Main Content

Get inspired this month by an autism tale

Autism puzzle piece ribbon

My sister-in-law is a Special Needs Teacher, so I was intrigued to view the movie Temple Grandin. It’s about a woman who developed skills to deal with her autism and ended up a professor of animal science and consultant to the livestock industry on animal behavior.

It’s a great movie I would recommend and the DVD is available at the library.  The movie was an interesting look into her personal life. In addition to her other work, she now shares her experience with others as an autism spokesperson.

The Autism Awareness Ribbon echoes the complexity of the autism spectrum. The different colors and shapes represent the diversity of the people and families living with the condition. The brightness of the ribbon signals hope — hope that through increased awareness of autism, and through early intervention and access to appropriate services and supports, people with autism will lead full lives, able to interact with the world on the own terms.

Did you know Jasper County Public Library offers programs specifically for patrons with developmental disabilities? The first Monday of each month at 10 a.m., Magnificent Monday meets in DeMotte (Second Monday when closed on the first Monday.) And the third Monday of each month Magnificent Monday is at 1 p.m. at Rensselaer. Activities are different at each location and change each month.

Wheatfield is also hosting a new social club for "Young Adults on the Spectrum" for teens and twenty-somethings who are out of school and looking for a new network of friends. Times and dates vary so be sure to check our events calendar.

For many families, every month is Autism Awareness Month. But April has been designated as a good time to promote autism awareness, acceptance, and to draw attention to tens of thousands facing an autism diagnosis each year.

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) refers to a group of neurodevelopment disorders characterized by social-interaction difficulties, communication challenges, a tendency to have obsessive interests, and engage in repetitive behaviors. Autism affects daily functioning, however, symptoms and their severity can vary widely.

Early recognition, as well as behavioral, educational, and family therapies may reduce symptoms, and support development and learning. Jasper County Public Library has several autism resources with books and DVDs for all ages including:

The reason I jump: the inner voice of a thirteen-year-old boy with autism

OT for children with autism, special needs & typical (DVD)

The autism playbook for teens: imagination-based mindfulness activities to calm yourself, build independence, & connect with others

Understanding autism: the essential guide for parents

We also have books by and about renowned professor Temple Grandin who is on the spectrum such as Temple Grandin: voice for the voiceless and Temple Grandin: how the girl who loved cows embraced autism and changed the world. There are also DVDs including The way I see it: a personal look at autism & Asperger's and as mentioned above, a movie about her life titled Temple Grandin.

Here are some facts about autism from

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates autism’s prevalence as 1 in 68 children in the United States. This includes 1 in 42 boys and 1 in 189 girls.
  • Certain medical and mental health issues frequently accompany autism. They include gastrointestinal (GI) disorders, seizures, sleep disturbances, attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), anxiety and phobias
  • Around one third of people with autism remain nonverbal.
  • Around one third of people with autism have an intellectual disability.
  • An estimated 50,000 teens with autism become adults – and lose school-based autism services – each year.

For additional information, visit or