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  • Cork Autism Conference

Dr. Temple Grandin's 5 Tips To Empower Autistic Individuals

Updated: Jul 27, 2022



1. The importance of Chores

  • Doing chores teaches autistic individuals important skills on doing work for others.  

  • Learning work skills is extremely important and work experiences should start early in a child’s life.

  • Today good work experiences could be: walking dogs, fixing computers, mowing lawns, making PowerPoint presentations, making greeting cards and selling them, or writing for a church or community newsletter.  


2. Early Intervention Improves a Child's Prognosis

  • Start working with your child now. Many scientific studies show that early educational intervention improves a child’s prognosis. 

  • If no services are available, you need to get volunteers to work with your autistic child. 

  • An effective teacher will be able to achieve more language, better turn taking skills, and better social interaction. The child’s brain needs to be kept engaged with the world.


3. Consistency is The Key

  • I cannot over emphasise the importance of consistency.  

  • It is essential for the rules to be consistent at BOTH home and school.

  • Parents and teachers must work together otherwise the autistic person may manipulate the parent against the teacher and vice versa.  

  • Determine if a behaviour problem is caused by pain or sensory over sensitivity.  

The three main behavioural causes of tantrums and other problem behaviours are:

  • Get attention

  • Frustration because communication is difficult

  • Escape from a task 

Each one of these motivators needs to be handled in a different way.  


4. Encourage Creativity

  • Parents, teachers and professionals should strive to encourage a individual’s creativity.

  • To expand your autistic child’s ability, encourage making drawings of things that are related to their fixation.  

  • The autistic person needs to learn how to do drawings that other people will want and appreciate.

  • Autistic children who love Legos should graduate to using real wood working tools when they are 10 to 11 years old. 


5. Ensure Proper Sleep Habits

  • Try simple things first such as making sure an autistic individual gets lots of exercise and reducing sugar in the diet. 

  • Some autistic people sleep better under a heavy weighted blanket.  

  • Have quiet, calming activities that become a routine before bedtime such as reading a story or singing calming songs.  


Each autistic person is an individual. They need to get the right supports and strategies to meet their individual needs.


P.S. Join Dr. Temple Grandin at this year's Online Cork Autism Conference with other international speakers, HERE at a special discounted rate, for a LIMITED time only.

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3 Comments


Frank Sterle
Frank Sterle
Feb 14, 2023

Not being mentally, let alone physically, abused within or by the educational system is definitely a moral right.


Our standard educators should be properly educated on Autism Spectrum Disorder, especially when it comes to preventing the abuse of autistic students by their neurotypical peers and teachers alike.


I feel that not only should all school teachers receive mandatory ASD training, there should also be an inclusion in standard high school curriculum of child-development science that would also teach students about the often-debilitating condition (without being overly complicated).


If nothing else, the curriculum would offer students an idea/clue as to whether they themselves are emotionally/mentally compatible with the immense responsibility and strains of regular, non-ASD-child parenthood.


It would explain to students…


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Justin G. McCarthy
Justin G. McCarthy
Jul 28, 2020

Dr. Grandin, from my reading of your writing I believe you meant to say, "I cannot "over" emphasise the importance of consistency; or I cannot emphasise the importance of consistency "too much." Otherwise, thanks so much. Justin G. McCarthy

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Frank Sterle
Frank Sterle
Feb 14, 2023
Replying to

Those of us who exist with a tumultuous combination of Autism Spectrum Disorder, High Sensitivity and Adverse Childhood Experience trauma, the latter which is in large part due to the ASD and High Sensitivity.


Thus, it would be helpful (at least for me) to have books written about such or similar conditions involving a tumultuous combination of ASD and/or ACE trauma and/or high sensitivity, the latter which seems to have a couple characteristics similar to ASD traits.


I read The Autistic Brain, but it fails to even once mention the real potential for additional challenges created by a reader’s ASD coexisting with thus exacerbated by high sensitivity and/or ACE trauma.


I then read a book on adverse childhood experience trauma…


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