Connections Daily Lessons

Activity 1

Taking care of your mental health is just as important as taking care of you physical health.  Watch the video below and try at least three of the stress reduction techniques.

Activity 2

Check your email after 9am.  Did you get a Zoom invite for today at noon?  If not, call your case manager or advocate immediately to get it.  Please do your best to participate at noon today!

Now that you are in the Zoom room, how do you interact?

First, a very important rule:  As always, student privacy is very important.  There is no recording allowed during the Zoom interactions.  The school does not record these sessions, and you should not either!  If you cannot attend a Zoom class/meeting at the regular time, let the teacher know and we will have alternative formats for you.

Muting Yourself in Zoom.

  • If you do not want to be heard, but want to still be in a Zoom meeting, you can join, and  click the Microphone in the Zoom action bar! (bottom on computer, top in mobile devices). The microphone should now show a red slash through it

No Video in Zoom

  • To Join with no Video: (no camera)
    • Go ahead and click your invite to the meeting
    • A window will popup that gives 2  options. Click the “Join Without Video” option.
    • You will enter the room with no video showing
    • You can also click the video camera to stop video.  It should now show a red slash through it.

How to Chat:

  • Once you are in the meeting, you will see the Chat button in the action bar 
  • Click on the Chat button.  A sidebar will open.
    • You can click who you are sending a message to: Everyone, or a specific person in the meeting, at the bottom of that white sidebar
    • Once you have chosen who you are sending a message to, click on the “type message here” and type your message.
  • You can close the chat area by again clicking the chat icon in the main room page.  It will keep the chat until the meeting is over. You don’t have to keep the window open if you don’t want to.

Share Screen

  • Click the share screen in the action bar.
  • A page will pop up with 3 tabs:  
    • BASIC: whiteboard, browser tabs, computer screen
    • Advanced:  ……….TBD
    • Files : here you can select to share things from google drive, dropbox, etc.
  • Please remember this is still school, so be sure what you are sharing is appropriate!

Activity 3


Today we’re making GRILLED CHEESE!!

Watch the video and follow the steps in the link above. Remember SAFETY FIRST!! If you’re uncertain of steps or if you don’t feel comfortable using the stove, please ask someone for help, or make another meal for breakfast. 

Reflection: take a photo and save in a folder on your phone/computer. This can later be used as a reminder of how independent you’ve been with your morning routines. Bon Appetit!

Activity 4


The First Impression Can Be a Dealbreaker: Six Ways to Make a Good One

1 Always be on time. Even if it means being early and cooling your heels. No one likes tardiness or excuses. “If an interviewee or even someone at a party where they’re trying to get noticed doesn’t have the wherewithal to be punctual, then what does that say about them as employees?”

2. Clothes make the man/woman. A neat, clean-cut appearance gives you a high mark right off the top, but make sure you dress to suit the occasion. For example, you may be a bohemian at heart, but for a business gathering, leave the sandals at home. Sometimes, though, your outward appearance can make a difference in the most unlikely setting. “I usually don’t dress up to go to the movies, but one day I did. Before the movie started, I struck up a conversation with the woman next to me who turned out to be looking for someone with my qualifications, and I got the job. I’m convinced that my looking presentable had a lot to do with that,” says Kate Proto.

3. Make eye contact. Even if you have butterflies in your stomach when meeting new people, do not look over their shoulder or head or anywhere but at them. “I know I’ve lost a few jobs because I get nervous and fidget, but I’m learning to focus on the person, listen attentively and not let my eyes wander,” says Tim Deciccio.

4. Speak clearly, distinctly and succinctly. You may be a fan of Marlon Brando’s mumbling or Ben Stein’s monotone — but these won’t fly if you’re trying to make a good first impression. At the same time, don’t monopolize the conversation. Be lively; but above all, be a good listener.

5. Do NOT chew gum in public. “One does not chew gum in public,” a royal spokesman said. Neither should you, fellow commoner, if you want an employer to take you seriously. A side note: Do pay attention to bad breath. That is a royal turn-off as well.

6. Get a good grip. “I call it the dead-fish handshake, you know the kind where you shake someone’s hand and there’s no life there? ” notes recruiter Schraf. No one expects or wants you to have a Conan the Barbarian grip, but a firm grasp of the hand denotes energy and confidence.


*What examples are similar to above “first impression” when making a first impression “on-line” via Zoom? And why?

*What examples are different to above “first impression” when making a first impression “on-line” via Zoom? And why?

*What do you think is important to think about as a first impression when meeting online via zoom?

