Introducing Poppy

This is Poppy. She's four and has been diagnosed as autistic and has severe language delay. Poppy has just started coming to Charnwood five mornings a week. She lives at home with her mom, dad, and older brother. She explores the nursery in a sensory way. She likes to collect objects, particularly bright coloured ones. She has a keen interest in books and concentrates well at things she's chosen to do herself. Poppy can get very distressed at changes she finds difficult. She has preferred areas of the nursery, the soft playroom being a favourite, and she likes the quiet den in the sensory room. Deep touch pressure massage helps with her sensory input problems. She doesn't interact with the other children very much in the setting, but often watches them. With gentle encouragement she's beginning to give eye contact to the staff.

Good for looking at

  • Child study
  • Autistic spectrum disorder
  • Supporting individual needs


  • With the freedom of a well-resourced and accessible outdoor environment, Poppy can explore sensory experiences with her own agency and her pleasure is visible. She already has a range of interests and looks for familiar resources. Do we ensure our areas are clearly presented and made repeatedly available for children like Poppy who may take longer to build confidence in exploring?
  • The practitioner greets Poppy and immediately affirms her interest. “What can you see?”, copying her look. This simple action will build trust and is a foundation for communication.