Start Here: Introduction and Website Map

Every child can benefit from DIR/Floortime, not just autistic children or those with developmental concerns.

You’re here for the first time! You’re new to DIR/Floortime® and like what you see. You want to relate and communicate with your child in a respectful way. You want to invite your child’s highest potential with an approach that promotes healthy development.

You’ve come to the right place! DIR/Floortime® offers a warm and engaging way of relating and communicating with your child, is relationship-based, respectful, and puts your child at the front and centre of it, rather than his or her behaviour.

DIR/Floortime® is focused on expansion of children’s behaviour rather than suppression

By interacting developmentally with your child (“D“), you can understand how to respect his/her individual differences (“I“) and developmental level through a warm, safe and nurturing relationship (“R“) so your child will have the opportunity to relate, think and communicate. You’ll move from concerns that almost all parents have to growing to appreciate your child for whom (s)he is and relish in the joy of facilitating your child’s development.

You’ll move away from here:

  • “I just want him to say, “Mommy”/”Daddy.”
  • “I don’t think he even cares if I am around.”
  • “He can’t tell me if he is hungry, hurt, or mistreated at school”.
  • “Why does he do that?” “Why is he spinning things?”
  • “Will he get married?”
  • “Who is going to take care of him when I am gone?”

You’ll arrive to acceptance, appreciation, and empowerment here:

  • “I love relating and communicating with my child.”
  • “I love connecting and sharing joy with my child every day.”
  • “I understand and can show others how my child communicates”.
  • “I feel empowered understanding my child’s sensory processing profile.”
  • “I am excited to watch my child’s potential unfold.”
  • “I am honoured to scaffold and facilitate my child’s development.”

We want to share our enthusiasm and everything we’ve learned with other families. You can do Floortime anytime, anywhere. You as parents and caregivers are the best bet for your child’s success! Instead of waiting on funding for sub-optimal services, or depending on costly “interventions” that boast modest gains or put the focus on the wrong thing, let’s do it ourselves! Let’s empower our children! We’ll show you how!

Let’s Start!

Here is your A-to-Z guide to learn how to relate and engage with your child using the Developmental, Individual differences, Relationship-based (DIR) model and Floortime. You’ll be having fun together in no time! Just CLICK ON THE GREEN BUTTONS BELOW to get to each link. Happy viewing!

Introduction to DIR/Floortime

An overview and understanding of what DIR/Floortime is all about.

Hear creator of DIR/Floortime, the late Dr. Stanley Greenspan, and colleague Dr. Serena Wieder discuss the rationale behind the model, a bit of history, and a succinct description of important aspects of the model.

Jake Greenspan describes the Learning Tree model described in his father’s final book which expands on the DIR model.

Read about our experience with selecting an approach to help our autistic son grow and develop, and settling on DIR/Floortime.

Watch the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s coverage of the ground-breaking study at York University in Toronto that showed the changes in the brains of autistic children after receiving a year of DIR/Floortime.

Beginner’s Guide to DIR/Floortime

It’s all about Affect

The “D” in the DIR Model: Development

The “I” in the DIR Model: Individual Differences

The “R” in the DIR model: Relationship-based

Introduction to Floortime

Floortime as a Family Approach

DIR/Floortime as a comprehensive developmental approach

Foundation Academics: What is it?

Guide to Starting DIR/Floortime With Your Child

Implement a DIR/Floortime program for your child: Step 1 is the sensory processing profile

Implement a DIR/Floortime program for your child: Where is your child developmentally?

The nuts and bolts of the Floortime session

The interaction of the Floortime session with the “D”, the “I”, and the “R”

Co-regulation in Floortime: How to interact with a distressed child

Example of a Floortime session

What an ideal DIR/Floortime program looks like

Floortime for First-Timers: A Quickstart Guide

Five Great Floortime Books

How to Overcome Challenges in Floortime

Stumbling blocks in Floortime at FEDC 1: Helpful strategies for shared attention and regulation

Motor planning and sequencing challenges in children with developmental delays

Stumbling blocks in Floortime at FEDC 2: Helpful strategies for engagement and relating

Stumbling blocks in Floortime at FEDC 3: Helpful strategies for purposeful emotional interactions

Stumbling blocks in Floortime at FEDC 4: Helpful strategies for long chains of back-and-forth emotional signalling and shared problem-solving

Stumbling blocks in Floortime at FEDC 5: Helpful strategies for symbolic understanding and creating ideas

Stumbling blocks in Floortime at FEDC 6: Helpful strategies for building bridges between ideas

Barriers to Parents doing DIR/Floortime

Parents Living with Grief About Their Special Needs Child

It’s only as good as the implementation

Developmental growth spurts: What to expect

Floortime Techniques to Help You With Your Child

Podcast with Dr. Andrea Davis about her User’s Guide to the DIR® Model

Slowing down and stretching out interactions

Using Self-Reflection as a Tool in Floortime

Floortime in the car!

Moving Up and Down the Developmental Ladder *PODCAST*

Scaffolding in Floortime: Supporting your Child While Encouraging Development

10 Floortime Tips From Our Visit with Jake Greenspan at The Floortime Center®

What does following the child’s lead really mean?

5 Games to Play with your Child in Floortime

This is 99% of Floortime

The Role of Emotions and Respecting the Child in a Developmental Approach

Emotions (within safe relationships) are key to affecting autism

Respecting the Emotional Experience and Expressions of the Child

A Developmental Approach to Setting Limits

Setting appropriate limits and expectations by respecting where your child is at, developmentally

What is attunement in a developmental approach?

Play is the answer for healthy emotional development

Where is your focus?

Intention in a Developmental Approach

A developmental approach overview with Dr. Ira Glovinsky

Schools Using the DIR Model

Soaring Eagle Academy: a unique Developmental, Individual differences, Relationship-based school

The Rebecca School: Relationships are the Foundation of Learning

Oakwood Academy: Canada’s only DIR school

The Community School: A DIR school for adolescents and young adults

Applying the DIR Model in a Public School

Thinking Goes to School

Process-oriented learning inspires relating, communicating, and thinking

COMING NEXT WEEK: Facilitating process-oriented learning with developmental level in mind: the just-right challenge

Advocacy

DIR/Floortime Addresses Patient-Centered Outcomes, Offers Parent Choice, and is Aligned with Disability Rights

Advocacy for Developmental Approach Therapies

DIR/Floortime: A Parent’s Perspective LIVE PRESENTATION

Please see the website for the Autism Developmental Approach Therapies Association (Autism D.A.T.A.) for advocacy efforts for relationship-based therapies and for parent choice in autism programming.