Save answers on a google doc. This will be discussed in a later class if you decide to take the JobClub class. Have fun with it!!  And for the weekend – please look on-line for what jobs that are available. What jobs are needed right now?

Activity 5

Writing Effective Emails

  1. Proofread.

If you are asking someone else to do work for you, take the time to make your message look professional.

While your spell checker won’t catch every mistake, at the very least it will catch a few typos. Take an extra minute or two before you hit “send”. Show a draft to a someone else in order to see whether it actually makes sense.

  1. Don’t assume privacy.

Remember, praise in public, and criticize in private. Don’t send anything over e-mail that you wouldn’t want posted with your name attached.

E-mail is not secure. Just as random pedestrians could easily reach into your mailbox and intercept the envelopes that you send and receive through the post office, a curious hacker, a malicious criminal, or the FBI can easily intercept your e-mail. In some companies, the e-mail administrator has the ability to read any and all e-mail messages (and may fire you if you write anything inappropriate).

  1. Distinguish between formal and informal situations.

When you are writing to a friend or a close colleague, it is OK to use “smilies” 🙂 , abbreviations (IIRC for “if I recall correctly”, LOL for “laughing out loud,” etc.) and nonstandard punctuation and spelling (like that found in instant messaging or chat rooms). These shortcuts are generally signs of friendly intimacy, like sharing cold pizza with a family friend. Don’t use informal language when your reader expects a more formal approach. Always know the situation, and write accordingly.

  1. Respond Promptly.

If you want to appear professional, answer your emails within two days. Even if your reply is, “Sorry, I’m too busy to help you now,” at least your correspondent won’t be waiting in vain for your reply.

  1. Show Respect and Restraint

Many a war has been started by someone who hit “reply all” instead of “reply.”

While most people know that e-mail is not private, it is good form to ask the sender before forwarding a personal message. If someone e-mails you a request, it is perfectly acceptable to forward the request to a person who can help.

Use BCC instead of CC when sending sensitive information to large groups. The name of everyone in the CC list goes out with the message, but the names of people on the BCC list (“blind carbon copy”) are hidden. Put your own name in the “To” box if your mail editor doesn’t like the blank space.

Practice writing an email to me and BCC Anders at requesting one of your accommodations listed in your IEP (or just one you remember).  

Your email should include:

  • Subject line
  • An attachment (if you know how to attach)
  • A greeting
  • An introductory sentence
  • A specific request of an accommodation
  • A closing sentence letting me know how soon you would like a response
  • A signature
  • Proofread and revise your work
  • Send

Activity 6

Complete day 3 of the flexibility challenge!



April 9, 2020

Activity 1

Connections staff and students will be having a meeting on Zoom at 12:30pm Friday April 10.  Please go to and download the application.  You can use a smart phone, tablet or computer.  Tomorrow morning by 9am you will be getting an email and please follow the step listed below.  We are really looking forward to Connecting with as many students as possible tomorrow!

Click this link and then click again!      How to enter a Zoom meeting Guide

Activity 2

Disinfecting your house: watch the video below and answer the following questions:

  1.  Up to how long can the virus survive outside of the body?
  2. List 5 high touch surfaces
  3. Do you have any cleaning products at home you can use to disinfect high touch surfaces?
  4. If it’s been more than a day since high touch surfaces have been cleaned, go around your house with disinfectant and clean them.

Activity 3


COOKING – French Toast.

Please check to see that you have needed ingredients at home before you start cooking (click on the link below).

Watch the video and follow the steps in the link above. Remember SAFETY FIRST!! If you’re uncertain of steps or if you don’t feel comfortable using the stove, please ask someone for help, or make another meal for breakfast. 

Reflection: take a photo and save in a folder on your phone/computer. This can later be used as a reminder of how independent you’ve been with your morning routines. Bon Appetit!

Activity 4

Writing Effective Emails Part 4 – Identifying yourself clearly

When contacting someone who does not know you, always include your name and any other important identification information in the first few sentences.

If you are following up on a face-to-face contact, you might appear too shy if you assume the person you are sending to email to doesn’t remember you; but you can drop casual hints to jog their memory: “I enjoyed talking with you about Connections in the elevator the other day.”

If your e-mails address is  “” or “ create a new email for professional use.  Here is a link to create a new gmail:

While formal phrases such as “Dear Professor Sneedlewood” and “Sincerely Yours,” are unnecessary in e-mail, when contacting someone outside your own organization, you should write a signature line that includes your full name and at least a link to a blog or online profile page (something that does not require your recipient to log in first).

