Hunter’s Presentation at SEEDs for Autism

Developing social skills is an important area of focus at SEEDs for Autism and we incorporate practicing these skills into every aspect of our program. Creating power point presentations is a creative way for our participants to build confidence, improve communication skills and inspire others. In this presentation, Hunter speaks to a roomful of his peers on the topic of “Manners”.
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Animals of Africa

People on the autism spectrum often exhibit an intense focus on a particular area of interest. These affections may change over time, yet the level of enthusiasm remains the same. At SEEDs for Autism, we recognize that these passionate hobbies offer a level of comfort and stability to these unique individuals. From there, we can introduce new ideas and challenges to help our participants GROW. Daniel loves the animals of Africa, and during the creation of this blog post, he confidently stepped outside of his comfort zone. Apart from performing the technical skills of online research, typing, uploading images, adding categories and finding appropriate tags, Daniel opened his mind and created poems about his favorite animals.

Darkest Hour Movie Review

By Jake M.

During winter break my family and I saw the movie Darkest Hour (2017). The star of the film, Gary Oldman portrays British Prime Minister Winston Churchill. The film highlights key decisions Churchill must make, such as whether to go to war with Nazi Germany or negotiate, plus his handling of Dunkirk. The movie also focuses in on Churchill’s personality giving the audience a detailed look of who Churchill was outside of politics. It’s a history buff’s galore.

Churchill came into power during a tumultuous time with leaders like Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler carrying out ethnic genocide and European occupation. The prior Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s foreign policy of appeasement was failing and Winston Churchill was tasked with convincing parliament and the British citizens that a military campaign was the only way to win against European fascists. He also had to conduct a well organized rescue operation at Dunkirk.

Gary Oldman, the highly revered actor, is a household name with a vast variety of roles. Millennials know him best for his roles as Sirius Black in the Harry Potter Series and as Detective Gordon in the Dark Knight Trilogy. He also played a role in the 2014 film Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, directed by Matt Reeves. Older fans might recognize him from iconic 1990s films. Roles include: Lee Harvey Oswald in JFK (1991), title character in Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) and Ivan Korshunov in Air Force One (1997). Oldman’s résumé speaks for itself and his role as Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour won him the academy award for best actor.

Darkest Hour offers something different for everyone. If you’re a history enthusiast you’ll definitely feel right at home and if you are a fan of Gary Oldman you won’t be disappointed. My biggest takeaway was the beautifully executed portrayal of Churchill and the costume design. I’d give the movie 10 stars.

Jewelry-Making Workshop with Gloria and Justin

At SEEDs for Autism, our ongoing series of workshops provide new opportunities to empower our participants and encourage them to GROW. These talented young adults gain confidence interacting with the community as they assist our staff during these educational and inspirational events!

Intro to Jewelry Making: Mixed Metal Earrings

The Intro to Jewelry Making class on Saturday was a great success! By providing step-by-step instructions and live demonstrations, Gloria (instructor) and Justin M. taught workshop attendees how to create a beautiful pair of mixed metal earrings!

Workshop attendees pay close attention as Justin and Gloria work together to demonstrate each step

Justin SHINES as Gloria’s star pupil in the Jewelry department at SEEDs. Due to his high quality work, attention to detail and delicate touch, Justin is the only participant entrusted to work with more expensive materials such as silver. This workshop at SEEDs for Autism gave Justin the opportunity to take a leadership role and share his talents and skills with the community!

Justin provides one on one instruction

 

Justin demonstrates how to use the drill

 

Justin supervises while his student drills

SCENES FROM THE EVENT

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If you would like to learn more about this life-changing program please visit our website

seedsforautism.org

Featured Artist: Interview with Camille

Animals and Rainbows by Camille
“The drawing is really cool because it’s vibrant, creative, and cute.”  Brianna

Developing social skills is an important area of focus at SEEDs for Autism. One of the creative, yet practical ways we practice these skills is by conducting interviews. Participants make eye contact, utilize active listening and focus on the speaker to gain information. Brianna put these skills into ACTION by interviewing one of her peers about her love of drawing.

INTERVIEW WITH CAMILLE:

Question: What are your favorite things to draw?
Answer: Nature, landscapes, travels, and animals.
Question: How long have you been drawing?
Answer: I started when I was little.
Question: How did you learn to draw so well?
Answer: By looking at pictures, illustrations, cartoons and different shapes or something to get ideas.
Question: Why do you like drawing?
Answer: Because it’s fun, relaxing, it makes me happy, and it’s my hobby!

