Learning how to deal with being inside during the Covid-19 Pandemic

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If you’re feeling trapped because you can’t leave your house or interact with people who aren’t family members, I’ve got a list of things you can do to productively pass time.

  1. Write in a journal
    1. Whether you’re a writer, or just have something you want to say, but no one to talk to, writing in a journal is a great way to express yourself.
    2. It can be happy things or sad, it depends on what you’re feeling at the moment. It really helps.
  2. Pray
    1. If you’re a spiritual or religious person, praying in times like these might be the best remedy.
    2. You can also go on websites that provide daily devotionals
  3. Read a book
    1. Reading a book is a great way to divert your attention to something other than negative thoughts.
    2. Whether you’re reading fiction, nonfiction, chapter books, or picture books, just read something you’ll enjoy.
  4. Start a hobby
    1. Some people like collecting certain items, or doing activities as a break from life.
    2. Different hobbies or collections include scrapbooking, coin collecting, trading cards, sports memorabilia.
  5. Sing a song
    1. Singing a song is a great way to express your creativity.
    2. It’s a great way to spread joy in yourself and others.
    3. The key is singing something upbeat, otherwise it defeats the purpose, which is to lighten the mood of your day.
    4. If you don’t know the lyrics, go to youtube and find a sing-along version so that you can practice the words.
    5. It’s a good mind exercise.
  6. Watch a movie
    1. Watching a movie is always a great way to pass time.
    2. You can watch something new, or something that you’ve seen several times.

I hope this helps you handle the stress of staying home.

Jake M.

If you enjoy sports, please visit Jake’s blog: Jake’s Daily Sports Report

Things I Do At Home by Matthew N.

Art is a form of love. Art is the ultimate gift. Art heals life. 
Robert Genn
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Creating art relieves stress, builds self-esteem and fills us with a sense of purpose, accomplishment and peace.  At SEEDs for Autism we understand the healing power of art and recognize the importance of having an outlet to express ourselves creatively during these difficult times. Encouraged by his family, Matthew N. shares his thoughts, his inspiration and his amazing artwork with our readers.
The artist at work
Today is about 2 months that we are dealing with the coronavirus situation. My mom wanted me to write about my activities. I had to stay inside and worry about our future. I spent a lot of time painting to relax. New York City is a place that had many cases of Covid 19. I painted New York City under the lantern to represent the symbol of Hope. The lanterns light up the dark sky. I got the idea from the movie “Tangled”. I hope that things will be better soon but I hear mixed results. Some people on TV said that it is getting better. Some people said that it is worse. Everything is still confusing to me.
Matthew poses with his completed painting
SEEDs for Autism is a non-profit organization that provides education and vocational training for young adults on the autism spectrum. Participants learn a variety of job skills, social skills and life skills in a structured environment focused on the arts. Our activities and programs encourage our students to step outside their comfort zones and grow.
Please visit our website to learn more about this life-changing program!

What I’ve Learned During the Break from SEEDs by Daniel N.

Hello, my name is Daniel and I’m going to be writing about what I’ve learned over the break.

I learned how to use Zoom, Duo, and Google calendar to get assignments. I learned Duo from my friend Kim so we could talk face to face. I learned Zoom from Justin, the Computer teacher at SEEDs and I learned Google calendar on my own.

I use Zoom to take martial arts fitness classes with Mrs. Lee and with Mr. Benton who is my teacher for Tai Kwon Do classes.  While it’s true that I can’t practice the practical aspects of Tai Kwon Do, such as self-defense, sparring, and board breaks, I can get practice in on my form and weapons.   

I use Google calendar to get informed about what’s going on at Seeds for Autism. 

I had my first zoom chat with Michele (Newsletter instructor), Francis and Brianna.   I was included in the Zoom meeting with my peers from Seeds.  I had to wait for recognition by the host of the meeting. I never knew how to navigate Zoom until I watched Justin’s educational   video (that was on the Google Calendar) on how to use the application for conferring with colleagues who might be on a business trip for example. Google calendar has helped me stay in the loop. 

I am staying active and connected during the outbreak of COViD 19 using online activities with Seeds and Tai Kwon Do with Mr. Benton and Mrs. Lee.  Missing seeing folks in person. Hope see everyone in 21 days. 

CRUSADERS For The Future (April update) by Chris M

Hey, guys. It’s been a while since COVID-19 started to change our lives, so I decided to share a new update on my project to lift things up for the rest of us. Here is your new Crusaders update for April 2020.

Recently, I have been doing some drawings for each section of my game proposal, such as Contents and Synopsis, during the break. Below is a piece of artwork for one of the titles that I made for my pitch.

This logo is meant for the Contents section for the latest version of the proposal. Each piece of concept art has been worked on at a slow pace. I hope all the work pays off.

