Floortime Therapy at ICDL

ICDL's Flagship International DIR Floortime Therapy Center

973-797-9680

5 Regent Street

Suite 508

Livingston, NJ 07039

livingston@icdl.com

The ICDL Therapy Center at Livingston is a revolutionary therapy center using the latest evidence-based techniques to address the core challenges of Autism and other developmental disorders. For many years, Autism and other developmental challenges have been viewed as behavioral disorders. This is simply not correct. We understand so much more about Autism and other developmental challenges now and we know that there is much more we can do to promote development than simply to focus on external behaviors or to simply train children to learn discrete skills. Using a “whole child” approach, we can improve behaviors in a much more meaningful and lasting way by improving a child’s core functioning. The key is to get to the core of the issues and not just to focus on the surface behaviors. Here at ICDL, we use an inside-out philosophy that effectively gets to the core functioning issues. The added bonus is that we do it using a joyful, playful, and respectful process that everyone loves.

ICDL welcomes families from the local area as well as internationally. Please contact us at livingston@icdl.com or call us at 973-797-9680 if you have any questions or would like more information. We look forward to serving you.

Services

Floortime Consultation and Coaching for Parents (In-person or virtually to anywhere in the world)

Floortime Therapy

One to Four Week-Long Intensive Floortime Programs at the ICDL Therapy Center

Parents and children attend the intensive Floortime programs together. These intensive programs often include:

        • Occupational Therapy
        • Speech Therapy
        • Psychotherapy
        • Play Therapy
        • Autism Focused Therapy
        • Family Support
        • Sensory Integration Therapy
        • Aquatics-based Floortime

We serve children, teens, and young adults and/or their parents and caregivers. Most of the children are diagnosed with autism or have other developmental challenges, but the services are for all children whether considered neurotypical or neurodiverse. The Developmental, Individual-differences, and Relationship-based model (DIR®) is our guiding philosophy to all of the therapy provided at the ICDL Therapy Center. We believe every child has incredible potential and through an engaging and respectful process, we can help your child achieve success others may have told you is not possible.

When you bring your child for an intensive Floortime program, our Interdisciplinary team will assess your child from a holistic perspective with a focus on your child’s sensory, motor, and emotional processing systems. From this comprehensive assessment, we develop an “Individual Profile” of your child. This individual profile will help you understand your child from the “inside-out’ so that you can tune into and navigate their emotional world and support their overall development. We help parents move from feeling as if you are constantly managing behaviors to a process where you will know you are promoting your child’s development in a very meaningful way, while having fun with your child.

ICDL at Livingston is...

The first DIR Floortime treatment and research center of its kind that is staffed by top experts in the field from the Interdisciplinary Council on Development and Learning (ICDL). For nearly 30 years ICDL has been a leader in understanding child development and autism. We use the latest evidence-based techniques to address the core challenges of Autism and other developmental disorders.

Here at ICDL, we use an inside-out philosophy that effectively gets to the core functioning issues by using the power of relationships and human connections to promote engagement, communication, positive behaviors, thinking, and learning.

We provide comprehensive interdisciplinary assessments, specialized treatments, parent coaching, and parent support groups, because we believe in providing holistic family-centered care.

Floortime Coaching for Parents

The best way to learn how to implement Floortime with your child is through coaching. We can provide parent coaching in our center and/or to anyone anywhere in the world through our live online platform. The cost is reasonable and the process is very effective. Contact us today to learn more at livingston@icdl.com.

Prices and Insurance Coverage

ICDL is an in-network provider for a growing list of health insurance companies. Please contact us for details on costs and insurance coverage.

Our Philosophy

We believe every individual has the potential to grow and develop. We also understand the important role parents, caregivers, and families have in raising, supporting, and teaching a child with developmental difficulties. Through a DIRFloortime® approach, we help families gain insights into their child’s development and functioning. Through these insights, families then are empowered to take real action to help their child reach his or her fullest potential.

What Makes Floortime Work?

