On 26th November 2018, our patron, the eloquent, elegant Governor of Tasmania, Her Excellency Professor the Honourable Kate Warner AC, hosted a reflective dialogue symposium at her beautiful vice-regal home. Its purpose was to gather a diverse group to share story and listen deeply on the topics of communicating and collaborating – linking these to literacy development. 

The shared goal that erupted from the group at the end of the day was this – #100PercentLiteracy!

We want to see 100% literacy for Tasmanians.

There is plenty of knowledge about what to do to make this happen across the tabletop with individual learners – children and adults.  

Collaboration is to share this knowledge. And in so doing, to also share and listen with respect and non-judgment, seeking to better understand those deeper meanings which inform our decisions, lives, networks and systems. 

Communicating: The Heart of Literacy is an ongoing public dialogue about communication, language, literacy, collaboration, and relational trust. Read the report of the symposium and the directions emerging from it.

Unfurling information about the flow-on effects, momentum and impact of Communicating: The Heart of Literacy will be published here.

One of these effects was the Colleagues @ The Heart of Literacy seminar in Hobart on Friday June 21st, 2019. Read the feedback of the parents of children with language-literacy challenges, educators and speech pathologists who attended.

And coming up soon, Connecting: The Heart of Literacy is another opportunity generously hosted by Her Excellency to be in day-long reflective dialogue, across diversity, about connection as a basis of the ongoing work to positively change Tasmania’s literacy rates.


Chatter Matters’ work is to transform lives through positive communication skills. Positive communication is the key to healthy and successful living; it is the doorway to positive relationships, education, and employment. Our work is to transform learning to read and write – for those who have struggled – into experiences which are honouring, joyful, hope-filled and successful. So people may then read to learn – according to their choosing.

The skills of communication are the heart of literacy.





Our enormous thanks remains with the fine supporters of Communicating: The Heart of Literacy:

The Collection

Opinions by Tasmanians

A collection of opinions by Tasmanians about the complicated problems of communication and literacy challenges was brought into the world in the weeks before the Communicating: The Heart of Literacy symposium. Its purpose was to help us understand the diversity of views, hopes, insights and opinions within our community. The writings are warm, frank, inspiring and varied. They are filled with yearning and hope. You might not completely agree with them but that is the very point. We might each find opportunity to learn something new, or something about our unconscious biases. The writings will help you see the size of the cloth we must hold, to feel the tension we must bear, if we are to collectively make a difference to Tasmania’s and Australia’s literacy woes.

Generous Tasmanians gave of their time and thoughts to increase the public dialogue about communication, collaboration, language and literacy. Read their work here – or download a copy of the Communicating: The Heart of Literacy Collection below.

One-Minded Vision

I was born in one of Central Africa’s beautiful countries – the Democratic Republic of Congo. I am not only a Congolese-Australian but also a citizen of the world. Because of the many challenges that my fellow Congolese and I were and are still facing, in 2002 I...

Communication for Justice

The purpose of the Communicating: The Heart of Literacy symposium is “to continue to build and enact the collaboration and courage required to positively move Tasmania’s ‘wicked’ literacy problem”. From my experience of over 40 years in the Criminal Justice system...

Healthy Literacy

I’ve got a job for you. I’ll be honest, it’s a big job. Not big in time, big in impact. I’ll outline the job description in a moment but first I want to tell you a few stories. A man and a bed pan. A local man, who we’ll call Ian, walked into his local neighbourhood...

The Intentional Mindset

In his thought-provoking little book On Dialogue, David Bohm suggests that when people engage in productive dialogue, they are not taking instruction, but working together to create something in common. Defined as a process of frank and open discussion around an issue...