Activity 5

It’s a beautiful day, try to go outside for at least 15 minutes while practicing social distancing!

or complete day 2 of the flexibility challenge

Activity 6


5 Factors That Demonstrate a Strong Work Ethic



In the link above there are 5 factors mentioned , what are they? 

Out of those 5, what are the 3 that you currently do best? And give an example of how you do that?

Which one is hardest for you? And what can you do to improve on this?

Type into a google.doc and save it for “Job-Club” class that will start next week.  Good luck!!


April 8, 2020

Hello and here are today’s activities.  We are thinking of having an “assembly” on Friday using an online group meeting program called Zoom.  Tomorrows lesson will include instruction on how to use Zoom.

Activity 1

Please watch the video and answer the two questions below:

What are the two ways you can protect yourself and others from getting sick?

What are three symptoms of Covid-19?

Activity 2


Print out and work on the time capsule activity located on the website. If you don’t have a printer at home just create the same, or similar activity on regular paper. OR, if you’re tech-savvy you can create your own time capsule activity using your computer/tablet. 

I recommend working on this over the next 3 days. It should be fun. If there are parts of the activity that you feel doesn’t relate to you, feel free to skip it/change it or create your own. 

If you have questions or just want to share parts of “your time capsule” you can do so in your advocate meeting. 

Activity 3 


COOKING – Egg in a hole. This is simple, and still the breakfast of champions.

Watch the video and follow the steps in the link above. Remember SAFETY FIRST!! If you’re uncertain of steps or if you don’t feel comfortable using the stove, please ask someone for help, or make another meal for breakfast. 

Reflection: take a photo and save in a folder on your phone/computer. This can later be used as a reminder of how independent you’ve been with your morning routines. Bon Appetit!

Activity 4

Writing an effective email part 3 – Avoid attachments.

E-mail works best when you just copy and paste the most important text into the body (writing) of the e-mail. Try to reduce the number of steps people will need to take in order to act on your message.

If your recipient actually needs to view the full file in order to edit or archive it, then of course sending an attachment is appropriate.

In general, attachments

   * take time to download (and check for viruses)

   * take up needless space on your recipient’s computer, and

   * don’t always translate correctly for people who read their e-mail on portable devices.


To: Bessie Professional

From: Morris Ponsybil

Subject: E-mail tips — a subject for an office workshop?

Bessie, I came across a book that has lots of tips on streamlining professional communications. Has anyone volunteered to present at the office workshop next month? Let me know if you’d like me to run a little seminar (2o minutes?) on using e-mail effectively.

Below, I’ll paste the table of contents from the book. Let me know if you want me send you the whole thing as a PDF.


To: All 1000 Employees

From: Eager Edgar

Subject: A helpful book everyone should read

Hello, everyone. I’ve attached a PDF that I think you’ll all find very useful. This is the third time I sent it the file — the version I sent yesterday had a typo on page 207, so I’ve sent the whole thing again. Since some of you noted that the large file size makes it a bit awkward, I’ve also attached each chapter as a separate document. Let me know what you think!


   * Big Honking File.pdf (356MB)

   * BHF Cover.pdf (25MB)

   * BHF Chapter 1.pdf (35MB)

   * BHF Chapter 2.pdf (27MB)

Activity 5

Top 5 Personal Hygiene Habits: Just do it!

  • Wash your hair and body often.  If possible take a shower or bath every day.
  • Brushing teeth after each meal is a good way to avoid gum disease and tooth decay.  It is very important to at least brush teeth after breakfast and before going to bed.
  • Wash hands with soap & warm-hot water after going to the toilet, and throughout the day often.  Keep fingernails short and clean.  Avoid touching your eyes/nose/mouth/face. 
  • Change into clean clothes every day.  Dirty clothes should be washed in warm to hot water with laundry soap before wearing them again.  Remove from washer and dry immediately to prevent odors.
  • Turn away from other people and cover the nose and mouth with a tissue or the elbow when coughing or sneezing.  This helps keep germs from spreading in the air.

Activity 6


If you’re interested in working on bus planning skills and getting around in the community there is a tab on the Connections website with some hypothetical scenarios for you to solve.

Activity 7

Now it’s time to move! 

You can take a bike ride (helmet and mask please)


April 7, 2020

Activity 1

The most important thing you can do to keep yourself and your loved ones safe is to socially isolate and wash your hands.  Below is a quick video review of hand washing.  Practice it!

Activity 2

Do you know how to do your own laundry?  Great, if you can, decide if you need to an create a plan to do some today and do it 🙂 Every families situation is different so when doing home activities you need to change the directions to fit your tools available.  Some families go to a laundromat, some have a machine at home but air dry their clothes and you can even wash small items in a sink.

