Aus: Professor Kate Nation writes about the 'Language, Literacy and Learning' Conference held in Perth, 2017

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Aus: Professor Kate Nation writes about the 'Language, Literacy and Learning' Conference held in Perth, 2017

Postby Debbie_Hepplewhite » Wed Apr 05, 2017 9:37 am

I do so wish that I could have attended this Language, Literacy and Learning conference in Perth with its fantastic line-up of speakers held at the end of March 2017.

Kate Nation writes a post for the 'Read Oxford' blog packed full of research information and electronic links to further information: ... perth-2017

Language, Literacy & Learning Conference, Perth 2017

April 4, 2017

Many thanks to Mandy Nayton and colleagues from Australia’s Dyslexia-SPELD Foundation for organising a fantastic conference. Three packed days, more than 500 delegates and 84 speakers, all united by a common theme: what are the factors that underpin children’s language and literacy development and how can this knowledge be used to build effective education for all children?

I was fortunate to have the opportunity to present two talks. In my keynote I talked about reading comprehension and in particular, the oral language foundation that supports reading comprehension and its development. My slides are here. I began by setting out that while reading comprehension is clearly multi-faceted and complex, a big stumbling block for many children is with reading words. Put simply, if a child can’t access language via print, reading comprehension will suffer. That being said, everyone knows that there is much more to reading comprehension than being able to read words. In case anyone needs convincing, consider the case of poor comprehenders, the term used to describe children who appear to read well (they read aloud with age-appropriate levels of accuracy and fluency) but nevertheless struggle to understand what they have read (for review, Nation, 2005). For these children, difficulties with reading comprehension are not a downstream consequence of poor word-level reading. By studying poor comprehenders we can therefore examine the cognitive and linguistic factors that underpin reading comprehension, relatively undisturbed by factors that influence word reading accuracy.

To highlight a few salient points, based on follow-up discussions and questions:

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