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

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Exploring Poetry at SEEDs for Autism

At SEEDs for Autism, writing poetry encourages creativity and self-expression. Poetry stirs the imagination and helps us grow emotionally and intellectually as we explore our thoughts and feelings in a symbolic way. It is an excellent practice for strengthening writings skills, cultivating a strong vocabulary and learning to think outside the box.

Here, participants at SEEDs created poetry inspired by their favorite colors.

MB/ed.

 

Pizza Cutters and the Art of Woodworking

 

Daniel takes pride in his work in the Wood Department at SEEDs

There is something truly wonderful about a unique, hand-crafted object. The feeling you get when you create – investing your time, creativity, hard work and dedication to transform basic materials into a thing of beauty is a life-changing experience. Whether it is a lump of clay, a ball of yarn, or a piece of wood… with you, clay becomes ceramics, fiber and yarn becomes a scarf… and a hunk of wood becomes a pizza cutter.. as unique and individual as the artist who created it.

A one of a kind pizza cutter

 

Close up of Daniel’s craftsmanship

 

 

Ceramics

Hello, my name is Jose and I am going to write an article about my experience in the ceramics department. I work in the ceramics department with Ms. Ann Richards. She is very professional, but loving and caring person. I enjoy working with her. In Ceramics, I have learned how to make a bunch of items and make them fast. Before I learned how to make objects correctly, I was not very good. The first time I tried it, I would just slap the paint on. Ann did not like that! In order to grow, Ann told me to watch how Alex did it. Then I got better watching a pro at work. Alex really paid attention to his work. He would really go in and get every single divot, working inside and out from the center all the way to the outside. Because I am now a skilled ceramics student, I know how much paint to put on. It varies how many coats of paint I use and I also know about how gentle to stroke with the brush. Ms. Ann showed me about Painting with very light strokes to get the right quality of work.These are the many hard skills I have learned in ceramics. We make round flowers and birds and butterflies. Recently as in, last Thursday, I moved up to 3d objects. Mushrooms, for example. My experience in ceramics has taught me how to be a more gentle and attentive artist. I took 3d design in high school but did poorly every semester. Doing work in this dept. Has brought back to me a new sense of strength and purpose because I stunk at ceramics in high school but now I own it. Ceramics makes me feel good. When I see the finished product, I feel proud of myself. I like how it makes me feel when someone buys my product. Knowing, that someone is going to enjoy it later on gives me satisfaction because I know all my hard work went into someone’s happiness.

Golfing

One good reason I like golf is because it’s a sport that I can focus with my mind to make the ball go into the hole. I also had played golf in high school and was a part of the team and was the leader. I made great action from start to finish and I felt better than Tiger Woods.

But now I take golf as a good sport to focus on as a hobby. I still like to try out mini golf places because I can practice putting to learn skills for when I play real golf.

I still like golf even though it has been a long time for that. I had not practiced but still come out good for hitting the ball for long distance

I don’t have a problem struggling with golf, but I still want to make it as the icon.    

by Roberto

SEEDs for Autism Student Profile – Daniel

Daniel shares his experience in the wood department with an introduction to the process and his instructor, as well as the products he creates and the impact it has on his self esteem and job preparedness.

SEEDS provides education and vocational training for all functional levels of autism as well as providing resources for those on the autistic spectrum. We are proud to be one of the leading Phoenix resources for autism and our programs let those with autism spectrum disorders explore the possibilities and discover new skills in a structured environment.

My Experience in the Weaving Department

At SEEDs for Autism, participants work in a variety of departments – learning the skills necessary to create a multitude of beautiful, high-quality home and garden products. But the learning process does not end there. Daniel discovered that learning how to weave made him realize that he can accomplish anything he sets his mind to. (Ed.)

Daniel working with a nifty knitter

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.