formerly Chatter Matters

Connecting through language, literacy and love.

A young student, pen in hand, was writing a word while making the speech sounds. The Principal was looking on.

d…r…e…n…ch… drench.

This is a very complex word if your phonemic awareness (awareness of the speech sounds) is under-developed. The skills required to analyse the phonemes are complex.

And the student managed that complexity and wrote the word.

And the Principal nearly fell over.

You see, just four weeks earlier, when a speech pathologist began working collaboratively with the teacher in the school, this student could not write the word j… u… g.

The speech pathologist and the educator worked together, each honouring and valuing the specific skill set of the other. And within a few weeks, the literacy skills of all the students in the program improved. Really improved.

Literacy and language learning is NOT simple. It is COMPLEX. It requires skill and expertise. The combination of the knowledge and practices lying within each profession has catalytic potential for rapid, practical  implementation of solutions to Australia’s literacy challenges. When we simplify it, or pick from it certain parts because they appear simple, the learning of it is lessened. When we get it right, Principals nearly fall over.

Through symposiums, workshops, publications and advocacy, Colleagues @ The Heart of Literacy unashamedly broadcasts the potential for language and literacy advancement that lies within collaborations between educators and speech pathologists.

Participation is aimed at principals, other educators, speech pathologists, parents, learners, policy makers and all who have an interest in actively supporting increased literacy levels in Tasmania and Australia. #100PercentLiteracy

The first Colleagues @ The Heart of Literacy event was held in Hobart in 2019. Following is a little selection of the feedback – and the rest can be found here:

“A wonderful insight into how successful collaboration between service providers can be. It would be wonderful to have a professional learning opportunity addressing how and what programs to implement.”

“I have realised the value of collaboration. In order to provide the best possible outcomes for our students, all stakeholders should be allowed to join the discussion. I must be willing to self-reflect…”

“I commit to better support all my students by upskilling myself and collaborating with my Speech Pathologist to develop strategies to improve their functional literacy skills.”



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