Trying New Things

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

At SEEDs for Autism we empower our participants to step outside of their comfort zones and GROW! Whether it’s learning a new skill, meeting new people or engaging in new experiences – trying new things takes courage. We asked our participants to share their experiences about a time when they did something they were afraid to try and how they felt afterwards. 

JESSICA
The time I went on the Terror Tower ride at California Adventures. I hate falling rides and they scare me so bad and it was also a scary ride as well. But my parents convinced me and I did. Falling was so scary but I did it. Then I went again and now I love it. So my lesson to the world is try something once and if you don’t like it you don’t have to do it again. But if you do, do it.

SONJA
The first time I rode the bus I was not looking forward to it. I wanted to stay home in bed and not go anywhere. Then my dad came with me and after we stepped off the bus I felt like I could breathe again and since then I’ve been taking the bus to my dad’s work.

ERIK
At least 25 years ago, my parents persuaded me to attempt to ride a bicycle for the first time. Naturally, I was nervous and very reluctant to try. I did not get very far on my first attempt. I fell down and got scraped quite a bit. I still get some nasty bruises even today. Over the years, I got better and better at riding my own bike.

MICHAEL S.
I was afraid to take an airplane to Los Angeles. But I did it. It wasn’t that bad because there were two girls on the plane. I’m not afraid of airplanes anymore.

DUSTIN
I was afraid to come to SEEDs but now I am happy to be here.

DANIEL N.
I was afraid to forge metal at SEEDs but I did it anyway and I felt the emotion of pride.

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Comics, Cartoons and Stop-Motion Animation

Last month, our Comics, Cartoons and Stop-Motion Animation workshop provided a wonderful opportunity for adults on the autism spectrum to express themselves creatively, explore their talents and practice social skills together. Sharing this popular area of interest with others created a positive, encouraging environment where participants could engage with their peers, build friendships and GROW! We asked some of the attendees to share their experiences with us. 

BRANDON (Assistant Media Lab Instructor, former SEEDs participant)
Instructing at a community event does raise the bar when you are learning to be a teacher. Given that I was teaching stop motion animation at our Comics & Cartoons Workshop, it was quite a surprise to see participants take part in the class. Seeing seventeen guests coming to the event and feeling excited about animating sure was a challenge as most were not familiar with the medium.

It was an honor having Scott Pfister (Media Lab Instructor) aboard and a big help with Jake and Ethan.  In my experience with the pair, Ethan is quite a tech wizard and Jake has the potential to become a director. Our crew was wonderful given that we were sparking creative fires for the visitors of our workshop.  That itself was a success, and that the individuals that joined us had a hand at making a short video with the figures that were used for the set portion. The intent was that they were to have fun and learn something new, itself being quite an accomplishment. Overall, the event was successful and I hope to do more teaching on the medium.

JAKE M. (Workshop Co-Facilitator and SEEDs participant)
On Saturday February 16th I co-led the Stop-Motion Animation Workshop event at Seeds for Autism. I taught the participants how to build a set for stop motion-animation. Other instructors included Brandon, Ethan, and the Seeds Video Lab Instructor Scott. In addition to set building, participants got hands on experience with handling lego characters and moving them through a sequence in order to create a movie. Students also got to see a demonstration of the editing process. Being a leader felt good because I got to show people an interesting movie making skill which is also an art form.

CHRIS M.
I went to the Comics, Cartoons and Stop-Motion Animation Workshop on Saturday, the 19th of February. In the Comics section, I helped show my group how to tell a story in comic strip form. Then we made our own comic strips. I recreated a scene from the new HellBoy movie that is coming soon. Next, in the Cartoons section, we did paintings of pop art sound effects. My painting was a lightning bolt with the words “Thunder Strike”.

And finally, in the Stop-Motion section, we learned how to make animations using toys and puppets. I was helping Brandon the instructor with doing an animated short with LEGOs while everyone else was learning from the videos. The workshop overall was pretty neat and I look forward to what they’ll come up with in the next workshop.

JEFF
I was at the Comics workshop. I participated in all three events: comic strips, pop art and stop motion animation. I especially enjoyed the beautifully done “Mer-Mom” short shown as an example. All together I’d say this was a pretty educating experience. I can’t say what I learned in words but doing it helped me, let’s say, flow with it.

