$53.29 – $575.29

7th National Early Literacy Conference - Books and Bonding Build Brains

Event Information

Share this event

Date and Time



The Esplanade Hotel

46-54 Marine Terrace & Essex St

Fremantle, WA 6160


View Map

Refund Policy

Refund Policy

No Refunds

Event description


Come and join us at our 7th National Early Literacy Conference. If you’re from the city or the country, work in early childhood, library, child and family services, volunteer in a service club, or you’re a strategic planner in your government position. Or if you want to start painting your community REaD, or strengthen your existing PTTR site.
We will have keynote speakers and workshops for all of you!


This event will highlight latest research from Curtin University and the Dyslexia SPELD Foundation (DSF). Find out more here.

STATE RECEPTION - WED 20th March – 5.00 pm

WA State MPs, whose electorates have a PTTR community are hosting a Welcome Reception for Conference delegates at State Parliament.

At this Reception we will also be launching our Paint Australia REaD Book Relay. So don’t miss it!

The Reception is automatically included when you register for either the Three Day or Two Day Package.

CONFERENCE DAY ONE: THURS 21st March 9.00am – 5.15 pm

Keynote Speakers

Colin Pettit

Despite the significant work and good intentions of governments and communities, we are not reducing the number of vulnerable children who remain caught in the trap of disadvantage that often begins before they are born. The Commissioner will outline the work of his office in consulting with thousands of WA children and young people on issues affecting their wellbeing and how the views of the children themselves should be used to inform and challenge current thinking on factors that influence vulnerability.

Colin Pettit is the Commissioner for Children and Young People WA.

He was appointed in November 2015 for a five-year term. Colin has spent his career working to improve the wellbeing of children and young people, particularly in delivering education services and programs to children and young people living in regional and remote areas of the State.

Colin has worked with children, young people, families and communities all over the State as a teacher and then principal in a number of regional schools, before holding the role of Executive Director Regional and Remote Education at the Western Australian Department of Education for three years. Between 2010 and 2015, Colin was the Secretary of Education for the Tasmanian Department of Education. He is a former President of the Primary Principal’s Association of WA and Deputy President of the Australian Primary Principal’s Association.

Bret Hart

“Reading – the magic potion for health and wellbeing. If we could bottle reading as a tonic we would make a fortune in view of its health enhancing properties”

Bret is an Adjunct Clinical Associate Professor at the Medical School at Curtin University.

He is a medical practitioner for over 46 years including the first paediatric registrar to begin a rotation to Derby and subsequently as District Medical Officer in the Kimberley. On returning to Perth he assessed children and students referred from Child and School Nurses. During this time he established the Youth Suicide Prevention Task Force to advocate for action.

After becoming a Fellow of the Australasian Faculty of Public Health Medicine, he established Public Health Units (PHU) in the Gascoyne, Wheatbelt and North Metro Perth where the Unit trialled the use of the Canadian Early Development Index. This ultimately became the Australian Early Development Census repeated nationwide every three years.

He is Chair of the Board of Wellbeing in Schools Australia, is an independent Board Director of Puntukurnu Aboriginal Service and a member of WA Primary Health Alliance’s Clinical Council.

Barbie Bates

Brains, Books and Bonding – the intricate and beautiful dance. This Keynote will explore the intricate and beautiful dance between Brains, Books and Bonding

Barbie is Executive Director of the national charity Paint the Town REaD Ltd.

She has many years experience working in the government and not for profit sectors - working collaboratively with anyone else that wants to!

As a paediatric occupational therapist, she has seen the power of read, talk, sing, rhyme and draw not only to prepare children for learning but also as a way to help parents form and strengthen secure attachments with their babies.

The intricacies and miracles of early brain development have been an inspirational and sobering foundation for her work.

She traces her Aboriginal, convict and Irish needlewoman heritage back to WA, so is excited to be heading west for this Conference.

CONFERENCE Evening Event: Thursday 21 March 6.30pm

A great time to network with delegates from across Australia. And yes, there will be an opportunity to dress in line with the Conference theme.

At the Moores Building. 46 Henry St, Fremantle. A short walk from The Esplanade

CONFERENCE DAY TWO: Friday 22 March 9.00 am – 4.15 pm

Keynote Speaker

Greg Mitchell

Reading the Tea Leaves - how reading to children predicts their future! This fascinating keynote address looks at how a child’s emotional capabilities develop according to how they interact with adults

Greg Mitchell is a father of three children and a grandfather of eight grandchildren and in his spare time he has become an experienced educator, administrator, independent education consultant, workshop presenter, MC, school leadership trainer, master teacher, and teacher mentor.

Greg Mitchell provides practical applications that enhance all aspects of organisational life. He delivers the kind of keynote addresses that makes you laugh, cry, and change your life — no death by PowerPoint here! Mitchell presentations spark engagement and enjoyment as he delivers important messages.


The Conference timetable, including descriptions of workshops can be downloaded here.


Please book your own accommodation. Special Conference rates for The Esplanade Hotel can be accessed here: https://www.rydges.com/private-page/paint-town-read/

Share with friends

Date and Time


The Esplanade Hotel

46-54 Marine Terrace & Essex St

Fremantle, WA 6160


View Map

Refund Policy

No Refunds

Save This Event

Event Saved