonderful and very much appreciated. 

      While GlobalGiving has a big-sounding name and collaborates with large corporations to attract donations from their employees to projects like ours (employers like Gap distribute $10 or $20 gift cards to employees who use them then give to to the charity of their choice), we think you’ll be interested to know that Take 2’s relationship to GlobalGiving is very personal and accessible.  We learned of GlobalGiving from a neighbor who worked there.  GlobalGiving's creative and enthusiastic staff have helped us in a variety of ways that have benefitted our shoestring operation. They boosted Take 2 in a local radio show earlier this year and obtained newspaper coverage of our camp the year before. They have connected us with numerous small donors we would not have reached otherwise and provide us a platform for communicating with our supporters.  We're proud that GlobalGiving thinks of us as one of their success stories and we hope you'll feel good about giving to us through such a terrific organization. 

     Here’s a link to our Project Page on Global Giving, where you can make your donation on a one-time basis or as a monthly recurring contribution.  http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/teaching-children-with-autism/

     In addition, here’s a link to a really terrific story that ran on the front page of the Sunday New York Times a few weeks ago, describing the challenges that face individuals with autism spectrum disorders as they transition to adulthood.  http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/18/us/autistic-and-seeking-a-place-in-an-adult-world.html?_r=1&scp=5&sq=autism&st=cse (Autistic and Seeking a Place in an Adult World)

     At Take 2 we know it takes more than strong cognitive ability and verbal skills to succeed at work and in the community.  Take 2 helps children in their quest to obtain the keys to the social kingdom we all live in.  Please give as generously as you can as early as possible on Wednesday, October 19th.  We thank you very much. 

Warmly and gratefully,

Lynn Cannon, Monica Adler Werner & Lisa Greenman

Take 2 Camp Director Lynn Cannon
Take 2 Camp Director Lynn Cannon



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Organization Information

Take 2: An Innovative Program for Social Learning

Location: Alexandria, VA - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.take2camp.org/​
Project Leader:
Lisa Greenman
Washington, DC United States

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