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Universal Children’s Day was established by the United Nations in 1954 to encourage understanding between children and promote children’s welfare around the world. It is held on 20 November, the same day the UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child in 1959 and signed the Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1989.

© UNICEF UK Education

These Rights are simplified in a beautiful book produced by Unicef called “For Every Child”.

This beautifully illustrated 40 page paperback book, with a foreword by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, features a drawing by a well-known children’s illustrator.

You can buy copies direct from Unicef.

Click to download a PDF version of For Every Child.

BeatBullying’s mission is to make bullying unacceptable – for everyone, everywhere. For Anti-Bullying Week 2012, everyone is being asked what they are doing to make this happen. There are ideas for what you can do – as a school or a class, as a group or just as an individual – and your Ultimate Mission, should you choose to accept it, is to share the great work you’re doing.Happy Birthday BeatBullying
This Anti-Bullying Week We’re Making Bullying Unacceptable!


They’re back again! This year, Beat Bullying have teamed up with a cool new partner to make their famous blue bands. With the statement of “making bullying unacceptable” inscribed across each wristband, they’re available to order now – with a 10% discount online!

Liz dropping out of a plane

School Resources

From lesson plans and activity packs to assembly presentations and competitions, take on one of missions to make bullying unacceptable.

Liz dropping out of a plane

Solo Missions

Wonder what you can do by yourself to make a difference?  Look no further…

BeatBullying is the UK’s leading bullying prevention charity.

Find out more…


More people have a mobile phone than a toilet?

As amazing as it sounds, it’s true. Help spread the word and donate your voice for Toilet Day 2012. Over 2.5 billion people don’t have a toilet. It’s dangerous, pollutes water sources, spreads disease, and causes thousands of deaths each day. It’s not a cultural issue, it’s an infrastructure one. Together we can change this.

Objectives of International Men’s Day include a focus on men’s and boy’s health, improving gender relations, promoting gender equality, and highlighting positive male role models. It is an occasion for men to celebrate their achievements and contributions, in particular their contributions to community, family, marriage, and child care while highlighting the discrimination against them.

The theme in 2012   | Positive Male Role Models


International Men’s Day is celebrated in over 60 countries of the world. Too many to list. Join us on November 19 in celebrating the contribution men and boys make to those around them, to their family and friends, their work place and the community, the nations and the world.

Anyone is welcome to quote material from the IMD website , as well as free and open use of the logo and access to new posters in the Resource Section.


Road traffic crashes kill nearly 1.3 million people every year and injure or disable as many as 50 million more. They are the leading cause of death among young people aged 15–29 years.

In October 2005, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution which calls for governments to mark the third Sunday in November each year as World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims.

Road Safety in East Lothian

There is one full time Road Safety Officer in East Lothian.

The Road Safety Officer’s efforts are statistically led and the key areas of concern are

Link Young Drivers
 Link Passengers
 Link Pedestrians

DriversYoung Drivers

In East Lothian the casualty age group most prominent in terms of injuries is the 16 – 25 year age group.

As a result of these statistics and to try to prevent further casualties, an educational event called 2mro’s Driver takes place annually. Further school presentations to support this event are available on request by the schools.   Road Safety resources “Your Call” and “Crash Magnets” are also available in secondary schools for use by teaching staff as part of the Curriculum for Excellence.  They are designed to develop safe attitudes towards driving and general road use and can be used for pupils from S1 – S6.  Road Safety Officers also offer safer driving presentations to college and university students.

Road Safety Officers also promote safe driving to newly qualified young drivers through their Young Driver Challenge event.

They will also promote safer driving to the general public through national and local campaigns.  They also offer support and advice to companies on the management of occupational road risk.

For further information on driver safety, please click on the following links:



Drink / Drug Driving


Mobile Phones



Link /

Advanced Driving



Statistics have identified that there is a problem with passenger safety whilst driving in cars, specifically young passengers travelling with young drivers.  Incidents occur due to non-compliance with seatbelt usage, peer pressure and risk taking.
Road Safety Officers address this issue through the initiatives and events mentioned above for young drivers.  Awareness is also raised through supporting local and national campaigns.

Statistics have also identified that there is a problem with all passenger safety whilst travelling in cars or buses, due to lack of seatbelt wearing or when passengers alight from buses.

