Sensory Processing Disorder Resources

What is SPD (Sensory Processing Disorder)?


Sensory processing (also called sensory integration) is the neurological process of the receiving, organizing, and responding to messages from the senses. Typical responses to sensory input will produce appropriate motor and behavioral responses. Successful participation in daily activities, such as driving a car, riding a bike, writing an email, or even eating dinner, require processing sensation or “sensory integration.”

Sensory Processing Disorder (also called sensory integration dysfunction) was discovered by occupational therapist and neuroscientist A. Jean Ayres, PhD in the 1960s. The disorder exists when sensory signals are not organized into appropriate responses. Ayres described this as a neurological “traffic jam” that prevents certain parts of the brain from receiving the information needed to interpret sensory information correctly. A person with SPD is not able to process and respond typically to sensory information, which creates challenges in completing everyday tasks which most of us take for granted. Behavioral problems, anxiety, struggles in school, limited diet, difficulties with learning new motor tasks (tying shoes, riding a bike), and frequent meltdowns are examples of how sensory processing difficulties that may result if the disorder is not treated effectively.

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Why is Play So Important? 

Hear what our Breanne Kearney has to say about it! 


Spielmann, V., & Porter, L. M. (2019). Model of Imposed Adaptation in Childhood Learning Environments—Application to Autism. A precarious game of developmental Jenga. Autism and Developmental Disorders, 17(2), 18-33.

Tavassoli, T., Brandes-Aitken, A., Chu, R., Porter, L., Schoen, S., Miller, L. J., … & Marco, E. J. (2019). Sensory over-responsivity: parent report, direct assessment measures, and neural architecture. Molecular autism, 10(1), 4.



Star Institute for Sensory Processing Disorder


Yoga Calm

S’cool Moves

Brain Gym

Sensory Processing Disorder

The Sensory Processing Disorder Blog

Intro to SPD & Intervention 



Sensational Kids: Hope and Help for Children with Sensory Processing Disorder. Miller, Lucy (2006). Putnam Adult.

The Out-of-Sync Child: Recognizing and Coping with Sensory Processing Disorder, Revised Edition. Kranowitz, Carol (2006). Perigee Trade.

The Resilient Parent: Everyday Wisdom for Life with Your Exceptional Child. Joshi, Mantu (2014). DRT Press.

The Whole-Brain Child. Siegel, Daniel & Bryson, Tina (2011). Random House.

Raising a Sensory Smart Child: The Definitive Handbook for Helping Your Child with Sensory Processing Issues. Biel, Lindsey (2009). Penguin.