What Is DIR®/Floortime?

What Is DIR®/Floortime?

Developmental, Individualised, Relationship-Based (DIR®) Approach (aka Floortime™) offers a developmental approach to intervention for children with special needs in partnership with their parents. Intervention is naturalistic, play-based, child-led and adult-facilitated. Pioneered in the 1980’s by Profectum’s Clinical Director Serena Wieder, PhD, and the late Stanley Greenspan, MD, the model emphasises that a child develops in relationship with an-other. DIR/Floortime is a way of relating to a child in which we recognise and respect the emotional experience and expressions of the child, shown in their actions, ideas, and intentions, and interact in a way that helps the child use their natural emotions with an even greater sense of purpose, building their capacity to engage and communicate, at increasingly complex levels of functional development. The objectives of the DIR® approach is to build healthy foundations for social, emotional, and intellectual capacities rather than focusing on skills and isolated behaviours.

"D" refers to the essential functional emotional developmental levels that every individual must master for healthy emotional and intellectual growth.  These fundamental capacities include joint attention and regulation, engagement across a wide range of emotions, two-way communication, and complex social problem solving.  These in turn underlie the development of symbol formation, language and intelligence. 

"I" refers to individual differences including sensory processing and regulation, the unique physiological, neurological, psychological, communication, motor and sensory processing differences. 

"R" refers to the relationships with caregivers which organises the individual’s experience and support all domains of development. We tailor our affect based interactions to the person’s individual differences and developmental capacities to enable progress in mastering the essential foundations.