If you need a review, please go to this website:

Answer the following questions and act on them if needed:

  • Are there dirty clothes on the floor?  If so, find a hamper or create piles with dark colored clothes and light colored clothes
  • Are there clean clothes which need to be put away?  If so, fold and put them away
  • Can I do laundry right now?  If so, just do it!  If not, create a plan and follow through with it.
  • Am I half way through the chore?  Keep on going 🙂

Activity 3


Elevator speech:

Watch the video

Read the article:

Work sheet (basic) – 30 Sec Elevator pitch

Start a google doc and work on these first basic steps: 

Who are you? (Write 2+ sentences, see examples in handout)

What would you like to do? (Write 2+  sentences, see examples in handout)

Why?  (Write 2 + sentences, see examples in handout)

Activity 4 


Here is a link to how to disinfect and clean groceries once you bring them into your home.

Reflection (write 1 paragraph):

What did you learn? 

What are some steps you take to help reduce the risk of bringing in Covid-19 into your home once you come back from the store? 

COOKING – Fried egg. This is simple, and still the breakfast of champions.

Follow the steps in the link below. Remember SAFETY FIRST!! If you’re uncertain of steps or if you don’t feel comfortable using the stove, please ask someone for help, or make another meal for breakfast. 

Reflection: take a photo and save in a folder on your phone/computer. This can later be used as a reminder of how independent you’ve been with your morning routines. Bon Appetit!

Activity 5

Writing Effective Emails

Keep the message focused and readable!

Often people only read partway through a long message, hit “reply” as soon as they have something to contribute, and forget to keep reading. This is part of human nature.

If your e-mail contains multiple messages that are only loosely related, in order to avoid the risk that your reader will reply only to the first item that grabs his or her fancy, you could number your points to ensure they are all read (adding an introductory line that states how many parts there are to the message). If the points are substantial enough, split them up into separate messages so your recipient can delete, respond, file, or forward each item individually.

  • Use standard capitalization and spelling, especially when your message asks your recipient to do work for you.
    • If you are a teenager, writing a quick gushing “thx 4 ur help 2day ur gr8” may make a busy professional smile at your gratitude.
    • But there comes a time when the sweetness of the gesture isn’t enough. u want ur prof r ur boss 2 think u cant spl? LOL 😉
  • Skip lines between paragraphs.
  • Avoid fancy typefaces. Don’t depend upon bold font or large size to get attention. Many people’s e-mail readers only display plain text. 
  • Use standard capitalization. All-caps comes across as shouting, and no caps invokes the image of a lazy teenager. Regardless of your intention, people will respond accordingly.

Here is an example of a clear email:

Dear Sir or Madam,

I’m writing to order some supplies for our graduation party next week. Can you provide us with 4000 of your plastic wine glasses, code number 54GG? The red ones are best, but your website says these are out of stock, in which case beige is fine. We’d also like to order paper tablecloths and napkins. If possible, could you check what our last order was and supply us with the same? Please let me know if there are any problems with that order of if you need more information.

Sincerely yours, Alex Case

Activity 6

Time to get your body moving!


Go outside if possible!  


April 6, 2020

Activity 1

Hello and welcome to Monday!  Take a moment to play the video below to practice “box breathing”  this call help calm nerves and refocus the brain.  Try to set a timer and breath like the video for about 60 seconds.  You can also “see” the box in your brain or even trace a square path with your finger.

Box Breathing, or square breathing is a technique used to calm oneself by taking slow, deep breaths. This can heighten performance and concentration while also being a good stress reliever.Intentional deep breathing like this can actually calm and regulate the autonomic nervous system. This system regulates involuntary body functions like temperature. It can lower blood pressure and provide an almost-immediate sense of calm.Use this GIF to practice or draw a box with your fingers or visualize in our mind.Step 1:Sitting upright, slowly exhale, getting all the oxygen out of your lungs. Focus on this intention and be conscious of what you’re doing.Step 2:Inhale slowly and deeply through your nose to the count of four. In this step, count to four very slowly in your head. Feel the air fill your lungs, one section at a time, until your lungs are completely full and the air moves into your abdomen.Step 3:Hold your breath for another slow count of four.Step 4:Exhale through your mouth for the same slow count of four, expelling the air from your lungs and abdomen. Be conscious of the feeling of the air leaving your lungs.Step 5:Hold your breath for the same slow count of four before repeating this process.You can also Try Nasal Breathing. Proper nasal breathing reduces hypertension and stress, filters and warm or cool air as it enters our bodies and allows our sinuses to produce nitric oxide which regulates blood pressures and boosts the immune system Image Description: Teal colour background with a white square in the center. 4 Arrows in the box parallel to each side with the points facing each corner going clockwise. Above the Top Side it reads "Breathe In" in white then turns black after 4 seconds. Along the Right side it reads "Hold" in white then turns black after 4 seconds. Below the Bottom Side it reads "Breathe Out" in white then turns black after 4 seconds. Along the Left Side it reads "Hold" in white then turns black after 4 seconds. In the white square, there is a countdown that changes numbers from 4,3,2,1 and then begins again. The numbers of the countdown are white and are synchronized with the side of the square letters that turns white.

