info@starability.org 239.594.9007

We’re Here for You: Virtual Resources

Due to COVID-19, all in-person STARability Foundation programming is currently suspended through May 1. But during this time of in-person program suspension, we want to continue to provide engaging activities to our participants and their families the best we can. We’re here for you.

If you have any questions for us during this time, please don’t hesitate to call us. Our staff remain available Monday through Friday at 239.594.9007.

COVID-19 Resources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Florida Department of Health

Collier County updates; Collier County Health Department updates

City of Naples updates

Handwashing, from the CDC

Handwashing, for kids, from the Florida Department of Health

STARability Program Alternatives

Interactive offerings:

Along with some treasured community partners, we bring you these group interactive offerings through the video conference program Zoom:

  • BINGO GAMES: Join us on Mondays at 10 a.m.! To sign up each week, please email madison@starability.org.
  • IMPROV SESSIONS: Join us and Craig Price of The Naples Players on Mondays at 12:30 p.m.! To sign up each week, please email madison@starability.org.
  • PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBIT: Join us on Mondays at 5 p.m. to talk about the progress on your project! (Complete your project from the pre-recorded video in the section below.) To sign up each week, please email madison@starability.org
  • GARDEN CLUB: Join us on Tuesdays at 2:30 p.m. to talk about the progress on your project! (Complete your project from the pre-recorded video in the section below.) To sign up each week, please email madison@starability.org
  • COMPUTER CLASS: Join us on Wednesdays at 3:30 p.m.! To sign up and receive each week’s project, please email susan@starability.org.
  • YOGA SESSIONS: Join us and Salima Smith of House of Gaia and BKS Yoga Studio on Fridays at 2 p.m.! To sign up each week, please email madison@starability.org.
  • Watch here for a video from Marketing Assistant Matthew Walzer on how to accept a future Zoom session on your computer (or get written instructions here), and here for a video from Trailblazer Academy Instructor Jason Blount on how to see everyone in gallery view during each session.

Personalized, follow-along videos:

More:

  • STAR participants can also join a hidden, private Facebook group, STAR Connect, to socialize and share with one another from home. The group is by invitation only, so if your participant would like to join, please email Susan at susan@starability.org or Matthew at marketing@starability.org with his or her Facebook handle!

