The Developmental, Individual Difference, Relationship-Based Model (also known as the DIR Method or Floortime) is a comprehensive, multi-component intervention used to help children with autism and other developmental disabilities.
The DIR Method is based on the idea that some children have difficulty reaching certain developmental milestones - such as communication and motor skills - but can be helped to meet those milestones through playful, structured interaction with an adult.
The key technique used within the DIR Method is a series of 'Floortime' exercises in which the carer takes an active role in spontaneous and fun activities that are directed by the child's interests and actions.
The DIR Method is usually delivered by parents, helped by a DIR Method consultant, who develops and oversees a programme personalised to the needs of the family, and with input from other professionals as necessary.
There are several programmes (such as The PLAY Project Home Consultation program, Ontario and the MEHRIT program, Ontario) which are based on the DIR Method. There are also a number of other multi-component programmes (such as the Children's Toddler School Program in the US) which incorporate elements of the DIR Method alongside elements from other approaches.
This glossary is designed to explain some of the jargon and gobbledygook used by some people when they talk about autism or research..
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The fact that an intervention is listed in this glossary does not necessarily mean that we agree with its use. Nor does it necessarily mean that there is any scientifically valid or reliable evidence behind it.