Temple is one of the biggest advocates for people on the spectrum. She is a great example of how successful someone on the spectrum can be. Grandin achieved considerable academic success. She earned a psychology degree, followed by a master's degree in animal science, and a doctoral degree in animal science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She then worked as a consultant to companies with large animal slaughterhouse operations, advising them on ways of improving the quality of life of their cattle.
Often times, we only hear the negative about Autism. IDEA House is a school that brings out the positive in our kids. We believe in the. In fact, they teach us each and every day and they bring us so much joy.
I am currently reading the book, How I See It, by Temple Grandin. I thought I would take these first installments of our blog, to share her insights.
Long friend of Temple Grandin, Dr, Ruth Sullivan, speaks of her friend so honorably. I wanted to share these words because I want to offer hope to parents that might feel that their child with Autism has a less than productive life.
Temple, is one of the hardest workers I have ever known. In my opinion, it is mainly that trait that has helped her become the successful engaging adult she is now, despite severe difficulties along the way. She is knowledgeable. She is willing to help parents as well as others with autism. She is insightful. And she is courageous..and not least, she is funny.
For many individuals with autism, it is difficult-to-impossible to understand and develop 'theory of mind,' that intangible mental process by which most of us intuitively notice and 'read' the nuances of social situations: how others are feeling, what they may be thinking, and the meaning behind their nonverbal actions. Temple's persistence in learning this, and her strong analytical skills while doing so, have helped significantly in improving her social thinking and social sense.
Temple's writings are a result of her keen detective-like analysis of human beings, her extensive personal thought, and the wisdom gained only through the personal experiences that make up Temple Grandin.
Temple takes time to listen--without preconceived ideas or judgment...she seeks solutions, from teaching strategies to the larger lifespan issues.
From the words of Temple, "I didn't become social overnight. There wasn't a point when some magic switch turned on in my brain and the social stuff made sense after that. I'm the person I am today because of all the experiences I've had and the opportunities those experiences offered me to learn, little by little. It wasn't easy; sometimes, it was really difficult. I've made a lot of mistakes, but I just kept going until I got it right. And, I'm still learning today! That's what I want other people on the spectrum to learn. You just can't give up. You have to keep trying."
I am the assistant director at IDEA House and also have Autism. Temple's words are mine, each and every day. Don't give up. I have to keep trying. I see that in our kid's as well. They are some of the bravest, hardest working, caring, loving individuals I have ever met.
IDEA House Educational Services, Assistant Director Ann Kagarise