Posted by YFS Wellness Centre on Friday, December 7, 2018

Activity 2

Now for some self care!  We spend much of our time in our bed sleeping or just hanging out. Click the link below to review how to make your bed

 Ask yourself the following questions:

  1. When was the last time your sheets were changed?
  2. If more than a week or two, it’s time for a new set.
  3. What size is your bed?
  4. Are there clean sheets to put on?
  5. If not, can you do laundry? Get someone’s help is needed 
  6. Make your bed!

Activity 3


Day 1. 

Whats Expected on the JOB. 



Employers need a person who can demonstrate:

  1. A Positive Attitude – think about the aspects below and write what you think it means:


Aspect: What do you think it means?
Be honest  
Work well with others  
Work without being told  
Look good  
Feel good about yourself  
Set goals  

Appearance in interview and on the job:

Name:                                                                                       Date:
         YES          NO
Have I showered or bathed today?    
Is my hair combed?    
Is my hair properly trimmed?    
Have I brushed my teeth?    
Is my breath fresh?    
Is my face clean?    
Are my fingernails clean and trimmed?    
Have I shaved today?    
Should I wear fragrance?  (How much do I use?)    
Am I wearing too much make-up?    
Is my clothing neat and clean? (No holes, stains, spills, or wrinkles?)    
Is my clothing appropriate for the interview or the job?    
Is my jewelry appropriate? (Earrings, nose or facial jewelry, bracelets, necklaces?)    
Should I wear a hat or cap?    
Are my shoes appropriate for the interview or the job?    
Are my shoes clean?    

Activity 4


Vocabulary being used in cooking. Read through and make sure you’re familiar with this terminology.

Cleaning the kitchen: Watch video and read through the steps. Note – more thorough cleaning is needed in these times of Covid-19, more info on this will follow.

Activity 5

Writing an Effective E-Mail – This will be a seven part activity and today we will review the importance of:

  1. Writing a meaningful subject line.

Recipients scan the subject line in order to decide whether to open, forward, file, or trash a message. Remember — your message is not the only one in your recipient’s mailbox. Before you hit “send,” take a moment to write a subject line that accurately describes the content.

Yes  – Subject: “10 confirmed for Friday… will we need a larger room?” Upon reading this revised, informative subject line, the recipient immediately starts thinking about the size of the room, not about whether it will be worth it to open the e-mail.No   Subject: [Blank]      If you don’t put a subject line on your e-mail, you are sending the message that your name in the “From” line is all your recipient should need in order to make it a top priority. That could come across as arrogant, or at the very least, thoughtless. Take advantage of the opportunity to get your recipient thinking about your message even before opening it.

Some other acceptable examples…

  • Subject: Math 10 Class, homework question.
  • Subject: Follow-up about a job. We spoke Monday at the River Rd. location.
  • Subject: Board Game Night, Thursday @ 6pm

Maybe –  Subject: “Follow-up about Friday”   Fractionally better — provided that the recipient remembers why a follow-up was necessary.

Maybe – Subject: “That file you requested.”  If you’re confident your recipient will recognize your e-mail address, and really is expecting a file from you, then this would be fine. But keep in mind that many e-mail providers get scads of virus-laden spam with vague titles like this. The more specific you are, the more likely your recipient’s spam-blocker will let your message through.

Don’t do! – Subject: “Important! Read Immediately!!” What is important to you may not be important to your reader. Rather than brashly announcing that the secret contents of your message are important, write an informative headline that actually communicates at least the core of what you feel is so important: “Emergency: All Cars in the Lower Lot Will Be Towed in 1 Hour.”

Don’t do! –  Subject: “Quick question.” If the question is quick, why not just ask it in the subject line? This subject line is hardly useful.


Activity 6

Get 20 minutes of moderate exercise.  This can look like taking a walk where you make sure you are 6 feet away from others and have a cloth mask or bandana covering your mouth. 

You can also following along on this video:

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