The Fundamentals of the I Matter Framework

All successful journeys start with noticing new details that have been overlooked

The Fundamentals of the I Matter Framework: 
Solid foundations for healthier and happier adult-child and adult-adult relationships

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What is this training about?

What can you do to help the children and adults in your life?  What can you do to help take forward healthier and happier relationships?  What if we could work together better to make a difference using some shared ideas? Discover I Matter Fundamentals training is intended for adults who want to work together more effectively to help young people of all ages and with typical and more complex challenges.  It aims to offer you a map. 

Every adult who lives and works with children knows about those difficult and challenging situations when it is hard to know what to do.  Once equipped with an understanding of the I Matter Framework the decision making in these situations become much easier, as does the team work and the process of finding the way forward..  

The I Matter Learning Journey teaches the theory and theory to practice of a Relationship Health approach. 
The Fundamentals introduces the theory and first theory to practice steps. It includes:
+ Getting Started with the I Matter Model
+ The Fundamentals of the I Matter Framework

The Fundamentals course is a supported small group learning course.  It can be a complement to the Level 1 online study programme.  It is sometimes offered as a stand alone engage programme via members with certifed practitioners.  

What topics are included

The Modules covered include
  • Background - Understanding the need
  • Introducing the I Matter Model
  • Essential Ideas in making sense of stress states
  • Exploring Attachment Relationships
  • Alarm and the Brain
  • The Power of Our Beliefs and Attitudes

What are the learning aims?

At the end of Fundamentals or Level 1 you will be able to:
  • Understand why relationship health and wellbeing are critical to multiple outcomes for adults and children
  • Understand what is meant in I Matter by 'the missing link' or revolving door
  • Describe key pillars of the I Matter Framework and of relationship health
  • Describe what is meant by the fog and by the dynamic loops
  • Describe the use of a simple assessment to identify relationship health needs
  • Identify specific changes you have made and can make to help your relationship with your focus Other
  • Work more effectively to make a difference

Who is the training for?

Training in the I Matter Framework is for you if you want to feel well prepared for supporting healthy relationships with children and other adults through understanding and critical skills.    People join the training to: 

  • Strengthen relationships
  • Understand how to help relationships recover
  • Prepare for relationship health 
  • Learn about the issue of Relationship health in a general fashion

For example:  You might want to:

  • Develop your own understanding
  • Help work or family life feel easier and more enjoyable than it is right now
  • Feel more confident in your role as a parent-carer or educator or partner
  • Feel less overwhelmed
  • Shout less and connect more.
  • Have ideas about what to do in times when you’ve tried everything you can think of and you’re stuck.
  • Want to be able to find the words to say.
  • Get on the same page with a partner or with your colleagues
  • Handle things better with your child or others and are not sure why it always goes babdly

Is the training for professionals or for parents?

I Matter Fundamentals can be for professional training for those who support children and families.  You could be a senior leader, a frontline professional in a health or education, or community field.    Or you could be interested in better insight into personal relationships, with children, or other adults. 

The course is relevant for all relationships but is particularly important for those who support children or adults with additional developmental needs or those who have experienced trauma or other life challenges.

The course is relevant for determined parents and carers who want to know how to help their own child.   However it must be accessed with a recommendation from an I Matter certified practitioner linked to a member organisation

We do not recommend self help learning for anyone currently involved in complex or escalated situations.  Level 1 can be included as part of a clinical intervention only if supported by an I Matter certifed practitioner.  Where there is escalation or complexity the course should be combined with consultations with an I Matter certified practitioner, to assist thinking about a specific child.

How does the Fundamentals training work?

The Fundamentals Course offers a fast paced introduction to the I Matter Framework with new content to work through every week for 4 weeks and you will also have a 14 day email course with some core ideas to reflect upon.   The intention of the first 4 weeks is to introduce you to the core ideas and big picture fast.  The subsequent stages involve consolidation and putting theory into practice.  This can involve a life long process.

The purpose of Fundamentals training is to create opportunities for reflection within a small group learning space.  This can be complemented by work through the Level 1 online course

To get started you must complete a registration of interest step and we then add you to a wait list.  We will contact you as places become available.

How is the training presented?

The training teaches complex concepts using a series of powerful posters with the intent to show how a range of ideas from different research traditions are connected.  The concepts in the posters are taught through recorded video teaching by Dr Cathy Betoin

Who is the trainer?

Dr Cathy Betoin is a highly experienced practising child clinical psychologist and ex-primary teacher.
Cathy has practised for over 30 years in schoolsl child psychology and CAMHS services with children and families experiencing a wide range of challenges

What Exactly is a Community Hub?
A Community Hub is a locality in which professionals in health and education are working together with the community to build the skills and confidence of adults in their own role in the mental health and wellbeing of children and other adults through supporting an I Matter Learning Journey.

We start first with GP's in Primary Care Networks who wish to build stronger links with their local schools.  Once a Primary Care Network and a School have at least 3 senior staff who have completed Level 1 training then they can host an I Matter Link professional or a Trainee Lead Practitioner.  The initial focus is on prevention and less

How can I join the Fundamentals Course?

Participation in the Fundamentals course is by expression of interest and application.   It is required if you wish to progress beyond Level 1 training.  

Extras: How does study support work?

Study support for the Fundamentals and Level 1 can be offered through community membership, small group discussion or 1:1 consultations by certified practitioners listed on our directory.     To join study support you must apply via our additional services link.    At present we are only able to offer services for parents-carers who are linked with member organisations.   We also give priority to professionals linked to a community hub where GP's and schools are working together to share this thinking in their own communities.

Community membership can be joined on a rolling programme
Small group study support membership is offered by certified practitioners
1:1 study support is also offered by certified practitioners

What can you do after Fundamentals Training?

The I Matter Fundamentals training is an educational course only offered to parents and professionals as CPD (continuing professional development) course only.   It is offered to you to help you think about your role and to inform your thinking.   The resources that you will be introduced to you are not for copying or distributing to others.  You can informally discuss your learning with others, but you cannot train others after Fundamentals training.  If you want to become licensed to become a practitioner, then this requires an application, completion of Level 1 and 2 and 3 and a period of supervised practice in offering study support.   

Additional Notes

The I Matter Relationship Health Learning Journey is not intended for those looking for quick tips and fixes for challenging issues with children.  Instead, you will be stepping back to understand what is happening in relationship dynamics at a much deeper level with a focus during this course on your own self-awareness in the key roles that you play

We advise putting time aside to work through the online content over a short period so that you have equipped yourself with the language and concepts.   The content of Level 2 builds on Level 1 and is best progressed soon after Level 1 training.

Summary Details

Engage Course:   Fundamentals of I Matter Framewrk and of Relationship Health 
Preparation:        R
egistration step

Option to apply for Level 1 online course

On completion of the Fundamentals programme alone you can describe yourself as I Matter Aware (Fundamentals only)


PLEASE NOTE: The resources are not included in the Fundamentals training course.  If you wish to review content covered you can register for the Level 1 certificate.  The resources are protected for personal development purposes and are not for copying, distributing or use in professional roles unless you progress to a certified role. The focus of the Fundamentals is on developing your insight and confidence in everyday situations.