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what they say
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The course has definitely met all the learning outcomes. It has been an excellent course. I liked how it showed compassion to parents and children. I am making lots of changes! Parent of 2 and 5yr old
With this course I have been able to recognise why and how my focus child becomes overwhelmed, Things have shifted, and she is more often relaxed and regulated. She is now starting to recognise her own behaviour. This will strengthen our relationship and an important aspect of this is that she does not need me to be physically present every time in order to do this. Grandparent - and Teacher who has completed the Intermediate Course
This course has taught me way more than i could have imagined, i love it! Foster Carer
The I Matter model of dealing with the adults before the children is such a useful way to look at things and has turned the dynamics on its head for me. I realised my stress levels are having a huge impact on all of us as a family and learning to change this is starting to make a difference. Parent
I have liked every single aspect of this course. It has given me much more clarity, confidence and strength to help myself and my child. I can only sing its praises in every way. It has made a huge difference to how I see myself, my situation and my children and has given me the tools to be a better parent/coach for my children. It has also helped in other areas of my life such as work.
This course has been so much more than I expected it to be. I have learned so many things that have changed my understanding of myself and of my child. I have worked with many services before this but this has really made the difference. Now I know why I Matter
The registration questionnaire really got me thinking. I realised how isolated I had let myself become and that this was not helping me or my child. I took action the next day and phoned a friend. I also made another follow-up appointment to speak with my GP. Parent
Foundation A and B - Getting Started: Intensive support for challenging behaviour at home
Wow - what a day! Started with both children getting themselves both ready including their ablutions this morning. Amazing, never been done before and they were brilliant. treble thumbs up. Both had a positive day at school. Then off to the school disco.... I was so impressed and so proud. Adopted parent of two children referred due to highly challenging behaviour and complex sibling dynamics
I can't believe what a difference it has made to myself and my child by putting ideas in to practice. We made it through the summer holidays with relatively little conflict so it proves that the ideas work! Thankyou!
2 people on 2 different occasions today told me what lovely children I had! A lady in Aldi said what a good idea it was to get the kids to find things and involve them as they saw other parents so stressed out taking kids shopping. Another lady said she wished there were more parents like me because I was not screaming and shouting at them but they were listening to me. Definitely been a confidence booster! Parent of child with severe challenging behaviour who had experienced complex early trauma
For the first time ever my child is going to bed without a fuss and sleeping through, she is sitting to eat meals at the table and playing independently by herself for short periods. We went to a party and I could not believe the difference.
We are all now recovering from 2 1/2 weeks of illness. My child slept in this morning and yesterday until 7am. It's unheard of. She sounded very proud of herself when she told me that she hadn't woken me up too early. She held my hand walking around the garden centre and sat calmly at the coffee shop while we had a drink. She did really well. She had a bath no fuss and went to bed after a quick run around the living room. But did so without a problem. Amazing!! Parent with severe ME and child with longstanding challenging behaviour
Foundation A - Part 1 workshop and online course 11 parents of children aged 3-7 yrs, Ghyllside school action research 2017
I have done a lot of reading and training, and this course has brought it all together for me - I am finally starting to feel more confident in my parenting
This is great training for foster carers. Social services needs to know about this! Kendal Teaching Assistant and Foster carer
I’ve learned my own self care is very important in having a calm and clear head to manage difficulties with my children. The symptoms and behaviours of stress were very helpful to recognise both in myself and my child. These explained a lot of the behaviours that I have been seeing in my child.
The course has been incredibly helpful and has made me re-examine my parenting skills.
I've learnt that it's our attitudes & behaviours that must change before anything else will improve. It made me think about some of the actions that I do and how to change them
It is good knowing that I'm not alone, or a one-off case and that there is help out there!
this course has taught me way more than i could have imagined, i love it!
Before starting this training, I used to dread every day with my little girl who is 5 years old. She used to winge and cry all day, every day. We have taken a number of active steps that have helped her, but I Matter Training is one of the elements that has helped me to be the parent I always wanted to be with her. The changes in her since last summer are quite dramatic. For the first time, I look forward to being with her, she is coming to me for cuddles and is blossoming in all aspects of her development. Local parent
We have a child on the autistic spectrum and have learned a lot from this course about just how much our own well-being and confidence affects the well-being of our child. It also explained exactly why. This course has given us very clear strategies and practical ideas to turn to so that our parenting is more positive, focussed and creative when challenges arise. Challenges do still arise, but now we know which direction to travel. Our child is doing better in school than we had imagined possible.
The Essentials Course provided short clips which gave keys ideas. Useful having the sentence/ key idea on flip chart. My husband & I returned to the clips & talked over our thoughts - really useful to have a structure to our conversation when we were running out of ways forward. Parents of challenging teenager
I wish every parent could have access to this course as soon, or before they had children, I wish I had seen this years ago
I am the father of a 10 year old boy with ASD who was diagnosed by CAMHS when he was 9 years old. The I Matter Project online courses and support helped my wife and I to find a way out of a darkened room. We knew very little about autism and there is so much about symptoms and very little on practical steps to improve your child and relationship with them. My son is now better able to cope with the results of his ASD and we are better able to support him.
