Enriching language.
Enriching life!

Communicating: The Heart of Literacy is a public dialogue about communication, literacy, enablement, collaboration, and relational trust. The words of passionate Tasmanians writing on these topics will be hosted here through April and May – with a new blog post by a different author each day.

Share them around.

There is much value in engaging with a large cross-section of view points on important topics. Doing so helps us to understand each other. It helps us to teach each other and learn from each other. It allows us to more clearly see the meaning which we share. And understanding this, in turn, provides us with a platform from which to most respectfully bring change which benefits all of us.

Tune-in here with us regularly. We’ve been astounded at the diverse beauty, wisdom, insight and passions expressed by those who have written for the Communicating: The Heart of Literacy initiative. We are confident you will learn something new through them too.

Many thanks to our fine supporters:

Logic & Literacy

When I was growing up in the 1950s, cars still had carburettors and distributors to supply fuel, air and the spark to make the engine fire. Car tyres had tubes, and country roads were mostly not paved. All of which led to breakdowns being a regular feature of...

Privilege Made Conscious

I grew up in a family of readers and debaters. One of my earliest memories is sitting in nan’s bedroom with nan, mum and I all reading. Years later, living back at nan’s as a young single mother with my daughter, I had a strong sense of déjà vu sitting in nan’s...

Low Literacy & Women

For many of us the idea of literacy is related to a person’s ability to read and write. However, “literacy” as a term and a concept is now being used in broader ways to refer not only the ability to use written language but our ability to gain knowledge, solve...

The Latest from Chatter Matters

(Actually… this is the blog that came before the Communicating: The Heart Of Literacy blog – above. All of the action is happening up there at the moment! We’ll be back to these more ‘regular’ posts after the Communicating: The Heart Of Literacy symposium on Friday 11th May.)

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Just Sentences

Just sentences are about human rights, dignity, amelioration, restoration and redemption – to create safe, fair, just society,

This paper, Just Sentences: Human rights to enable participation and equity for prisoners and all, published in a special edition of the International Journal of Speech Language Pathology by Taylor & Francis Online, discusses our project, Just Sentences, and links language and literacy to human rights and equity.

In celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights this year, 2018, speech pathologists are lifting their voices to call for communication to be recognised as a basic human right. Communication skills are the pillars which fundamentally enable the UDHR’s Article 19: “Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression.”

Chatter Matters Tasmania’s Just Sentences project is honoured to contribute to this call.

“A paradigm shift is needed: use of liberty-deprived time for restoration, healing and equipping of skills for a better life.” Rosie Martin.

Chatter Matters changes lives by building skills for positive communication.

We teach how kind connection with trust and shared language enable positive communication.

We assist with the important attachment between incarcerated parents and their children.

We teach reading and communication skills to men and women in prison and in community.

We show it’s never too early or too late for people to discover the joy of reading and writing.

We build awareness of the power contained within communication skills.

Positive communication is the key to healthy and successful lives.

Communication allows us to share our minds.

It provides us the way to join in.

It is the voice in ‘having a voice’.

And the freedom in ‘freedom of speech’.

And most importantly, communication is the doorway to positive relationships, education, and employment.

“Many members of our community cannot read and write well enough to navigate the activities of daily life.  They cannot read the street signs or fill in forms at the doctor’s surgery. They don’t understand the information on the electoral enrolment form, and are unable to complete the census. They don’t know which bottle is shampoo and which is conditioner; cannot read the menu in a café or the labels on pill bottles; don’t understand the bus timetable; and ignore important letters.

Too often they feel “stupid”; self-esteem around their ankles. Their vocabularies are weak and they can’t express themselves. They often get frustrated and end up taking an oppositional stance toward authority. Or they passively withdraw and make themselves small. They might wear themselves out in hard-labour jobs, which are the only jobs they can get. If they get a job at all. Or they drift into a life of crime.

The consequences of poor communication skills are grave for them. And for society.”

Rosalie Martin, Speech Pathologist, Criminologist and Tasmanian Australian of the Year 2017.

Together we can make a significant difference through communication and literacy

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Chatter Matters Tasmania acknowledges the traditional owners of country and their continuing connection to land, sea and community throughout lutruwita (Tasmania) and Australia. We give our respect to the muwinina people upon whose land our offices stand.