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

Boys who cry can work for Google. Boys who trash computers cannot. I once was at a science conference, and I saw a NASA scientist who had just found out that his project was canceled?a project he?d worked on for years. He was maybe sixty-five years old, and you know what? He was crying. And I thought, Good for him. That?s why he was able to reach retirement age working in a job he loved.

But my favorite of Einstein's words on religion is Science without religion is lame. Religion without science is blind. I like this because both science and religion are needed to answer life's great questions.

Children between the ages of five to ten years are even more variable. They are going to vary from very high functioning, capable of doing normal school work, to nonverbal who have all kinds of neurological problems.

Children in my generation when they were teenagers they had jobs and learned how to work. I cleaned horse stalls," she said. "When I was 8 years old, my mother made me be a party hostess - shake hands, take coats. In the 1950s, social skills were taught in a much more rigid way so kids who were mildly autistic were forced to learn them. It hurts the autistic much more than it does the normal kids to not have these skills formally taught

At the age of three, Tito Mukhopadhyay was diagnosed with severe autism, but his mother, Soma, refused to accept the conventional wisdom of the time that her son would be unable to interact with the outside world. She read to him, taught him to write in English, and challenged him to write his own stories.

Autism facts: - 1 in 88 U.S. children has been identified with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). - 1 in 85 Colorado children is affected by the disorder. - The national estimated prevalence of ASDs increased 78 percent between 2002 and 2008. - ASDs were found to affect almost five times as many boys as girls. - The majority (62 percent) of children with ASDs did not have intellectual disabilities.

Autism is a neurological disorder. It's not caused by bad parenting. It's caused by, you know, abnormal development in the brain. The emotional circuits in the brain are abnormal. And there also are differences in the white matter, which is the brain's computer cables that hook up the different brain departments.

A sensory diet simply means that at certain intervals, a child may need a break to calm his nervous system down. Sensory problems are on a continuum from mild to severe. Children with more severe sensory problems will need more frequent breaks to calm down an over aroused nervous system. During these breaks, the child can engage in sensory activities that are calming. It is often best to have the breaks at scheduled times to prevent accidentally rewarding a child for throwing a tantrum. If the child gets sensory breaks after he/she behaves badly, he/she may behave badly to obtain more breaks.

A treatment method or an educational method that will work for one child may not work for another child. The one common denominator for all of the young children is that early intervention does work, and it seems to improve the prognosis.

And while we are on the subject of medication you always need to look at risk versus benefit.

Animals like novelty if they can choose to investigate it; they fear novelty if you shove it in their faces.

Animals make us Human.

As you may know, some of the stereotyped behaviors exhibited by autistic children are also found in zoo animals who are raised in a barren environment.

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.

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