In this section you can find information about the effect of autism on areas of childhood development and practical strategies to deal with many of the issues that arise for children with autism in this age group. The files from this section are available for download and printing in PDF format. You will need ADOBE PDF reader.

Further information on important services and day to day coping and is available in the My Family section.

Primary Years Behaviour

Remain calm and remind yourself that the child’s behaviour is an attempt at communication; not just being naughty or difficult for the sake of it. Children with high functioning autism are rarely manipulative, lying or scheming. The child may become quite upset and abandon a task completely if not succeeding. Give the child lots of...


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Primary Years Cognitive Skills

Jack just can’t concentrate in class for very long, he is so easily distracted by trivial things.” Children with autism can be easily distracted. They may find it hard to concentrate when they are disturbed by background noise, flickering lights or movement of other children. Classrooms that are very bright and colourful can overload a...


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Primary Years Communication

Mark won’t look me in the eye, I can’t tell if he is listening to me or not.” Children with autism may never directly look their parents or teacher in the eye, this is because: Children with autism may feel very uncomfortable looking directly at someone when speaking or being spoken to.  Some have commented...


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Primary Years Coping With Bullying

My son is getting bullied and teased at school. What can I do? Bullying is repeated intentional intimidating behaviour that causes distress, hurt or undue pressure. The target is usually seen as weaker or more vulnerable than the perpetrator. Verbal: Threats, name calling, put downs Physical: Physical violence or threats of violence Social: Deliberately excluding...


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Primary Years Obsession & Inflexibility

“If we drive to school a different way Peter gets upset and starts having a meltdown. Why does this happen?” Children with autism are rigid in their way of thinking so they rely on routines Routine helps a child with autism make sense of the world. They like to know what is going to happen...


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Primary Years Schooling Options

“How can I help my child cope with the transition to high school?” Transition to secondary school can be a very anxious and stressful time. With good preparation and information, this time of great change and growth can be made a little easier. A majority of young people with high functioning autism now attend their local...


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Primary Years Sensory

“When our dog barks Jason sticks his fingers in his ears and starts making noises, why does he do that?” Noise overload is a huge issue for children with autism. Children with autism often have an under or over reaction to sensory information. This includes auditory information – certain noises only or too much noise....


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Primary Years Social Skills

“I have been told that social stories can help with my son’s behaviour.  What is a social story and how do you make one?” Social stories are short stories specifically written to help the child with autism develop social understanding, and learn how to interact appropriately with others. They also help the child to consider...


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