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Autistic Spectrum Disorder

Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a social communication disorder which impacts on how a person communicates with and relates to other people and the world around them. It is a lifelong developmental disability and is considered a spectrum as it effects all individuals differently. Autism usually diagnosed by a multi-disciplinary team involving a paediatrician, speech and language therapist, specialist teachers, psychiatrist and/or psychologist.


Autistic people have difficulties understanding and relating to other people which impacts on their participation in everyday activities. They often struggle to process sensory information and frequently diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder. This is a condition where the brain has trouble receiving and responding to information that comes through the senses and results in individuals’ being over (or under) sensitive to things in their environment.


Approaches to supporting children with Autism may include:

  • Visual timetables and schedules to support attention and understanding

  • Visual strategies to support expressive communication; e.g. choosing boards, talking mats, communication books

  • Sign language

  • PECS (Picture Exchange Communication System)



Little Voices specialises in working with children of all ages with complex communication needs, including ASD. We have over 10 years of experience in support children with ASD establish functional communication using a communication method which best suits them, working with parents/whanau, ECE settings, and other professionals to to best support them.  

We can offer individual therapy and individualised and targeted training sessions to education settings across Tauranga and the Western Bay of Plenty to support children with ASD and create an ASD friendly environment. Please get in touch if you would like further information on supporting a child with ASD in your care. 

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