Road Safety Officers address these issues through supporting local campaigns, P7 transition inputs and organising and running local in-car safety clinics.

For more information on passenger safety, please click on the following links:

Child Car Seats 



Statistics show that both child and adult pedestrians feature in road accidents.

Road Safety Officers offer educational advice and support to staff, parents and pupils throughout the child’s school life.  Specific inputs with child pedestrians are offered at key stages such as:

  • Traffic Trails aimed at P3 pupils.
  • Junior Road Safety Officers (JRSOs) – they cascade Road Safety information to the pupils, parents and staff in the school through notice boards, competitions and assemblies.  JRSOs are normally P6 or P7 pupils.
  • Transition inputs aimed at P7 pupils.

As adult pedestrians are more difficult to reach, Road Safety Officers will identify opportunities to target this group through publicity campaigns, educational inputs and cascading of information from JRSOs and school pupils home to parents and grandparents.  Road Safety Officers also offer inputs and advice at parents information evenings in schools and nurseries.

For more information on pedestrian safety, click on the following links:

Road Safety Scotland


Department for Transport


Secretary-General’s Message for 2012

Building tolerance and understanding is fundamental for the twenty-first century.  In an increasingly globalized world – in which societies are growing more diverse – tolerance is central to living together. 

Yet tolerance is being tested.  In the face of economic and social pressures, some seek to exploit fears and highlight differences to stoke hatred of minorities, immigrants and the disadvantaged.  To counter the rise of ignorance, extremism and hate-based political appeals, the moderate majority must speak up for shared values and against all forms of discrimination.

Our goal must be more than peaceful coexistence.  True tolerance requires the free flow of ideas, quality education for all, respect for human rights, and the sharing of cultures for mutual understanding. As we advance these values, let us draw strength and guidance from the UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity.

Tolerance is both a condition of peace and an engine for creativity and innovation. In our evermore interconnected world, promoting tolerance is the way to build the  harmony we need to address pressing challenges and secure a better future. 

Ban Ki-moon

How Can Intolerance Be Countered?

  1. Fighting intolerance requires law:
    Each Government is responsible for enforcing human rights laws, for banning and punishing hate crimes and discrimination against minorities, whether these are committed by State officials, private organizations or individuals. The State must also ensure equal access to courts, human rights commissioners or ombudsmen, so that people do not take justice into their own hands and resort to violence to settle their disputes.
  2. Fighting intolerance requires education:
    Laws are necessary but not sufficient for countering intolerance in individual attitudes. Intolerance is very often rooted in ignorance and fear: fear of the unknown, of the other, other cultures, nations, religions. Intolerance is also closely linked to an exaggerated sense of self-worth and pride, whether personal, national or religious. These notions are taught and learned at an early age. Therefore, greater emphasis needs to be placed on educating more and better. Greater efforts need to be made to teach children about tolerance and human rights, about other ways of life. Children should be encouraged at home and in school to be open-minded and curious.

    Education is a life-long experience and does not begin or end in school. Endeavours to build tolerance through education will not succeed unless they reach all age groups, and take place everywhere: at home, in schools, in the workplace, in law-enforcement and legal training, and not least in entertainment and on the information highways.

  3. Fighting intolerance requires access to information:
    Intolerance is most dangerous when it is exploited to fulfil the political and territorial ambitions of an individual or groups of individuals. Hatemongers often begin by identifying the public’s tolerance threshold. They then develop fallacious arguments, lie with statistics and manipulate public opinion with misinformation and prejudice. The most efficient way to limit the influence of hatemongers is to develop policies that generate and promote press freedom and press pluralism, in order to allow the public to differentiate between facts and opinions.
  4. Fighting intolerance requires individual awareness:
    Intolerance in a society is the sum-total of the intolerance of its individual members. Bigotry, stereotyping, stigmatizing, insults and racial jokes are examples of individual expressions of intolerance to which some people are subjected daily. Intolerance breeds intolerance. It leaves its victims in pursuit of revenge. In order to fight intolerance individuals should become aware of the link between their behavior and the vicious cycle of mistrust and violence in society. Each one of us should begin by asking: am I a tolerant person? Do I stereotype people? Do I reject those who are different from me? Do I blame my problems on ‘them’?
  5. Fighting intolerance requires local solutions:
    Many people know that tomorrow’s problems will be increasingly global but few realize that solutions to global problems are mainly local, even individual. When confronted with an escalation of intolerance around us, we must not wait for governments and institutions to act alone. We are all part of the solution. We should not feel powerless for we actually posses an enormous capacity to wield power. Nonviolent action is a way of using that power-the power of people. The tools of nonviolent action-putting a group together to confront a problem, to organize a grassroots network, to demonstrate solidarity with victims of intolerance, to discredit hateful propaganda-are available to all those who want to put an end to intolerance, violence and hatred.