Ivan, London based, July 2015
This course has opened our eyes to a whole different approach to dealing with a complex child like our son. There have been many lightbulb moments for both of us and we now feel more confident and positive with him (and with our other children) than we have for many years. His class teacher has definitely noticed the difference and recently commented that the changes in his behaviour in school have made him 'unrecognisable' in relation to what was happening before*. *Boxhall profile data showed dramatic improvements in this child's emotional security, biddability, ability to attend and work purposefully with others, following parents attendance at 6 week class
Parents of Y4 child
Our child who is on the autistic spectrum, had become increasingly out of control, so much so that we had had to call the police on more than one occasion. I had taken part in a lot of parent training and seen a lot of professionals but nothing had helped me learn what I needed to do in relation to my child's frequent escalations to anger, verbal abuse and insistent demands. Since understanding more about what is happening, I now know how to help contain and manage his rages and intensity. As I have become more confident I have been amazed to see his self-awareness, his sense of humour and his sense of empathy for others developing step by step. In our family we all now use the language of I Matter. We still have off days when it all goes to pieces, but we know now how to get back on track. Parents of a young teenage son with autism
It has been good to step back and take a look at what is happening in our home and why, and understand the why of behaviour of both my child and myself. I am so glad I did this course as I almost didn't. Thank you Louise, Adoptive Parent
I will admit that when I started this programme I expected to have heard it all before because I have done so much of my own research...and attended so much training. However the clarity of this programme has struck me as if for the first time, which is fantastic. Thank you. Sally, Adoptive Mum
From Jan to March this year I completed the I Matter Project Online Foundation Stage Course for those working with children with complex needs, and found it to be an excellent approach to supporting both my adoptive son and myself which has made a real difference. The course brings together in a holistic and systematic way areas like brain development, attachment theory, PACE-based parenting, and cognitive behavioural therapy to name but four, and is underpinned by the belief that in order to work effectively with a child with complex needs, you also need to look after yourself.
Having been sceptical at the start of doing an on-line course dealing with such challenging issues, I was surprised by how powerful and effective the approach has been. In particular I found the following benefits for my son and myself:
1) Helping me to regulate myself better in order to act as a role model for my son.
2) Providing a clear and simple framework for both my son and myself to understand why he finds it hard to regulate himself.
3) Supporting my son to take positive steps to manage his emotions and consequent behaviour.
4) Providing a clear structure for reflection and repair when things get difficult.
I would therefore like to recommend that you and/or your colleagues consider undertaking the course yourself.
"The experience of learning online has been really good and I have been quite surprised by that as I thought I would miss the interaction with other participants more than I have. I appreciated the on-line consultation and was able to work on the things you suggested with my child. I also think that being able to 'try out' my learning with my child as the course has gone along has also really helped make the course have an immediate impact in a way that many courses don't. The time and energy invested by me have been very worthwhile.” Al, Adoptive Dad, Autumn 2014
“I have been able to use lots of the strategies with my daughter who has complex needs. The course has definitely helped”
Parent and Professional
I Matter is wonderfully life-changing, thought provoking and empowering. Some parts of it I have found reassuring, making me realise that I'm doing a pretty good job and am on the right track; the vast majority of it made realise how much there is to learn and how positive it is for all who choose to truly understand it and choose to live it. It really should be accessible to all, it would help so many people and families. I do find a lot of people don't understand the emotional complexities of children and believe children should be and are resilient. They aren't; this explains scientifically why they aren't and how we can improve our understanding and that of others. This will in turn, help our children to learn the skills to look after their well-being and relationships. Positivity all round Parent
“It has definitely helped in relationships with my husband, daughter, sister and mother – green route not red route, how to create the gap, to know when to stop and have a break and to know my husband can become emotionally flooded” Parent
I didn't know I had a choice about whether I got angry or not. Now I understand about my own brain, I realise I can choose. I want to get stronger and be someone that my own children can look up to. Young parent
“I have asked myself the question many times, what is different? Why is this approach working when so many other approaches haven’t? The only answer I can articulate is that we have been empowered as parents to challenge our child's diagnosis/prognosis and we now believe that we can make a difference” Parent
Having completed the earlier I Matter courses we took part in the online I Matter group, ‘Watching Affectionately’ for 4 weeks in May 2015. Before we started we wrote a profile, completed the skills tracker and then each day we logged in to the site and recorded our interactions.
The purpose was to improve the connection between us as parents and our complex child by stepping back, watching and really focussing on the relationship. By logging in each day, it gave us the discipline of concentrating on our interactions with him. The framework gave us as parents the opportunity to meet together at the end of each day and review. It was useful to be part of a group and learn from the way other parents were dealing with challenges. There was a sense that we weren’t alone: other people were working through very similar issues. The curiosity about our co-group members pulled us in to see how they were getting on. We messaged each other with supportive comments.
The process gave us the impetus to focus on 1-1 interactions with our complex child and we each spent more time with him. Doing it for 4 weeks allowed this to become an established pattern. Because we were focussing on them, the intensity of our interactions were enhanced.
At the end of the 4 weeks, we filled in the skills tracker again to see the developments. The biggest improvements we saw were in warmth of connection: really giving him the message that we are on his side. He smiled more, had more sparkly eyes, joked more and accepted time together. This is from a 14 year old boy who had avoided family contact and tended to mostly talk aggressively to us as his parents and to his siblings. We managed to carve out 1-1 time with just him, in a busy family schedule with 3 children. We also felt more confident as parents: setting boundaries in a calm and gentle way and focussing on staying green route.
We really valued being part of this group. It feels like it has strengthened the foundations for a stronger attachment and better relationship with our son. Thank you! Jen and Dave, Parents of son with diagnosed Aspergers syndrome