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Gifting Every Child

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What songs, stories, dance steps and seasonal customs should every child in Scotland know? What belongs to them regardless of origin, culture or language? Here is a perfect starting point from which parents, teachers and youth organisations can build their own local collections.

Whit sangs, tales an dauncin culd we gie ilka bairn in Scotlan fir a richt guid handsel? Tae stert oot wi as a smidgin, a wee seed whilk micht graw intae muckle trees o pleisur an wunner. Here’s a wee mindin tae begin wi fir aabody, reidy tae yaise an free tae aa.

Dè na h-òrain, sgeulachdan, dannsaichean, agus cleachdaidhean tradaiseanta nan ràithean, air am bu chòir do gach leanabh no pàiste ann an Alba a bhith eòlach? Dè tha buntainn leotha as bith cò às a tha iad, no dè an cultar no an cànan a th' aca?

Make Scotland a society where every primary child feels welcome and at home, growing in confidence and an outward looking zest for life.  

Curated by storyteller Bea Ferguson, singer Christina Stewart and dancer Mats Melin, this multimedia resource includes text, video and audio and encourages the user to pick and choose which elements are best suited to their situation, with material that can be catered towards different ages to enhance engagement and enjoyment. The resource is broadly targeted towards 6 - 9 year olds but has flexibility on both ends.


The following stories are listed in order of age appropriateness, from young to older.

The Wee Bannock

Lazy Jack

Rashiecoats - English

Rashiecoats - Scots

Whuppity Stoorie - English

Whuppity Stoorie - Scots

The Well at the World's End

Graham of Morphie and the Kelpie

The Selkie Bride

One Wish

Monday, Tuesday

The Tailor in the Church

The Salmon of Knowledge

Bradan an Eòlais

Assipattle and the Stoor Worm

Bride and Angus

Brìde agus Aonghas

Seasonal customs

autumn leaves

In this resource, storyteller and Director of TRACS, Donald Smith, takes us through a range of Scottish and multicultural seasonal customs, suggesting simple yet effective ways one can encourage enjoyment and participation through recognising small changes in the seasons.

A Scottish seasonal calendar


Traditional Gaelic and Scots singer Christina Stewart has selected and recorded a core set of songs in this section of the resource.

Click here to read about the benefits of traditional song from a young age onwards.

Simple singing warm-ups

Ali Bally Bee


Herrin's Heids


Gille Beag o


Brochan Lom


Nam bu leam Fhìn thu


Dream Angus


The Fairy Lullaby


Aiken Drum


Big Ship Sails


Kittie Berdo


The World Must be Coming to an End


Dance steps

There are many varieties of traditional dance alive in Scotland at the moment, and some may seem to be quite distinct from others. However, in this video traditional dance expert Mats Melin demonstrates a few core steps that can be transferred to a variety of more specific styles - a perfect introduction for young children!

Find out more about simple ways to introduce elements of traditional dance to children.

Access more tutorial videos and dance resources from the 'Commonwealth Ceilidh' project.