The D.I.R. Floortime approach is based on the fact that emotion and social-emotional experiences (relationships and interactions with others) are critical to the growth of the mind and brain. For many people with developmental challenges such as Autism, social-emotional experiences can be challenging. In Floortime, we get this emotional process going by first “following the child’s lead.” (Please note, this applies to adolescents, young adults, and even adults as well.) Following your child's lead means following his or her interests and strengths that are driven by their emotions.

  • What interests your child?
  • What makes your child feel happy, sad, frustrated, withdrawn, etc.?
  • What makes your child meltdown or tantrum?
  • What struggles does your child experience at home, in school, or out in the community?

Whatever it is, your child's interest is your clue. It is your window into what he or she is feeling and thinking. We can help you learn how to follow your child's lead to help them overcome what may be most difficult or may be holding them back.

American Academy of Pediatrics

In a January, 2020 report by the American Academy of Pediatrics entitled "Identification, Evaluation, and Management of Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder", they stated, "Intervention for young children also may be derived from developmental theory, which is focused on the relationship between the caregiver’s level of responsiveness and the child’s development of social communication.296,318320 Through interaction with others, children learn to communicate and regulate emotions and establish a foundation for increasingly complex thinking and social interaction. Therefore, developmental models designed to promote social development in children with ASD are focused on the relationship between the child with ASD and his or her caregiver through coaching to help increase responsiveness to the adult (ie, the interventionist or parent or caregiver) through imitating, expanding on, or joining into child-initiated play activities. This approach may address core symptoms of ASD, such as joint attention, imitation, and affective social engagement.296,297,321,322

Developmental models for intervention are focused on teaching adults to engage in nondirective interactive strategies to foster interaction and development of communication in the context of play. One such approach is known as DIRFloortime (The Developmental, Individual Differences, and Relationship-Based model). " Click here to view the full report.

We have found that often times Pediatricians are not as familiar with DIRFloortime since it is a newer approach than ABA. The inclusion of Floortime in this report can be very helpful information as you discuss your options with your pediatrician.

Everyday Floortime

Floortime All the Time and Everywhere

Did you know Floortime can be done anywhere? We will help you learn skills that can be used in the house, backyard, supermarket, and at the playground. Also, you do not need a professional in your home for hours on end. This is something you can do at home with your child while engaging in every day events and tasks.

  • Floortime can include everyone - other children, siblings, peers, parents, aunts, uncles, grandparents, teachers, etc.
  • Floortime can be done at any time of the day - after supper, in the bathtub, or cuddling in bed!
  • Floortime can be done in the car, when doing laundry, eating breakfast, getting dressed, and washing the dishes – ALL THE TIME, EVERYWHERE.

Our team of experts will help you challenge and expand your child’s development through a respectful, playful, and joyful process that will keep your child engaged. The key requirement is that you and your child enjoy these moments!s

Special Center Highlights

Free Live Online Mini-Seminars for Parents

THIS WEEK: Following the Child's Lead: What is it? May 28 at 10:00AM US ET. This is a short 45 minute presentation for parents and caregivers followed by questions and answers. Description: You hear the phrase all the time in Floortime - "follow the child's lead..." But what does this actually mean? This presentation will explain Dr. Greenspan's coined phrase and give you practical tips on how to follow your child's lead to help support their social emotional development. Please click here to register for this free session.

NEXT WEEK: Being Partners While Being Parents on June 4 at 7:00PM. This session will focus on how to care for each other as parents and partners as you care for your child(ren).

Free Floortime Consultations for Parents

ICDL is offering up to 2 free virtual (live online) Floortime consultations for parents now through June 30, 2020 (space is limited). This is for parents that are either totally new to Floortime and want to begin to explore it or those that are early in exploring Floortime. Click here to schedule an appointment.

50% Off Floortime Coaching

ICDL offers virtual Floortime consultation and coaching through our therapy center currently. ICDL has mastered the use of online learning and supports and we are extending this service to families at 50% off the usual price now through May 31, 2020. To learn more and schedule an appointment please email livingston@icdl.com.

