Category Archives: Literacy

The Scottish Children’s Book Awards

The Scottish Children’s Book Awards (formerly Royal Mail Awards) shortlist was announced recently.  Now schools, classes, book groups and individuals can register to take part and vote for their favourite book.

CALL Scotland, based at Moray House School of Education, University of Edinburgh, can provide accessible digital and audio versions of the Scottish Children’s Book Awards shortlist.  The short list for each category is as follows:  

 Early Years (0 – 7 years)

  • Dear Vampa by Ross Collins
  • The Loon on the Moon by Emily Golden
  • Apple Pie ABC by Alison Murray

Younger Readers (8 – 11 years)

  • Zac and the Dream Pirates by Ross MacKenzie
  • There’s a Hamster in my Pocket by Franzeska G Ewart
  • The Case of the London Dragonfish by Joan Lennon

Older Readers (11 – 16 years)

  • Wasted by Nicola Morgan
  • The Blackhope Enigma by Teresa Flavin
  • The Prisoner of the Inquisition by Theresa Breslin 

CALL Scotland can provide the following formats:

  • Accessible digital versions of all shortlisted titles
  • Accessible audio versions (read by a computer voice) of the Older  and Younger  Readers shortlists 
  • Accessible audio versions (Power point with recorded voice) of the Early Years children’s shortlist (Loon on the Moon, Dear Vampa, ApplePie ABC)  

The older and younger reader shortlisted books are available in Adobe PDF and/or Microsoft Reader format. The three early years books are in Adobe PDF and Power point.

If you have pupils with additional support needs, please contact CALL  (  to receive the books in accessible formats.

Please note that you must still register to take part in the awards, enter the review competition, or in order for your pupils to vote for their favourite book!

For more information, help and books go to CALL’s web site at , contact Paul Nisbet , or phone 0131 651 6236.

For more information about CALL, please visit


Whose Town?

Whose Town? is an innovative resource for teaching social studies. A fun and interactive digital resource which brings Edinburgh’s history to life, it has been made available to all Glow users.  It can be found in the Whose Town? Glow Group and accessed from the Glow National Site notice board. The resource is built on the City of Edinburgh’s heritage collections and is linked to the Curriculum for Excellence second, third and fourth levels.

Whose Town? looks at Edinburgh’s and Scotland’s past from 1850s to the 1950s through the eyes of people who lived there. There are 14 real lives to discover – people who lived in Victorian times, at the beginning of the twentieth century, during the Second World War and in the Fifties. Archival material is collected in a digital box and hidden in an attic for pupils to uncover and examine. Each life is captured at a particular point in history, creating a snapshot of their life: a Life in a Box.

Whose Town? features two lives with direct connections to East Lothian. Florence grew up in an affluent Victorian household and enjoyed holidays at the West Pans seaside with her family. Luca Scappaticcio arrived in Scotland from Italy at the turn of the twentieth century and settled in Musselburgh where he established what is now S. Luca’s of Musselburgh.

There are over 450 unique and original documents in digital format for topic and skills based work. Maps, newspaper articles, photographs, objects, documents, video and audio clips and even the bits and bobs that everyone collects are all used to bring the histories of the fourteen real lives to life. Whose Town? also contains a wealth of support materials for teachers from lesson plans to ideas on how to use archival materials in the classroom.   

For more information or to request a free Whose Town? CD contact the Digital Information Team at Central Library in Edinburgh on 0131 242 8047. You’ll also find a wide range of supporting mat

More from the MacWrites

These are the links for the Aberdeenshire materials which work really well with the MacWrites. Thanks to all those at Aberdeenshire Libraries who created the materials and are allowing us to use them.

 Read it write it reference it booklet primary

 Read it write it reference it – teacher’s notes for primary booklet

Read it write it reference it poster

Referencing poster

Referencing Powerpoint

S1-S3 Referencing booklet

S4-S6 Referencing booklet

Webquest Design for Learning



The MacWrite Clan and Literacy Across Learning

To assist you and your students with inquiry-based learning, the school librarians in East Lothian introduce you to the MacWrite Clan. Together they form a research toolkit for students. You can use the whole kit with whole classes or individuals, or use single tools with whole classes or individuals – which ever suits your needs and the learners’ needs best.

There are 2 versions of the MacWrites. One is designed for secondary students, the other for primary students and those secondary students who need additional support.

Each version comes with additional materials to encourage students to become effective researchers. Usually this will be additional copyable resources. Some of these are materials created and used by the school librarians, some are from a pack produced by Aberdeenshire Libraries. You are free to copy and adapt these to suit your requirements. Please acknowledge either East Lothian or Aberdeenshire as the source when you do so. The MacWrites and the Aberdeenshire material are licenced under Creative Commons.

The Primary MacWrites

The Secondary MacWrites

If you want to discuss any of the content please contact any of the six secondary school librarians:

Sally Cochrane, Preston Lodge High; Ian Forshaw, North Berwick High; Anne Johnston, Dunbar Grammar; Moyra Lumsden, Ross High; Bill Plain, Knox Academy; Alison Scott, Musselburgh Grammar.