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Early Start Denver Model for children with developmental conditions

6 September 2023


Caring for a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or other developmental conditions requires a comprehensive and tailored approach to therapy. The Early Start Denver Model (ESDM) with a skilled behavior therapist is one such approach that has shown remarkable promise in fostering the growth and development of children with ASD and developmental conditions in Australia. In this blog post, we'll delve into the world of ESDM and how it can empower children and their families.

Understanding Autism Spectrum Disorder and Developmental Conditions

ASD and developmental conditions encompass a wide range of neurodevelopmental disorders, each with its own unique characteristics. Children with these conditions may face challenges related to communication, social interaction, sensory sensitivities, and repetitive behaviors. Early intervention is crucial to address these challenges effectively.

Early Start Denver Model (ESDM)

ESDM is an evidence-based early intervention program that integrates a developmental and behavioral approach to therapy for children with ASD and developmental conditions. This holistic model focuses on a child's individual strengths and challenges and aims to promote their social and emotional development. Here's how ESDM, in collaboration with a behavior therapist, can benefit children:

  1. Individualized Assessment: ESDM begins with a comprehensive assessment of the child's developmental profile. This assessment helps in understanding the child's unique needs and tailoring the intervention accordingly.
  2. Play-Based Therapy: ESDM incorporates play-based techniques that engage children in structured and enjoyable activities. These activities are designed to promote communication, social skills, and cognitive development.
  3. Parent Involvement: ESDM recognizes the crucial role of parents in a child's development. Parents are actively involved in therapy sessions and receive guidance on how to support their child's progress at home.
  4. Targeted Goals: ESDM sets clear, achievable goals for each child. These goals are designed to address the child's developmental needs and facilitate progress.
  5. Ongoing Assessment: Continuous assessment and adjustment of the intervention plan ensure that therapy remains effective and aligned with the child's development.

Benefits of ESDM for Children with ASD and Developmental Conditions

The Early Start Denver Model offers a range of benefits for children and their families:

  1. Enhanced Social Skills: ESDM fosters the development of crucial social skills, enabling children to engage with peers and form meaningful connections.
  2. Improved Communication: By focusing on communication development, ESDM helps children express their needs and emotions effectively.
  3. Reduction in Challenging Behaviors: ESDM addresses challenging behaviors by providing children with alternative ways to communicate and express themselves.
  4. Enhanced Cognitive Development: ESDM stimulates cognitive growth through play-based activities that promote problem-solving and critical thinking.
  5. Empowered Families: Parents receive training and guidance in implementing ESDM strategies at home, creating a supportive environment for their child's development.

How SLCN Can Help

SLCN is instrumental in providing ESDM for children with ASD and developmental conditions. We employ experienced behavior therapists who work closely with you to create personalized therapy plans based on your child's unique needs. We provide a nurturing environment where your child can thrive.

At SLCN, we are committed to a compassionate and evidence-based approach to ESDM. Our behavior therapists collaborate with you to ensure therapy aligns with individual goals and fosters progress. We empower you to actively participate in your child's development, creating a strong support system.


The Early Start Denver Model, in collaboration with a skilled behavior therapist, offers a powerful means to empower children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and developmental conditions. By focusing on individual strengths and challenges, fostering social and emotional development, and involving parents in the therapeutic process, ESDM can help children reach their full potential. If you have concerns about your child's development, consider reaching out to a qualified therapist to explore how ESDM can make a transformative impact in their life. Together, we can provide every child with the best possible start on their journey to growth and development.