Temple Grandin: The World Needs all Kinds of Minds

You may have heard of Temple Grandin.  She is a remarkable inventor, Doctor of Animal Science, professor and author who consults to the livestock industry on animal behavior.  HBO recently produced a full-length film on Grandin starring Claire Danes and Grandin’s name and story has appeared up in virtually every type of media, including The Today Show, Larry King Live, Time, People, Forbes and the New York Times.

Temple is also autistic.  She didn’t speak until she was three-and-a-half years old.  As an adult, Temple is now able to describe how she thinks and perceives the world.  It is fascinating to hear her insight on two worlds and to begin to appreciate more fully the true breadth of the spectrum of human capacity and configuration.

Enjoy this presentation.  Not everyone thinks like you, and Temple Grandin explains not only why that is true, but what we can do to make sure that children are handled properly so that the value inherent in the differences between individuals is not lost in the shuffle.  The world needs all kinds of minds!

Have a wonderful day, my friends, and rejoice in the fact that you are unique.  The world needs all kinds of minds!

16 thoughts on “Temple Grandin: The World Needs all Kinds of Minds

  1. Pingback: uberVU - social comments

  2. Estelle

    I love how she describes the example of working with autistic children, that they tend to be fixated on things, so if they are fixated on a truck then use a truck to teach them math for example. I know from teaching seniors how to use computers, internet, and social media that people do have different ways of learning. You have to be perceptive to how they learn and start from where they are in order to take them to the next point. If you treat everyone the same in this regard, it is like taking people from point A to E with no B,C or D and they just won’t get it. They’ll be frustrated rather than inspired, and their potential value won’t be realized. Thank you for sharing this presentation today!


  3. Joshua Folkard

    True understanding of others is what is brought to mind here for me. Back of what is being indicated here is the encouragement of others through focusing on what is right with them, even if we don’t have a specific understanding as to how they see the world. Cultivating and inspiring this in our children, helping them to see that as they also have this non-judgmental approach, the world around them is lifted up.
    Far too often are ones personal judgments of an others handling or mishandling of a set of circumstances limiting, by saying to the world “if I had been in that circumstance I would have handled it differently” or “they should have…” automatically ignoring the uniqueness of the individual involved, furthermore judging something that they have no practical awareness of because unfortunately or fortunately they do not see the world as the other does.
    What a freeing thought for all to release and relax into a heightened perspective with respect to those in our worlds
    Thanks Gregg for this new perspective.


    1. Thanks for your insightful comment, Josh. IMHO there is a gulf of difference between discernment (which is helpful) and judgment (which is not). Perhaps part of it relates to the willingness to maintain an open-minded, generous approach in your view of others instead of forming rigid, prejudiced views of others based on a limited viewpoint.


  4. Kimberly

    One of the most amazing people in her story is the science teacher, his part was well acknowledged in the movie and she referenced him a few times in the TED presentation. What a great man for not just seeing her inadequacies but taking the time to see her strengths.
    I love too that she recognizes it and appreciates him. It’s a full circle!
    I think most of us has that one or two individuals that have contributed to the success we have achieved in our lives. They challenged us to be more or as is said “taught us to fish”. What a great time to thank them and then look around to see who we might assist with our encouragement.


    1. I had a language teacher in high school, Mr. O’Donnell, who took a similar approach to inspiring his students, including me. I remember thinking at the time that I could give that gift to others, for it is the perfect gift: free but yet priceless, one-of-a-kind and easy to return. Thanks for sharing, Kimberly.


  5. Susan

    Aristotle said “Where your talents and the needs of the world cross, there lies your vocation.” Temple Grandin certainly lives in that place of intersect. Thanks for introducing me to this real mover and shaker!


  6. DeeDee

    How amazing that Temple Grandin understands and overcame the ‘challenges’ of her own pattern of “picture” thinking (though it is more that she had the ‘opportunities’ of that type of thinking opened up for her thanks in particular to her high school science teacher). In turn she has developed a detailed understanding of what motivates different types of thinkers (visual, pattern, language…) and is tirelessly encouraging mentors to step forward and motivate young people so they can find their real value in the world. Very inspiring!


  7. Lara

    Comparison has been a deadly trap for many of us! It does seem so silly how we try to be like someone we admire or try not to be like those we despise. The thought of being ourselves is such a foreign concept it seems. How encouraging to be reminded that we are valuable. My improv teacher takes us through a meditation every week where we fill a chalkboard in our mind of all the random thoughts and concerns of the day. We erase the board and the write ” All I need is within me now. I am enough.” It reminds us that the we have something to contribute to every scene. When we look to add beauty, joy and our unique expression and give to others, you cannot fail. May your next scene be a successful one! Have a great day everyone!


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