How Others See It
People with autism struggle to make sense of the world around them. They have difficulty understanding and communicating with others. Those on the spectrum do not like to socialize. Everyday activities and interactions are strange and difficult. There is a range of difficulty that is experienced by individuals from high functioning to non-communicative, hence the term spectrum.
How We See It
Nothing needs to be 'fixed' about these individuals.
They are BRILLIANT people in their own right.
We are confident that all individuals will be able to reach their true potential, through the use of strategies and learning new methods. What those with autism do require are methods and strategies that they can employ so they can understand and communicate with 'neurotypical' people. Most people who are neurotypical have not been able to communicate with their loved ones on the spectrum in a way that shows an understanding of the world people with autism experience. Ron Davis’ work has been able to provide a road map for individuals on the spectrum to use which enables them to explain their ideas and thoughts, opening up a line of communication between them and those in their lives.
We know that many on the spectrum crave social interaction, but are overwhelmed by the nuances of socialization. They want to be more sociable but are overcome by anxiety and fear, which causes them to withdraw from social settings. It’s not that they don’t want to be sociable – it’s that it is too confusing for them. That’s where the Davis Autism Approach® provides the understanding of the rules of socialization.
There are three phases to the Davis Autism Approach®
Individuation, Identity Development, and Social Integration.
All of which follow the steps that a ‘neurotypical’ person went through in their normal development. By taking the person through the three phases of the program they will be introduced to the pathway of ‘neurotypical’ development.
The client becomes aware of them self as an individual, a separate entity. Consisting of their own individual mind, body and life force. They begin the process by which ‘neurotypical’ individuals gain a sense of self. Often noted during the ‘terrible-twos’ when a child forms their own opinion and challenges the wishes of their parents and those around them. This stage appears to have been missed or is incomplete with those on the autism spectrum. The individual, due to a lack of orientation, is unable to coherently align their senses in coordination with the world they live in. The Davis tools become important for them to acquire this orientation.
Through a series of sequential exercises the client is taken through a process of self discovery. Once the person has individuated and now has a true sense of their own person and understands where they fit within their own body and within their environment they are then able to move on to the next stage of their development.
“There was no sense of being an individual, so there was no ‘me’. There was nothing to have a sense of identity. Without a ‘me’, there was no basis for memory or knowledge.” – Ron Davis
The concept of being an individual is attained. Once this happens, the client needs to add understanding, knowledge, wisdom and experiences to their particular self to create their individual identity.
This occurs once a person has a sense of self, and is then able to ‘attach’ their ideas, opinions, likes and dislikes on. It is the core of who they are as a person – the personality that they will have and develop. Without the core then there is no place for the person’s experiences, knowledge and memories of life to be stored.
"Having come from a void. My sense of the void was not as existing as an individual, but as existing as both nothing and everything at the same time." - Ron Davis, when speaking of his childhood years.
Through clay modelling of the Life Concepts (change, consequence, time, sequence, order, continue, survive, emotion – to name a few), and through experiencing them in their surroundings the individual is able to gain new knowledge about their environment and what role they can have in the world. Their identity development will then continue to grow with each new experience that they encounter; similar to ‘neurotypical’ development. Once this foundation is laid then the individual is ready for the final stages of the program.
Through the mastery of relationship concepts the client comes to understand ‘another’, ‘others’ and the bases of a relationship with other people. At this point individuals are ready to develop social skills and interpersonal relationships. Once again clay modelling is used to present these new ideas to the individual so that they become aware of the ‘rules’ of social interaction. During this stage, we explore models such as ‘others’, ‘trust,’ and ‘relationship’ as well many other concepts relevant to social interaction.
Davis Autism Approach ® is a trademark of Ronald D. Davis. Commercial use of this trademark to identify educational, instructional, or therapeutic services requires licensing by the trade mark owner.