 

 

JOEL
I went to the Comics, Cartoons and Animation workshop. I drew backgrounds and made stories with cartoon characters. I made a painting that said POW! I made LEGO animation. I had fun.

SONJA
Last month I attended a Seeds for Autism workshop that was about the art of making comics, cartoons and stop motion. I started with how to create a comic strip and how to set up a scene adding in the characters you want to use and how to make a smooth transition from panel to panel. The next class was a painting class. We were painting the sound effects that writers in comics used to emphasize the weight of the situation to get the reader more attached to the characters they love. Finally there was the stop motion class where I learned how to manipulate the model to get the exact shot you want and how it takes patience, time and effort to make your stop motion film the way the creator intended it to be. The classes were really fun and I enjoyed myself a lot. I hope to do more workshops in the future.

Team Building Clinics at SEEDS for Autism

At SEEDs for Autism, our mission is to provide opportunities for those on the autism spectrum to engage with the community, develop job skills and reach their goals of finding employment! To help cultivate these important relationships and connections, SEEDs is now offering team building clinics for corporations, local businesses and the general public. Our team building clinics provide autism awareness education and engage dialog to discuss challenges and potential employment opportunities for our autism population. Built into these inspirational and educational clinics are mindfulness and collaboration with problem solving activities and creative projects.

Last month, we held our first Healthy Balance and Stress Management Workshop for the Life Care Center of Scottsdale. This team building clinic was co-facilitated by SEEDs participants Jake and Keri who were asked to share their experiences with us.

JAKE
On January 11th I helped lead a corporate workshop at Seeds for Autism. Corporate workshops are going to be a new feature for Seeds this year. The purpose of these workshops will be establishing team building. Friday’s workshop included activities led by Seeds staff that included yoga, tea tasting, figuring out how to keep a good state of mind, and making therapeutic zen packs. I co-led a student led tour of the facility and provided a student testimony. I think these workshops will be great for companies and corporations to get a better understanding of adults on the Autism Spectrum and how to effectively communicate with those individuals in a work environment.

KERI
Last month at Seeds we had a Find Your Corporate Zen Workshop for the Life Care Center of Scottsdale. We tasted three types of tea that we make at Seeds. Also, we did chair yoga and made a therapeutic Zen Pack. I helped with sewing. Then we had lunch from Mad Greens.  I was a little anxious at the beginning, then not so anxious at the end. I’m looking forward to being part of more corporate events.

 

“Such an amazing experience to learn and participate in. It makes me want to come be a part of the classes and gives me a new perspective on how to approach my patients with patience.”
Testimonial from Workshop Participant

The team LOVED their experience and has talked about how the insights gained from the session will help them in their approach with not only their patients, but also team-mates. They also talked about how amazing the campus is as well as your team. They were so impressed with it!

Victoria L. Furst,
Executive Director
Life Care Center of Scottsdale

All workshops include autism awareness, a facility tour, refreshments and a “make and take” project. If you are interested in booking a Find Your Corporate Zen Workshop for your team, co-workers, family or friends please contact admin@seedsforautism.org

My Experience Working with Mr. Ed

Hello my name is Daniel and I’m writing about my experience working with Mr.Ed in the Wood Department. He has taught me about using power tools in a responsible manner and being safe around the bandsaw. I learned how to cut wood to the correct length which is very important when making  cutting boards for customers who might buy them from Seeds. It makes me feel pride when someone buys something I made. In conclusion the Wood Department is one of  my favorite departments at Seeds.

Feathered Friends: A SIDE by SIDE Community Workshop at SEEDs for Autism

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. We hope you will join us this Saturday to explore your creativity, make new friends and be part of this life-changing experience!

Click HERE to purchase tickets and reserve your spot today!

 

 

My Experience in the Weaving Department by Daniel N.

Hello my name is Daniel and I’m going to be writing about my experience in the Weaving Department. My instructor’s name is Bailey and she has taught me how to work with the nifty knitters to make scarfs and headbands. We make towels using a loom. The products the Weaving dept produces are made of fibers woven together. We learn lessons on how to weave the fabric together to make products that serve a useful function in the house.  The towels could be used for washing your hands or for decoration on the wall. Scarfs prevent you from getting cold and they are an attractive fashion accessory.

It was initially very hard to learn weaving, but I persisted at it and it became easier with time. Learning the skill of weaving has shown me that if you set your mind to something you can do it .

I felt proud when I learned a difficult skill.