October 1, 2012

Temple Grandin Reveals Her Advice for Educating Autistic Kids

Dr. Temple Grandin has unique insight into the minds of autistic children. Her approach—stay positive.
Dr. Temple Grandin offers tips for special educators and parents with autistic children.
(Photo: Rosalie Winard)

The following essay was written by Dr. Temple Grandin exclusively for TakePart. Special educators need to look at what a child can do instead of what he/she cannot do.

“Kids with autism often get fixated on one thing, and it is important to expand their fixations.”

There needs to be more emphasis on building up and expanding the skills a child is good at. Too often people get locked into a label such as dyslexia, ADHD, or autism, and they cannot see beyond the label. Kids that get a label often have uneven skills. They may be talented in one area and have a real deficiency in another.

“I was appalled to learn that some schools are very rigid about forcing a child to only study materials that are designed for his/her grade level.”

In my case, I was really good at art, but doing algebra made no sense. It is important to work on areas where a child is weak, but an emphasis on deficits should not get to the point where building the area of strength gets neglected. READ MORE >>
  • Methods to Expand Abilities
  • Never Hold a Gifted Child Back
  • Use Abilities to Do Assignments


Dr. Temple Grandin’s achievements are remarkable because she was an autistic child. She was motivated to pursue a career as a scientist and livestock equipment designer. Temple lectures to parents and teachers throughout the U.S. on her experiences with autism. She was honored in Time magazine’s 2010 “The 100 Most Influential People in the World.”


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