I also found out about a production company located in Japan that provides artwork and illustrations for game development. I hope to contact them in the future to help out once I start putting my ideas together.

Overall, I’ve been finding ways to be productive during these hard times. Looking forward to coming back to SEEDS once all this is over. Miss you all.

Mister Rogers and Me

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When I was a small boy, I used to watch the old Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood series on PBS Kids because my Dad was working at a PBS station. When he first met the actor who played Mr. McFeeley, Mr. Newell invited my family to meet Mr. Rogers himself at his studio.

When we got to the office where Fred Rogers worked, I was so excited that I wanted to rush up and hug him, but I kind of tackled him into his sofa. During our visit, he told my Mom that she was very special to have a son like me and that she should be proud. Then we took our picture with Mister Rogers. That was a time when he was getting frail and then later on he passed away.

Since then, we became good friends with Mr. Newell and we’ve been visiting with him at times. I still respect Mister Rogers’ legacy and hope to keep up the good work in the future. Do you enjoy Mister Rogers’ special messages of kindness?

by Chris M.

What Does It Take To Be a Good Friend?

“Friends are the sunshine of life.” – John Hay

Friendships enrich our lives, make us happy and provide us with a sense of purpose and belonging. At SEEDs for Autism we understand that making friends can be especially difficult for those on the autism spectrum. Our multifaceted program helps participants develop important social skills which empower them to interact with their peers, connect with others and build friendships. We asked our participants to share their thoughts on what it takes to be a good friend.

BRIANNA
A good friend is friendly, kind, helpful, someone you can talk to, spend some time with, and makes you laugh!

NATHAN B.
It takes a lot to be a good friend. For starters you need to be kind and friendly. You also need to be selfless and also need to be loyal as well. The final thing you need to be a good friend is to be funny and make them happy. That is what it takes to be a good friend.

CHRIS M.
I believe that a good friend will always be there to support you in achieving your goals, whether it’s a family member or a best friend. And sometimes you will have to be a good friend in order to support other people you know. A bad friend, however, would offer bad advice or lie to people, only to make things worse. Overall, being a good friend to others would depend on you. If you know what’s right or wrong, just do it.

MICHAEL B.
What makes a good friend? It is a question that passes through our minds at multiple times throughout our journey in life. This question guides and shapes our interactions, relationships and the future of every person we meet on planet earth. As a result, I believe the three qualities that make up a good friend are compassion, empathy and a good understanding of interpersonal relationships. Overall, these three traits when displayed correctly in the appropriate manner convey to others that they have the skills needed to be not just be a good friend, but an outstanding friend to rely on at any given time.

DANIEL N.
Getting to know the other person better is very important for friendships to form and sometimes they take years. Listening to the other party is fuel to form friendships.Talk about what the other party is interested in and topics that are appropriate for the conversation like “What do you like to do for fun?” Listen when the other party is talking to you and talk when it is your turn. In conclusion, friendships are very fragile and they need to be maintained.

JUSTIN M.
How to be a good friend: 1) Introduce yourself. 2) Tell funny jokes. 3) Make them happy. 4) Help them with a puzzle. 5) Shake hands.

Personal Stories: What Is The Bravest Thing You’ve Ever Done?

“Courage doesn’t mean you don’t get afraid. Courage means you don’t let fear stop you.” – Bethany Hamilton

For those on the autism spectrum, advocating for ourselves, interacting with others and stepping outside of our comfort zone often takes a tremendous amount of courage. At SEEDs for Autism, we strive to empower our participants and help them develop the skills to face these challenges and GROW. Every day we celebrate with our participants as they persevere and demonstrate acts of courage. We asked them to share their personal stories of bravery and to let our audience know that not all superheroes wear capes. 

MATTHEW
On my first trip to Japan with my dad and brother, we were rushing to catch a subway train. While dad and I made it in, the doors would have shut for my brother if I didn’t reach out for him, even if it meant that the doors could crush my arm. This caused the doors to open and close again while my brother finally got inside the train. It didn’t even hurt my arm that much. I just couldn’t leave him behind at the station, so I tried doing what I could. My dad seemed proud for my quick thinking, as it helped us make the train in time.

CAMILLE
The bravest thing I have ever done was dealing with difficult people without having a meltdown and losing control of situations. I don’t listen to them so they won’t get me upset.

JESSE
The bravest thing I have ever done, was when I was really young maybe around 5 or 6 years old. It is hard for me to recall certain details but this story has been told by my family enough that it has stuck in my memory. My sister was scared of getting a shot so I cut through the line and I got my shot to show her it was nothing to fear. My mom was surprised by my actions. Some people in line were slightly annoyed but once they understood the event, they did not seem to mind as much.

