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The Connection Formula®
The Connection Formula® , created by Nancy Swanberg, is the keystone of our approach. Here's how it works. To make socialization accessible we first use accommodations to connect. At the outset, social expectations are made clear to the children. This is done not out of a rigid sense of strictness, but rather to make the environment predictable and stress-free. The children know what to expect when they enter the room, where to sit during activities, even how to leave the room when the session is over. Within this structure we are quite flexible, always looking for "shared moments" and reciprocal interactions. As clear communication is established and as the child/teen feels safe and understood then emotional and conceptual concerns can be addressed in a caring and supportive manner.
Neurotypical communication styles and parenting approaches may not be well received by people on the spectrum. They may be left feeling lost and confused and not know how to communicate that in a way others understand. This disorientation can lead to anxiety and depression. The Connection Formula® uses a variety of techniques and accommodations to counter-balance the confusion and ameliorate symptoms. Techniques include:
Facts Before Feelings
Connect Before Correct
The Running Commentary Technique
The True/ False Game
Visual Problem Scales
Find Connecting Logic
Organizing the Environment
What's the bigger problem?
Filling Concept Gaps
Bridging the Compassion Gap