David Hume, 1711 – 1776. Edinburgh-born philosopher

“In celebrating World Philosophy Day, UNESCO reaffirms the power of philosophy to change the world, because it can help us to change ourselves – by giving weight to our indignation before injustice, lucidity to ask the right questions, and conviction to defend human dignity.”

Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO
Message on World Philosophy Day
15 November 2012

Theme for 2012: “Future Generations”

World Philosophy Day was introduced in 2002 by UNESCO to honour philosophical reflection in the entire world by opening up free and accessible spaces. Its objective is to encourage the peoples of the world to share their philosophical heritage and to open their minds to new ideas, as well as to inspire a public debate between intellectuals and civil society on the challenges confronting our society.

UNESCO leads World Philosophy Day – but does not own it. It belongs to everyone, everywhere, who cares about philosophy.On this Day of collective exercise in free, reasoned and informed thinking on the major challenges of our time, all of UNESCO’s partners are encouraged to organize various types of activities – philosophical dialogues, debates, conferences, workshops, cultural events and presentations around the general theme of the Day, with the participation of philosophers and scientists from all branches of natural and social sciences, educators, teachers, students, press journalists and other mass media representatives, and the general public.

Scottish Book Trust will be running the first Book Week Scotland, a national celebration of books and reading, from 26th November to 2nd December 2012.

They will work with a wide range of partner organisations, including libraries, schools, museums and workplaces, to deliver a packed programme of free projects and events, bringing Scots of all ages and from all walks of life together to celebrate the pleasures of books and reading.

As part of the celebrations, Scottish Book Trust will be publishing a special book of writing celebrating Scotland‘s favourite places. Written by members of the public and well known authors, thousands of copies of My Favourite Place will be distributed free throughout Scotland during Book Week Scotland. There is still time to submit your entry for possible inclusion in the book.

Sign up for Book Week Scotland updates

Join Book Week Scotland’s mailing list


My Favourite Place



Submit your entry to the My Favourite Place writing project



Girls should kick a straw mattress to attract a future husband, and pour molten wax into water to see what the future holds (or download an App from iTunes).

When: November 30th.
Where: Scotland, Greece, Romania, Russia, Poland, France, Germany and Austria.

Saint Andrew was one of Jesus’ twelve disciples and is most famously the patron saint of Scotland. His feast day November 30th is also Scotland’s official national day.

After Andrew’s death his remains were preserved by the faithful and have had a somewhat eventful history with various body parts now being in different locations around the world. One story goes that St Rule was ordered to take the Saint’s bones to Constantinople but in fact brought them to Scotland, having been warned by an angel in a dream that he must take the Saint’s bones to “the ends of the Earth”. However they arrived, it is known that some of St Andrew’s relics, including a tooth and one of his kneecaps, were being venerated by pilgrims at the town of St Andrews around the 11th century, although no one knows exactly what happened to them. Pope Paul VI presented a portion of St Andrew’s relics to Scotland in 1969 with the words “Saint Peter gives you his brother”, and they now reside at St Mary’s Cathedral in Edinburgh.

Although most commonly associated with Scotland, Saint Andrew is also the patron saint of Greece, Romania, Russia and Constantinople. In Germany and Austria, the Saint’s feast day is celebrated as Andreasnacht (St. Andrew’s Night) with the custom of Andreasgebet (St. Andrew’s Prayer). Among his many responsibilities, St Andrew is the patron Saint of unmarried women and so Andreasnacht is regarded as a time when young girls and unmarried women perform the various folkloric rituals to reveal the identity of their future husband. Pouring molten wax into water is meant to reveal the shape of a girls future in the shape off the wax. Alternatively kicking a straw bed, while reciting the Andreasgebet (St Andrew’s Prayer) is supposed to magically attract the future husband. Another custom is to throw a clog over the shoulder – if it lands pointing to the door, the girl will get married in the same year.

