Toddlers with Asperger’s Disorder may seem normal in the home. However, once they enter preschool, symptoms of Asperger’s Disorder begin to surface when they fail to initiate play with their peers and seem content to be “in their own world.” They interact better with their teachers than their peers. Odd behaviors of being silly, loud, aggressive, or socially withdrawn are frequently seen in preschool. Hyperactivity, inattention, and emotional outbursts are not surprising and can make distinguishing between Asperger’s Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) difficult.
Transitioning from one activity to another often results in difficulties. Repetitive motor movements may be seen as well. You may observe her excellent memory skills, with the child able to recite dialogue from favorite cartoons and movies. Enthusiasm for collecting certain toys or objects is often seen. Even at this young age, the focus of the collection is more on organizing, counting, or moving the objects rather than playing with them.
Accelerated language development is generally seen and young Asperger’s Disorder children often impress adults as remarkably verbal, bright, and Adult-like in the way they speak. However, they simultaneously have trouble with keeping the volume of their voice appropriate for the situation and having a conversation where the other person can participate, and they fail to use gestures when talking.