Resources We’ve Shared

  • On March 21, a celebration of World Down Syndrome Day.
  • A way to visit some of the world’s incredible museums and landmarks—virtually!
  • Gentle yoga for individuals with disabilities.
  • Access to fun at-home arts and crafts ideas like this one from Michaels, which is sharing step-by-step videos of projects every Wednesday at 1 p.m. ET on their Facebook page.
  • Out-of-this-world fun STEM-related videos from the IMAG History & Science Center (formerly the Imaginarium), with new postings each day.
  • A step-by-step recipe for Avocado Toast from our partners at First Watch.
  • This helpful NPR story from Morning Edition that discusses how to talk to individuals with autism about COVID-19.
  • Nature Near You—a series of easy and fun experiments that can be done right in your backyard, lessons on biodiversity and our local ecosystems, and DIY arts and crafts—from our friends at Sanibel Sea School.
  • On March 25, a celebration of National Cerebral Palsy Awareness Day.
  • Something pure fun: Delish’s free weekday cooking classes, held on Instagram Live at 1 p.m.
  • An uplifting and heartfelt message and song from Trailblazer Academy Instructor Jason Blount.
  • The fun Typing Club website enjoyed by many of our participants! (For those who want to continue your previous lessons done through STARability, email Susan at susan@starability.org for your password!)
  • Apps that teach you to play the piano or drums right from your smartphone or tablet. 
  • From our partners at Naples Botanical Garden, an ever-growing list of ways to stay connected to nature while at home. Their #StayPlanted campaign includes nature-based crafts, gardening activities and recipes.
  • Florida Gulf Coast University’s Wings of Hope program for nature enthusiasts of all ages. The “I Spy Nature at My Home Habitat” activity packet has everything you need to have fun and stay connected to the outdoors while at home.
  • For those looking for a good story to let their imagination free, a wide range of free stories available for a variety of reading levels courtesy of Audible.
  • Two great resources to teach or reinforce the important habit of handwashing: Here and here.
  • From Learn in Color, 75 educational and entertaining activities ranging from movie options and arts and crafts to cooking ideas and board games.
  • Calm, a free meditation app with many great relaxation and stress relief meditation exercises. In addition to accessing the content via a free account on the app, Calm also has resources available directly online. Check them out here: Calm website resources
  • Calm Kids website resources
  • Apple App Store
  • Google Play Store
  • Online dance classes from Miss Cammie, our Jazz Funk Class instructor! Stay active, get moving and have fun while staying safely at home. The Hip-Hop A/B video is the next best thing to Jazz Funk Class!
  • Information and resources directly from Autism Speaks.
  • For our Disney World lovers, Classic Disney attractions you can enjoy virtually! (And, a tip: If you don’t see your favorite ride at the link above, simply search for it on YouTube! For example, search “buzz lightyear space ranger spin.”)
  • virtual showcase of the Naples Downtown Art Show, which is presented by our vocational partner Naples Art and was originally scheduled to take place this weekend.
  • Live stream videos of jellyfish, sharks, penguins, sunset and more from the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California.
  • Free online lessons in geography, biology, the United States Constitution and more via Specialneedsforspecialkids.net.
  • Free virtual field trips to museums, at-home science experiments, entertaining stories and more, with content for all levels of learning, from Scholastic.
  • Various links with deep discounts, freebies and tips to help you get the most out of being at home from The Krazy Coupon Lady.
  • The “Support Individuals with Additional Needs as You Support Your Local Businesses” campaign from our friends at Additional Needs Inc. The thoughtful effort is focused on supporting local restaurants during this difficult time while also encouraging local artists with additional needs. Contest sponsors will buy gift cards to local restaurants, which in turn will be raffled off to artists with additional needs who enter the contest. We hope our STAR artists will enter and register as artists here!
  • From Trailblazer Academy Instructor Francesca MacAlister, a fun video on how to groom a horse! We hope our Trailblazers will enjoy and practice upon their return to program and one of their favorite vocational sites, Naples Therapeutic Riding Center.
  • On April 2, a celebration of World Autism Awareness Day and World Autism Awareness Month.
  • The resource of the ABLEnow account, which in this uncertain time can help offer more financial freedom to better handle cost-of-living expenses if you or your loved ones receive SSI benefits and/or Medicaid.
  • To help explain to our loved ones the complex virus of COVID-19, this video created by UM-NSU CARD (University of Miami-Nova Southeastern University Center for Autism & Related Disabilities) that discusses symptoms, proper hygiene practices, social distancing and more. 
  • collection of recipes and cooking demonstrations that can be easily prepared at home using healthy, fresh ingredients, from our friends at the Blue Zones Project. “Plant slant” tacos and risotto and bruschetta, oh my!
  • Daily #KeepLearningAlive live-stream lessons from Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens showing off some of their beautiful residents, like this one that gave viewers an inside look at the zoo’s pride of lions, including the cubs! Check the zoo’s Facebook page daily at 9:15 a.m. for more videos.
  • The Pocket Occupational Therapist, from pediatric occupational therapist Cara Koscinski, a mother to sons with autism and sensory processing disorder and a professor at the University of St. Augustine. The website has made some of its resources—such as fine motor activities—free during this time of routine disruption and stress to support caregivers and therapists. You can find more of these tips through The Pocket OT’s Facebook page, including videos on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday evenings!
  • The new Disney Magic Moments website, focused on bringing the magic to families and fans while at home through a growing list of free content from across the Disney catalog, including Star Wars, Marvel, Pixar, Disney Animation, as well as virtual parades and attractions.
  • A list of all of the Broadway performances available to stream on Netflix, Amazon Prime and Broadway HD, from Broadway Direct. 
  • The first of our Tuesday STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics) education content: A Smile and Learn video lesson on the three states of matter and the differences of each, and another from NASCAR on how they work together to power a race car! 
  • A Zoom invitation to an April 11 virtual party at Club 1111, an incredible inclusive nightclub for people with disabilities that features multiple dance floors, a mocktail lounge and more. STARability Program Coordinator Susan França and Administrative Assistant Hannah Kandel traveled to Baltimore last August to visit Club 1111 and gain inspiration and had a wonderful time! 
  • Free online instruction from fitness favorite Orange Theory in the form of online exercises posted every day.
