Dyslexia and dyspraxia sufferer diagnosed aged 19 tells of struggles in new film

Dyslexia and dyspraxia sufferer diagnosed aged 19 tells of struggles in new film

An Oxford graduate who only discovered she had dyslexia and dyspraxia when she started studying Ancient Greek and Latin at university has made a film about being diagnosed with learning difficulties as an adult.

Kaiya Stone, 24, has used animation to bring to life drawings of how she sees words and the world for the short Everything is Going to be K.O.

Directed by King ADZ and produced by Legendary Offspring, the film features a stand-up performance from Stone who shares stories from her childhood including hiding from teachers in the school toilets.

Digital arts company Canvas commissioned the short for its YouTube channel, which is funded by Arts Council England to try and get more young people into the arts.

She has also written, produced and will appear in a stage show with the same title at Theatre Royal Stratford East between January 18 and 20.

Stone said: “I was diagnosed when I was 19-years-old and that’s very different from being diagnosed as a child. I was trying to grapple with the all the information and that’s when I started writing the show.

“Having learning difficulties does not make you stupid. It’s not a lack of intelligence or ability, but it can stop you from fulfilling your potential. I feel I could have done better at school.”

Stone achieved 8 A*s at GCSE, 3 As at A-Level and graduated with a 2:1 degree in classics. She believes she had to work harder than other people to do well academically and could have benefited from being diagnosed earlier.

Dyslexia can cause problems with reading, writing and spelling and up to one in ten people may be affected to some degree, according to the NHS. Dyspraxia is a relatively common disorder affecting motor coordination and can also affect speech.

Stone, a performer and theatre producer, also believes she suffers from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) although she has not been clinically diagnosed with it.

She said: “I prefer the term neurodiversity to learning difficulties. There are advantages. I’m a very visual thinker and that can help creatively. Some architects and engineers with learning difficulties find it helps them visualise a building or something mechanical.”

Source: Standard

Matt Devonshire