BRIAN D.
Four years ago I asked for a first time date with Leanne. When I asked her for the date she said yes and I was so excited and felt brave about myself. Now we are so happy together and we watch movies and eat at restaurants and we talk to each other and have fun spending time together.

KERI
I went on a helicopter ride in Hawaii. It was a blast of fun. I was scared at first and terrified before I went on the helicopter then I did it and got rid of my fear.

Personal Stories: Who Do You Admire?

When we seek to discover the best in others, we somehow bring out the best in ourselves.
-William Arthur Ward


The people we admire inspire us to believe in ourselves, to reach further and strive to be our best. We asked SEEDs participants to write about the people they look up to and identify the qualities they have in common.

SYDNEY
The person I admire is Lady Godiva because she didn’t hesitate to challenge unfair taxes in the eleventh century and she did it by riding naked on a horse. We both like to challenge ourselves to be courageous and to not take no for an answer.

CAMILLE
I admire my friends Jesse and Nathan, because they have the same interests as me and play video games. They are so kind and friendly, and that’s how I am too.

JAKE M.
One of my favorite athletes of all time is Roger Federer. He is the most successful male tennis player of all time. His character is exemplary on and off the court. He is a hard worker and leaves everything on the court regardless of the final result. He also has his own charity called The Roger Federer Foundation.

I can relate to Roger in two ways. The first being, we both pride ourselves on giving back to the community. Like Federer, I too put 100% effort in everything I do. Athletes like Roger Federer don’t come around very often.

CHRISTIAN
I admire my grandfather John Caulfield because he was brave and I am also brave.

What Have You Done At Seeds That Makes You Feel Proud?

We were created for meaningful work, and one of life’s greatest pleasures is the satisfaction of a job well done.
-John C. Maxwell

At SEEDs for Autism, we create many opportunities for our participants to experience a sense of accomplishment, build self-esteem and achieve a feeling of satisfaction for a job well done. We asked our participants to share their thoughts on the things they’ve done at SEEDs that make them feel proud. 

JUSTIN M.
I made some earrings in jewelry at SEEDs that made me feel proud. It was very easy to do.

CONNOR
I have done and made so many things at Seeds, but to pick what makes me most proud is difficult. The things I make that I’m most proud of are stuff I make in the Wood Department. I love turning the wood, and Ed (instructor) says I’m very good at it.

DERRICK
In the Metal department I made metal ostriches with Lenny’s (instructor) help. It made me feel good because it took a good amount of time and effort finish the ostriches.  It made me feel proud enough to finish them.

CHRIS
What I’ve been doing at SEEDS was that I improved a lot on my abilities to adapt to different situations in each class. Like when someone in my class is having a bad moment, I would ask staff if I could take a break to avoid getting involved. Or when I helped my peers by showing them what I do in one of my classes. I have become patient with everybody at SEEDS and helped out at the front desk. I have also learned how to manage my anger by taking breaks. Overall, SEEDS helped me improve on my behavior and this makes me proud.

KYLE D.
Spa is my favorite department at Seeds. I’m good at making soap. It makes me feel proud.

JARED
Social Skills is my favorite department at Seeds. I’m good at listening. I’m good at communicating. It makes me feel proud.

KERI
Something I did at Seeds that made me feel proud was that I made a nice ceramic cactus soap dish and painted it well. It was nice and I felt good about it.

Struggling With Something New: What did you do to improve?

A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt

When met with new experiences, it is often a struggle to overcome obstacles and improve – but this is how we GROW! At SEEDs for Autism we encourage and empower our participants to face challenges and develop the inner strength to persist and keep trying. We asked some of our participants to write about a time when they struggled with something new – and what they did to improve. 

DANIEL N.
There was a time when I struggled with weight training so I worked hard to gain physical strength. I trained with lighter weights then as I got stronger I dialed up the resistance to build muscle in the back which are the most critical muscles for bench press. I won my weight division in both bench and dead lift.

NATHAN B
There was a time where I struggled at Fry’s which is where I work. When I first got hired at Fry’s I was very nervous and I had no I idea what to do really. I struggled in the beginning. I would bag the wrong things together, I would not do a very good job on carts by only doing a few at a time, and one time I accidentally hit a customers a car with one of the shopping carts. Let’s just say my early times at Fry’s were a struggle. But I didn’t give up and over time I got better and better at Fry’s to eventually thriving at Fry’s. That is how I struggled with something new and overcame that obstacle.

MICHAEL S
I struggled with math in High School. To improve I slowed down my answers. I worked out the problem first. Then I got better at math.

ISAIAH
I struggle sometimes when I work on something hard like moving heavy objects. Now when I lift heavy boxes or heavy packages I prove to be mature because I don’t use bad language and yelling and screaming.