  • A list from Apple of 30 fun activities that you can do easily on your iPhone or iPad with apps that you most likely already have. Activities range from collages to interactive nature walks, photography lessons and more.
  • A video recipe of blistered corn tacos from our friends at Blue Zones Project.
  • Live webcams of manatees, otters and sharks from Mote Marine Lab Center for Tropical Research in Sarasota! Each of these wonderful creatures also has scheduled presentations and activities you can take part in virtually. Webcams and presentation times are listed on each animal’s specific page.
  • Free temporary online library cards for Collier County residents from Collier County Public Library, providing access to thousands of books, magazines, as well as movies! Registration here is easy and free. Temporary online library cards expire July 1. If you already have a library card, simply sign in for access. 
  • Free streaming of opera performances 7 days a week from The Metropolitan Opera in New York. Each day, a different encore presentation from the company’s Live in HD series is made available on the Met website, with each performance available for a period of 23 hours, from 7:30 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. the following day. 
  • A video from Smile and Learn in which we explore our exciting solar system.
  • Some tips on how best to keep our smartphones and other devices clean and protect ourselves from germs, as we use them more than ever to stay connected.
  • A Zoom group stress management class hosted by our friends at Special Olympics Florida – Collier County. Psychologist and Clinical Director Dr. Maribel Del Rio-Roberts led the session, which included stress management practices, coping techniques and a Q&A. Keep an eye out for further such sessions from Special Olympics here!
  • In celebration of Autism Awareness Month, an April sale on some of the apps created by Pyramid Educational Consultants, the maker of the wonderful six-phase PECS (Picture Exchange Communication System). This is a great time to explore these apps, which include digital PECS books as well as additional communication, encouragement and reinforcement tools.
  • Some great ideas from Southern Living to help you make the most fun of your time outside. We’re particularly excited about the idea of setting up our own backyard bocce, a favorite among some of our participants who take part through Special Olympics!
  • This video recipe for Tomato Bruschetta from our friends at Blue Zones Project and their “Plant Slant Kitchen,” for a healthy way to enjoy yourself, learn something new and simply de-stress.
  • Delicious smoothie recipes from Good Housekeeping to further inspire us to get into the kitchen!
  • From our friends at Special Olympics Florida, a way to continue with the Fit 5 Challenge! They are “going pro” with Fit 5 Pro, a video series of live workouts and daily fitness challenges from Olympic, Paralympic and professional athletes from around Florida and the world. To follow along on this new 30-day journey, be sure to join the #SOFLFit5 Facebook group!
  • As part of our #STEAMTuesday education content, a video from Smile and Learn that explains what makes up all of the layers of the earth, collectively known as the Geosphere.
  • In celebration of Earth Day, an immersive and interactive virtual tour of five unique National Parks from across the United States.
  • From Apple, access to numerous free books through the Books app on your iPhone, iPad or Mac. Read more here, and look for a collection called “Free books for everyone, from kids to adults.”
  • The Steps for Kindness event, an Autism Speaks movement taking place at 1 p.m. today with the goal of taking 5,400 steps by yourself or as a team to celebrate acceptance for 1 in 54 U.S. children with autism.
  • Register here for the free April 30 workshop webinar “The Transition to Adulthood for Those with Autism” from Dr. Kerry Magro, an award-winning professional speaker, best-selling author and autism consultant to the HBO series “Mrs. Fletcher.” Dr. Magro was diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified, a form of autism, at age 4. 
  • This delicious and simple recipe for broccoli with sauteed garlic and lemon juice from Blue Zones Project. Enjoy it by itself, or as a side dish with your favorite protein! 
  • Zoom webinars from University of Florida’s Polk Gardening, offering insights on great new ways to enjoy healthy eating.
  • Worksheets from LONG Creations as a way to stay creative and process what we all are going through at this moment in time.
  • As part of our #STEAMatHome education content, a video that gives STARs an up-close-and-personal look at the sun, no sunglasses required!
  • The Zoom invitation from our friends at Club 1111, whose dance party returns May 9 from 6-8 p.m.! That means back-to-back virtual parties, starting with the STARability Cinco de Mayo Fiesta on May 8! 
  • Disney’s Happily Ever After Fireworks Show, now available at any time from the comfort of your home! Watch the sky light up from the best seat in the Magic Kingdom and enjoy classic Disney music as Cinderella’s Castle becomes a magical canvas of storytelling.
  • Reminders for proper handwashing, herehere and here.
  • From our Blue Zones friends at Ciclovia Immokalee, eight really fun scavenger hunt challenges on their Facebook page.
  • Not one but two videos of exercises you can practice right at home to improve the strength, range of motion and fine-motor dexterity in your hands. 
  • From the American Heart Association, 25 fun and creative ways to get moving at home.
  • This video recipe for Cauliflower Fried Rice from our friends at Blue Zones Project and their “Plant Slant Kitchen,” for a healthy way to enjoy yourself, learn something new and simply de-stress. Great ingredients make for a fun spin on a classic dish! 
  • This recipe for zucchini pesto from Blue Zones Project. Delicious with pasta, on garlic toast and more!
  • A link from Apple to all the tools available to assist you with seeing, hearing and interacting with your iPhone, iPad or Mac; as well as how-to videos on Apple’s accessibility features.
  • This list from Autism Housing Network of fun, productive things for adults and their families to do while staying home. 
  • From our vocational partners at Conservancy of Southwest Florida, an online learning experience to help you stay connected with nature, our ecosystem and the environment.
  • Fun at-home activities from The Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum on Sanibel Island. 
  • This video for you, our STARability families, on how to support your role as a caregiver.
  • From our friends at Blue Zones Project – Southwest Florida, three delicious and creative recipes great for breakfast or a sweet and healthy snack: chia blueberry muffins#PlantSlant banana bread, and a quinoa breakfast bowl.
  • Thanks to a Disneyland Parks cast member who wanted to bring back the magic of the classic Wonderful World of Disney parade, a recreation of the iconic Disney celebration featuring him and over 160 current and former Disneyland cast members.
  • In celebration of International Museum Day, a virtual tour of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C.
  • A #STEAMatHome science lesson from TED on the Chemistry of Cookies!
  • The super fun Flamingo Amigo live cam from Everglades Wonder Gardens.