Kylie's Story

Behaviour, Learning, Self-Control

Kylie’s family discovered the Sunflower Trust when researching learning difficulties on the internet as they had concerns about their daughter. They contacted Sunflower to see if we could help with Kylie’s challenges.

Kylie had been adopted as a toddler and had a complicated background. She had been born addicted to heroin and had spent her first 6 weeks in hospital undergoing a withdrawal process. She recovered well and there had been no concerns about her overall development as she grew up. Her parents were taking a very nurturing and gentle approach to raising their children and were home educating Kylie and her younger brother. Kylie was very bright but at 8 years old was a little later than normal learning to read and she was also struggling with numeracy and spelling. She found it difficult to concentrate for any length of time and was exhausted if asked to sit and do any kind of work, even fun things like colouring or craft activities. She also muddled up words frequently and had trouble hearing sounds in words. However, her most recent behaviour changes were what really triggered her parents’ concerns as, in addition to her learning difficulties she was becoming uncooperative, disobedient and oppositional – not the sunny, cheerful child they were used to at all.

As the pre-programme assessment identified, there were many areas of Kylie’s health that required improvement - particularly her musculoskeletal structure which had a very poor score. So much so, that our Sunflower Practitioner commented that he rarely sees a child who is so structurally unbalanced. He spent the first two appointments carrying out gentle adjustments to enable her body to move, reorganise and react in a normal way.

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Kylie progressed at her own pace through the remainder of the Sunflower Programme, having sessions which covered writing, spelling as well as positivity and confidence and the results speak for themselves.

Her mother reported, “Some changes were immediate, firstly it felt like she had ‘arrived’ in the world with us, she seemed more in touch with the time of day/day of the week, she knew what was coming next and what had been before. Before this she had been like a little fairy wafting along for the ride - happy to be there but with things washing over her! It was as if a series of switches were being flicked on. After one session where we worked on spelling, something quite miraculous happened. Kylie got up in the morning and proceeded to spend almost an entire day writing, something she had NEVER done before. She worked methodically through a book, copying words and making lists in an ordered fashion. It wasn’t just the actual writing it was the hours she spent on it and the concentration! She did this every morning for 5 days in a row. As time went on she seemed more able to able to apply herself to settle down to work better, had better sustained concentration, her reading came on and she was more willing to attempt tasks off her own back, without being coerced.

With the practitioner’s help, we tuned in to how Kylie learned best, finding that a multi-sensory approach worked best for her, for instance, using food to do sums - in essence, ‘eating her maths’! Also, learning things to song seemed to help the information ‘stick’ better”.

Kylie’s self-confidence also improved as did her behaviour and reading. In addition, Kylie had always suffered from prickly heat which her parents report has now been resolved.

Kylie’s mother has been so pleased with her daughter’s progress that the family have decided that Kylie’s brother should go through the Sunflower Programme to ensure that he, too, can be the best that he could be.

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