DIR

definition of DIR: Methodology that is used to help build social interactions with other people. In the name, “D” stands for developmental, “I” stands for individual difference, and “R” stands for relationship-based. This method emphasizes meaningful play and relationship building that is tailored to each child.

LEEP Beyond is Extracurricular Center for Children on the Autism Spectrum

Teaser: 

Mikky Wright, and his son’s DIR/RDI therapist, Lorell Marin were trying to figure out a way to provide after-school and weekend activities for kids with autism.

Body: 

Mikky Wright, and his son’s DIR/RDI therapist, Lorell Marin were trying to figure out a way to provide after-school and weekend activities for kids with autism. In this interview, Jonathan Messinger, talked to Wright about L.E.E.P. Beyond. This 4,000 square foot space just west of downtown Chicago will offer extracurricular social and athletic opportunities for kids with special needs. All L.E.E.P. Beyond staff are occupational therapists including the yoga instructor.

Easter Seals Opens New Pre-School in Illinois for Children with Autism

Teaser: 

Easter Seals in Peoria opened a pre-school for children with autism.

Body: 

Easter Seals in Peoria opened a pre-school for children with autism. The Intensive Therapeutic Autism Program will focus on applied behavior analysis (ABA) and DIR/Floortime. This “bridge” to kindergarten will help kids increase academically, behaviorally, socially, and emotionally. The 3-hour-a-day, 2-day-a-week program is designed to complement current early intervention services. The class team includes an early childhood educator, speech therapist, occupational therapist, a certified ABA therapist, and several aides.

Soaring Eagle Academy Focuses on DIR/Floortime Model for Children with Autism

Teaser: 

Soaring Eagle Academy is the first school in the Midwest to use the Developmental Individual Difference Relationship (DIR) for its teaching model.

Body: 

Soaring Eagle Academy is the first school in the Midwest to use the Developmental Individual Difference Relationship (DIR) for its teaching model. DIR is therapy based on emotional, social, and intellectual capabilities of children on the autism spectrum. Floortime is the basis of DIR, and while it may look like play, it is direct interaction between the child and the parent, therapist, or teacher. Deanna Tyrpak, co-founder of the school, explains, “Every child has a one-on-one assistant that is their floor-time player that engages them in interaction all through the day.” Along with floortime, children are provided speech, art, physical, occupational, and recreational therapists. Currently the school serves children ages 5 through 13, but their goal is to expand to help high school students.

Explaining the Floortime Model for Children with Autism

Teaser: 

Each and every child on the autism spectrum has different social skills, different needs, and different levels of sensory perception.

Body: 

Each and every child on the autism spectrum has different social skills, different needs, and different levels of sensory perception. One method of working with children one-on-one to develop their potential is DIR/Floortime, developed by the late Dr. Stanley Greenspan. The Developmental Individual Difference, Relationship-based Model (DIR/Floortime) is “a systematic way of working with a child to help him climb the developmental ladder; it is the heart of the developmental approach to therapy. It takes a child back to the very first milestone he may have missed and begins the developmental process anew.” Floortime involves teachers, parents, and therapists, and up to eight one-on-one 20 to 30 minute sessions a day. For example, one child loved finding dinosaurs on the computer, but did not like to interact with his classmates. His teacher developed a way to used dinasaurs as a play choice during his math and reading time. This interaction translated into increased interaction with other children.

An Introduction to Stanley Greenspan’s Clinical Thinking: Autism as an Intention Deficit Disorder

DIR therapy may help the parent to understand a child with autism and use that new understanding to build a relationship that may help the child recover from autism.

Balamuth R.  2007.  An Introduction to Stanley Greenspan’s Clinical Thinking: Autism as an Intention Deficit Disorder. Journal of Infant, Child & Adolescent Psychotherapy. 6(3):163-173.

Autism Spectrum Disorders in Early Childhood: An Overview for Practicing Physicians

This review article describes the many treatment options for children with autism.

Carr JE, LeBlanc LA.  2007.  Autism Spectrum Disorders in Early Childhood: An Overview for Practicing Physicians. Primary Care: Clinics in Office Practice. 34(2):343-359.
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