Free Q&A Sessions for Parents

Jeffrey Guenzel, ICDL's CEO, along with Floortime experts host one-hour live online sessions to simply answer any questions a parent has about ICDL, child development, Floortime, parenting, coping with the COVID-19 health crisis, or any related topic. Click here to sign up.

Our Leadership

Courtney St. Germain, MS, OTR/L, Program Coordinator and Expert DIRFloortime Training Leader

Courtney is an Occupational Therapist who graduated from Brenau University in 2012 with her Master's Degree in Occupational Therapy. She has worked with early intervention, preschool, and school aged children. Her career began when she accepted a position at an outpatient sensory clinic, which placed a large emphasis on motor development and a sensory integrative approach to practice for children with developmental delay, autism, and sensory integration disorder. Courtney utilizes a family-centered approach in order to ensure carryover and maximum knowledge of sensory integrative techniques, oral motor/feeding strategies, and graded activities that promote fine motor development and self-care skills. Her treatment strives to promote age appropriate function and engagement in activities of daily living, play, and social participation. Courtney is certified in DIR Floortime as an Expert Training Leader, Sensory Motor Assessment and Intervention, Therapeutic Listening: Listening with the Whole Body, Picky Eaters vs. Problem Feeders: SOS Approach to Feeding, and Handwriting Without Tears.

Dr. Gil Tippy, Clinical Psychologist and Chief Clinical Advisor. Dr. Gil Tippy is a world-leading expert in developmental approaches to intervention for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). He has over 30 years of experience as a teacher and psychologist and is a founder of the renowned Rebecca School in New York City the founding Co-Head of School and Head of Clinical Services at the Shrub Oak International School. He is a co-author, with Dr. Stanley Greenspan, of “Respecting Autism,” which defines the highly successful use of developmental, individual difference, relationship-based principles of DIRFloortime. He has consulted with special education schools and programs in the U.S. and internationally, and regularly speaks at professional conferences on the subject.

Dr. Gerard Costa, Developmental Psychologist and Clinical Consultant. Dr. Gerard Costa is the founding director of the Center for Autism and Early Childhood Mental Health at Montclair State University. He is a DIRFloortime Expert and Training Leader. He trained directly under Dr. Stanley Greenspan and has been a faculty member at ICDL for many years. Dr. Costa is a recognized expert on autism and early childhood development. He has authored many publications and has trained professionals throughout the United States and in many countries around the world.

Jeffrey Guenzel, Professional Counselor and Executive Director of ICDL. Mr. Jeffrey Guenzel has been the CEO of ICDL since 2013. Before joining ICDL, Mr. Guenzel held key leadership positions in state government and served as an executive director of a very successful not-for-profit. Mr. Guenzel is a professional counselor that has dedicated his career to serving children and families.

In his most recent appointments prior to joining ICDL, Mr. Guenzel was the Deputy Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Children and Families and previously served as the Director of the New Jersey Division of Child Behavioral Health. In these positions, he led many innovative initiatives including restructuring the service delivery system for children with developmental and intellectual disabilities. Prior to his appointments with the State of New Jersey, Mr. Guenzel was the inaugural Executive Director of a not-for-profit agency providing Wraparound care management services for children with complex behavioral health challenges. Under his leadership, the agency became one of the largest Wraparound agencies in the nation gaining him national recognition. As a result, Mr. Guenzel has presented at national conferences, provided technical assistance to developing Wraparound organizations, and has served as an advisor for the National Wraparound Initiative.

As a Professional Counselor, Mr. Guenzel has specialized in children and adolescents. He has worked as a clinician at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey as well as in private practice. Mr. Guenzel earned his B.A. degree in psychology and his M.A. degree in Counseling from Montclair State University. Mr. Guenzel provides ICDL and ICDL Therapy & Training Center with a valuable combination of clinical knowledge and skills coupled with a proven track record of successful leadership. Underpinning these skills is a life-long commitment to serving children and advancing positive interventions that make a difference in the lives of children and their families.

ICDL at Livingston is located at 5 Regent Street, Suite 508, Livingston, NJ 07039