Temple Grandin, fully Mary Temple Grandin

Grandin, fully Mary Temple Grandin

American Professor of Animal Science at Colorado State University, Author, Autistic Activist, Consultant to Livestock Industry

Author Quotes

What would happen if the autism gene was eliminated from the gene pool? You would have a bunch of people standing around in a cave, chatting and socializing and not getting anything done.

When a sensory therapy works, the child will usually want to do it. Therapies that work should show a beneficial effect on behavior. In some cases, sensory therapies can help reduce or stop self-abusive behaviors. When this works, the child will start to hit himself, but will stop because normal pain sensation returns.

When I was in high school and college, I thought everybody could think in pictures. And my first inkling to my thinking was even different was when I was in college and I read an article about, you know, some scientist said that the caveman could not have designed tools until they had language.

When I was younger, I was looking for this magic meaning of life.

When you take a drug to treat high blood pressure or diabetes, you have an objective test to measure blood pressure and the amount of sugar in the blood. It is straight-forward. With autism, you are looking for changes in behavior.

Who do you think made the first stone spears? The Asperger guy. If you were to get rid of all the autism genetics, there would be no more Silicon Valley.

You have got to keep autistic children engaged with the world. You cannot let them tune out.

You simply cannot tell other people they are stupid, even if they really are stupid.

What are the most common sensory therapies? Deep pressure such as rolling up in mats, weighted vest, squeeze machine or weighted blanket to help sleep. Slow swinging 10 to 12 times a minute for calming. Brushing the skin with soft brushes for calming (Wilbarger Method) Irlen lenses and pastel-colored paper to help with reading. Pale colored lenses help a subset of children with autism or dyslexia with reading. When the child picks the right pale color that works for them, the print will stop jiggling on the page. Often pale pink, light blue or light tan sunglasses are helpful. More information is on the Irlen website. Try printing reading materials on different pastel papers such as light green, light blue, tan, gray, lavender, and light yellow. The child must choose the paper that works best for them. Children who respond well to colored lenses and colored paper often cannot tolerate 50- or 60-cycle florescent lights. If possible, get the child away from florescent lights. They can see the flicker of florescent lights and they make the room flicker like a strobe light. Chewing Activities ? Some children respond well to having things to chew. Chewing activities will calm them down. They need oral stimulation. Balls and other items to hold in their hand and squeeze. This helps some kids sit still. Auditory Training ? There are a number of CDs and devices for auditory training. The child listens to music that has been electronically modified. For some children, auditory training may help reduce sound sensitivity and improve the ability to hear hard consonant sounds. Some auditory training programs are very expensive and the results are highly variable and may not be worth the cost. Try simpler methods first such as speaking slowly to the child to help him hear hard consonant sounds. Singing is helpful for some children and they may be able to learn to sing words before they can learn to speak them. Singing coupled with careful enunciation of hard consonants, such as the ?c? and ?t? in cat may be helpful.

What I've tried to do is combine both my personal experiences with scientific research. I like to cross the divide between the personal world and the scientific world.

There?s a saying in engineering: You can build things cheap, fast, or right, but not all three.

There's a point where anecdotal evidence becomes truth.

Unfortunately, most people never observe the natural cycle of birth and death. They do not realize that for one living thing to survive, another living thing must die.

We do know, however that almost no animal routinely kills prey animal on an indiscriminate basis. The only wild animal I?ve seen who will sometimes violate this rule is the coyote. Most of the time a coyote eats the animals he kills, but occasionally coyotes will go on a lamb-killing spree, killing twenty and eating only one. I believe it?s possible coyotes have lost some of their economy of behavior by living in close proximity to humans and overabundant food supplies. A coyote that kills twenty lambs and eats only one isn?t going to have to trek a hundred miles to find more lambs next week. Any sheep rancher will have several hundred other lambs that will be just as easy to catch later on, and the coyote knows it. Wild coyotes have probably lost the knowledge that you shouldn't waste food or energy.

We have got to work on keeping these children engaged with the world.

We raise them for us; that means we owe them some respect. Nature is cruel but we don?t have to be. I wouldn?t want to have my guts ripped out by a lion. I'd much rather die in a slaughter house if it were done right.

What a horse does under compulsion he does blindly, and his performance is no more beautiful than would be that of a ballet-dancer taught by whip and goad. The performances of horse or man so treated would seem to be displays of clumsy gestures rather than of grace and beauty. What we need is that the horse should of his own accord exhibit his finest airs and paces at set signals.

The most important thing people did for me was to expose me to new things.

The only place on earth where immortality is provided is in libraries. This is the collective memory of humanity.

The squeeze machine is not going to cure anybody, but it may help them relax; and a relaxed person will usually have better behavior.

The thing about being autistic is that you gradually get less and less autistic, because you keep learning, you keep learning how to behave. It's like being in a play; I'm always in a play.

The word autism still conveys a fixed and dreadful meaning to most people?they visualize a child mute, rocking, screaming, inaccessible, cut off from human contact. And we almost always speak of autistic children, never of autistic adults, as if such children never grew up, or were somehow mysteriously spirited off the planet, out of society.

The worst thing you can do is nothing. (re: teaching children with autism).

There definitely are some strengths [having autism]. You see, there?s a point where mild autism is just a personality variation. There?s no black and white dividing line between autism and non-autism from the mild end of the spectrum. And some people on the mild end of the spectrum have extreme talent areas in things like computer programming, mathematics, art, design, graphics, writing skills, and I?m a big believer on building on the child?s strengths.

There is a tremendous range of children with a PDD label.

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Grandin, fully Mary Temple Grandin
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American Professor of Animal Science at Colorado State University, Author, Autistic Activist, Consultant to Livestock Industry