Temple Grandin, fully Mary Temple Grandin

Temple
Grandin, fully Mary Temple Grandin
1947

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

Author Quotes

Some children may need a behavioral approach, whereas other children may need a sensory approach.

Some people with autism who don't talk, all they hear are vowel sounds. Like if I said 'cup,' they might just hear 'uh.'

One of my sensory problems was hearing sensitivity, where certain loud noises, such as a school bell, hurt my ears. It sounded like a dentist drill going through my ears.

One of the problems today is for a kid to get any special services in school, they have to have a label. The problem with autism is you've got a spectrum that goes from Einstein down to someone with no language," said Grandin, who has a form of high-functioning autism known as Asperger's syndrome. "Steve Jobs was probably mildly on the autistic spectrum. Basically, you've probably known people who were geeky and socially awkward but very smart. When does geeks and nerds become autism? That's a gray area. Half the people in Silicon Valley probably have autism.

One big question that's come up is: Has autism increased on the mild side of things? I don't think so - they've always been here. Some of this is increased detection.

Nature is cruel but we don't have to be

Neither living nor learning was good without order.

Normal people have an incredible lack of empathy. They have good emotional empathy, but they don?t have much empathy for the autistic kid who is screaming at the baseball game because he can?t stand the sensory overload. Or the autistic kid having a meltdown in the school cafeteria because there?s too much stimulation.

My mind can always separate the two. Even when I am very upset, I keep reviewing the facts over and over until I can come to a logical conclusion.

My mind sort of works like a search engine. You ask me something, and I start seeing pictures.

My mind works like Google for images. You put in a key word; it brings up pictures.

My problems are sort of more on a nuisance level. I can't stand scratchy clothes, I've got to have soft kinds of cotton against my skin, and I don't know why some 100% cotton t-shirts itch and others don't; it has something to do with the weave.

My Advice is: You always have to keep persevering.

My grandfather was an engineer who invented the automatic pilot for airplanes.

My life is basically my work.

Most important skills taught under age 8. Learning how to take turns. This was taught with a board game. When I got a little older, the whole family played cards. Lessons learned from turn taking in board games can be applied to taking turns doing activities as a family. When the family went to a movie, I had to take turns with my sister picking the movie. Another example would be choosing a restaurant or a store to visit. Saying please and thank you. Shaking hands and greeting people. It was demonstrated like teaching a person in a foreign country how to behave. Mother and teachers demonstrated the correct distance, looking in the eye and the amount of hand pressure. I practiced my skills by being party hostess when my mother invited guests for dinner. Shopping and learning the value of money. I got 50 cents a week to buy things I wanted such as comics, balsa wood toy airplanes, kites, and ice cream bars. These were items that if I wanted them I had to buy them myself. I also had to do all the interactions with the store staff. Mom stayed away when I made my purchases. My favorite toy airplane cost 69 cents so I had to have two weeks of allowance to buy it. Comics were 10 cents and a kite and string was 20 cents. Today these prices would be higher but I learned the value of money from my purchases. I also learned that I had to wait and save to get the 69 cent airplane. My ability in art was always encouraged. My teachers and mother encouraged me to draw many different things.

Most people don't realize that the slaughter plant is much gentler than nature. Animals in the wild die from starvation, predators, or exposure. If I had a choice, I would rather go through a slaughter system than have my guts ripped out by coyotes or lions while I was still conscious. 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.

Language just gradually came in, one or two stressed words a time. Before then, I would just scream. I couldn?t talk. I couldn?t get my words out. So the only way I could tell someone what I wanted was to scream. If I didn?t want to wear a hat, the only way I knew to communicate was screaming and throwing it on the floor.

Let's get into talking about how autism is similar animal behavior. The thing is I don't think in a language, and animals don't think in a language. It's sensory based thinking, thinking in pictures, thinking in smells, thinking in touches. It's putting these sensory based memories into categories.

Many autistic children like to smell things, and smell may provide more reliable information about their surroundings than either vision or hearing.

Mild autism can give you a genius like Einstein. If you have severe autism, you could remain nonverbal. You don't want people to be on the severe end of the spectrum. But if you got rid of all the autism genetics, you wouldn't have science or art. All you would have is a bunch of social 'yak yaks.'

It is never too late to expand the mind of a person on the autism spectrum.

It?s very important for the parents of young autistic children to encourage them to talk, or for those that don?t talk, to give them a way of communicating, like a picture board, where they can point to a glass of milk, or a jacket if they?re cold, or the bathroom.

It's much more work for the mother of an autistic child to have a job, because working with an autistic child is such a hassle until they go to school.

It's very important for the parents of young autistic children to encourage them to talk, or for those that don't talk, to give them a way of communicating, like a picture board, where they can point to a glass of milk, or a jacket if they're cold, or the bathroom. If they want something, then they need to learn to request that thing.

Author Picture
First Name
Temple
Last Name
Grandin, fully Mary Temple Grandin
Birth Date
1947
Bio

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