Jan 28, 2010

Temple Grandin - A gifted visual thinker, who also has autism, featured in HBO movie starring Claire Danes. UPDATE: Video of Claire Danes' acceptance of a Golden Globe for her performance!

Claire Danes won a Golden Globe award for her performance as Temple Grandin in the HBO movie. Here is the video from HuLu of her acceptance speech. Temple Grandin was in the audience.

Original Post

I've worked with young people with autism spectrum disorders for many years as a school psychologist, and the knowledge and experience that Temple has shared through her writings and presentations has enlightened me a great deal.

On February 6th (2010), HBO will present a movie featuring Claire Danes as Temple Grandin, a gifted visual thinker who also has autism. Here is the trailer:

SYNOPSIS from the HBO Movies website:
"Starring Claire Danes, Julia Ormond, Catherine O'Hara and David Strathairn. Temple Grandin paints a picture of a young woman's perseverance and determination while struggling with the isolating challenges of autism at a time when it was still quite unknown. The film chronicles Temple's early diagnosis; her turbulent growth and development during her school years; the enduring support she received from her mother (Ormond), aunt (O'Hara) and her science teacher (Strathairn); and her emergence as a woman with an innate sensitivity and understanding of animal behavior."

"Undaunted by education, social and professional roadblocks, Grandin turned her unique talent into a behavioral tool taht revolutionized the cattle industry and laid the groundwork for her successful career as an author, lecturer and pioneering advocate for autism and autism spectrum disorder education."

"This visually inventive film offers insights into Grandin's world, taking the audience inside her mind with a series of snapshot image that trace her self-perceptions and journey from childhood through young adulthood to the beginning of her career, and beyond."

"Directed by Mick Jackson, with a screenplay by Christopher Monder and William Merritt Johnson, Temple Grandin is based on the books "Emergence" by Temble Grandin and Margaret Scariano and "Thinking in Pictures", by Temple Grandin. The HBO Films presentation is executive produced by Emily Gerson Sains, Gil Bellows, Anthony Edwards and Dante Di Loreto, Paul Lister, Alison Owen; Scott Ferguson produces."

Clare Danes (l); Temple Grandin (r)
2010 Edition of Thinking in Pictures - My Life with Autism (Temple Grandin)
Emergence: Labeled Autistic (Temple Grandin, Margaret M. Scariano)
My Life in Pictures: A coloring book for children about autism

My Temple Grandin Story:
I met Temple Grandin once. She was a speaker at a conference about Autism Spectrum Disorders that was held in Charlotte, N.C.  There was a mix-up, and her transportation to the airport did not arrive. I was standing nearby and offered to drive her to the airport.  What an amazing woman!

During the drive to the airport, Temple noticed that I was wearing a lanyard with my flash drive attached.  She commented that what I had on my flash drive must have been very dear to my heart.  It was almost as if she could read my mind.

She was right.  On that flash drive was a paper I was writing entitled,"Thinking, Learning, and Communicating with Multimedia: Views from a School Psychologist" for a conference I presented that year (2004).    In my paper, I discussed the importance of visual thinking and referenced Temple Grandin's book, Thinking in Pictures. 

Note:  Original cross-posted on the Tech Psych blog.

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