Interviewer: Brianna

Self Portrait by Camille
“I like this drawing because it’s pretty abstract.” Brianna

 

Empowering Families at SEEDs for Autism

Jennifer Espinoza, BCBA/LBA working with families at SEEDs for Autism

SEEDs for Autism is proud to be one of the leading Phoenix resources for autism support, information and connection. We offer monthly educational lectures for parents/guardians of adults on the autism spectrum to learn more about topics related to autism. 

February’s Educational Lecture & Workshop: Using Positive Behavior Support Strategies to Increase Your Adult/Young Adult’s Motivation

Jennifer Espinoza, BCBA/LBA worked with a group of parents/guardians for a unique and educational experience at SEEDs for Autism. During the lecture, Jennifer provided valuable insights and demonstrated useful tips on how to use positive behavior support strategies to increase their child’s motivation. These research-based methods are empowering for those on the autism spectrum: providing choices which result in a greater sense of independence and engagement.

Afterwards, Jennifer spent time with each family as they worked together on an art project: creating a family banner. This provided an opportunity for parents/guardians to practice these behavioral support strategies in a real-life situation.


Participants at SEEDs for Autism Share Their Thoughts

My experience at the SEEDs workshop was a really great one! I got to work on this really cool project which was a custom family banner with hearts that had all our family members on it, decorated with stamps and other add-ons. It was a little difficult at first, but as soon as me, my mom and sister got working hard together on it, we got the hang of it, and I started to enjoy the project even more! The banner turned out awesome in the end! I liked it!   -Brianna

David and his parents

I created a red and purple  family banner that has our family’s name on it. My red and purple family banner also has the names of my twin nieces. I had to cut 3 hearts and pinned 2 of the hearts but sewed the 3rd to the banner. I also had to sew the top of the banner around the wood dowel. My family helped me create the family banner by helping me sew the hearts and the top onto the banner around the wood dowel.

-David

 

While parents/guardians attended the lecture, their loved ones participated in an engaging session of Improv  with their peers led by SEEDs instructor, Amy.

I had fun. I pretended to drink hot cocoa. I was a tree and played catch with an invisible ball. Then I made a banner with my mom. I used scissors to cut out hearts. -Daniel Ch.

Daniel and his mom

SEEDs for Autism exists to serve our local Phoenix autism community. These monthly educational lectures are intended for parents and guardians in our autism community and are an opportunity for us to help provide resources and education.

If you would like to learn more about this life-changing program, please visit our website:

seedsforautism.org

Jon’s Favorite Artist: Charles Thomson

Jon poses with his own artwork

At SEEDs for Autism, we recognize art as a powerful form of self-expression and we cultivate an environment where our participants can explore their talents and GROW.  Creating art reduces stress, develops fine motor skills and encourages personal growth. Through art, we can explore and interpret the world around us. It is a creative and meaningful way to engage and connect with others.

Jon has recently discovered his passion for art, finding his creative voice exploring shapes, line and color with pencils, colored markers and a growing collection of sketchbooks. Jon’s newfound interest in art led him to discover artist Charles Thomson. The work of Mr. Thomson really resonated with Jon. He found many of the artist’s paintings online and was inspired to share his thoughts on the pieces that inspired him. [Ed.]

Image result for charles thomson artist

Top Hat by Charles Thomson

This painting in my opinion is the coolest thing I have ever seen! The amount of bright colors and dark colors work so well together. The different colors in the background leads your eyes to the figure in this painting. And the color choices work so well together, from the bright orange, green and pink in the center of the figure to the dark reds, browns, and grays of the background. It is a work of art that made me want to study this with my eyes and mind.

 

Image result for Everyone Called Smith in the Barnet Phone Book 1998–1999 by Charles Thomson

Everyone Called Smith in the Barnet Phone Book 1998–1999 by Charles Thomson

What I love about this is that it looks like a hand-cut collage and it took me a while to figure out it wasn’t. It was a painting made by the hands of a human being. I was surprised to see such a detailed oil painting because it looks so real and tricked my mind into thinking it wasn’t a painting. The details in the ‘cutouts’ were amazing to me from the amount of simple details with the difficult oils that made it look so real and that is the main reason why I like this painting.