Temple Grandin: How the Girl Who Loved Cows Embraced Autism and Changed the World

by Sy Montgomery

As a child in the 1950s, Temple Grandin was fortunate to have a mother who was a... read more

As a child in the 1950s, Temple Grandin was fortunate to have a mother who was a fierce advocate at a time when even the term “autism” was unknown. But Temple faced difficulties, from a father who wanted to institutionalize her to social challenges, especially during her early teen years. She later attended a unique boarding school, although even there the school psychologist didn’t understand the “squeeze machine” she designed that gave her a sense of calm and peace. Grandin has gone on to a career as a scientist and engineer, and she attributes her success to her autism: The way her brain functions is why she’s succeeded in her work, which has revolutionized the food industry when it comes to the humane treatment of animals raised and slaughtered for food. She has strong empathy with animals, especially cows, so that she understands when they are fearful, and she is such a visual thinker that she has been able to conceptualize effective solutions to eliminate that fear. Sy Montgomery strikes just the right balance between telling Grandin’s personal story and describing her fascinating work in this compelling, accessible, and inspiring account in which Temple herself is a vibrant presence. (Age 10 and older)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2013

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