St Andrew’s Day app

St Andrew's Day app

Celebrate St Andrew’s Day with this free iPhone and Android app from Search for events in Scotland and find out what is happening across the rest of the world to celebrate Scotland’s national day.

Get ideas to host your own celebration – including recipes, a whisky tasting guide and a special St Andrew’s Day music playlist. Or why not gen up on your Scottish knowledge with our animated history of St Andrew.

Download it for FREE from the iTunes app store

Download it for FREE from the Android Market

more ideas:

Try this St.Andrew’s Day Quiz

Design your own tartan

Plant a tree – it is National Tree Week

Bake some shortbread

Explore Scotland’s history online

Make your own Lewis Chessmen

What do you serve at a buffet for monkeys?

When: Last Sunday of November.
Where: Lopburi, Thailand.

Twenty chefs from from some of Bangkok’s top hotels prepare two tonnes of grilled sausage, fresh fruit, vegetables, ice cream, milk and jelly for over 1,000 very hairy and somewhat ill mannered guests. The town of Lopburi in Thailand celebrates its Monkey Festival every year laying out a lavish banquet for its local population of Macaque monkeys.

Buffet tables at the impressive San Pra Kan shrine literally groan with the weight of all the food as the hungry monkeys tuck in with great gusto, leaping from table to table snatching food and gulping down drinks like there’s no tomorrow!

The cheeky monkeys have the freedom of the town and often grab bags and food from unsuspecting passers-by, leaping out from buildings, scaling walls and generally wreaking havoc wherever they go. But nobody seems to mind. The locals say they bring good fortune and prosperity to the town (probably mostly in the form of the tourists who come to see their antics!). The feast is therefore a sort of “thank you” to the monkeys.

The annual feast is also in honor of Rama, the hero of the epic legend Ramayana (Rama’s Journey), who rewarded his good friend and ally, Hanuman the Monkey King, with the fiefdom of the town of Lopburi.

(via Somewhere in the world today)


Buy Nothihng Day poster 2011Lock up your wallets and purses, cut up your credit cards and dump the love of your life – shopping.

Saturday November 26th is Buy Nothing Day (UK). It’s a day where you challenge yourself, your family and friends to switch off from shopping and tune into life. The rules are simple, for 24 hours you will detox from shopping and anyone can take part provided they spend a day without spending!

Everything we buy has an impact on the environment, Buy Nothing Day highlights the environmental and ethical consequences of consumerism. The developed countries – only 20% of the world population are consuming over 80% of the earth’s natural resources, causing a disproportionate level of environmental damage, and an unfair distribution of wealth.

More info:

Edinburgh Castle

At a loose end this St Strike Day?!  Check out these great ideas:

Free Entry – St Andrews Day 2011

Edinburgh Castle will be FREE to enter on 30th November 2011
in celebration of St Andrews Day.  Expect long queues though!

Battle of Prestonpans Tapestry Exhibition

Bonnie Prince Charlie’s victory told through embroidery in Prestonpans Town Hall.  Well worth a visit.

12 – 4

Borders Scrap Store

If you feel inspired to do something creative after visiting the tapestry, you could always call into Borders Scrap Store at Fisherrow Centre, South Street, Musselburgh.  The Scrap Store is packed to the rafters with bargain priced yarns and fabrics, cardstock and paper – and all sorts of crafty items.  It is open Wednesdays 9.30 – 4 p.m.


In ancient Peking, in the little known Scottish enclave of Musselburgh, only one boy can help the evil Abanazar find the magic lamp that will make him the most powerful warlock in the world. That boy is Aladdin. However, Aladdin couldn’t care less about such things; he only has eyes for the beautiful Thistle Blossom, the bonniest lass in the land.

Will Aladdin realise the danger that Abanazar poses? And will he be able to save the family steamie? Well, with the help of his silly brother Wishee Washee, a magical flying carpet and the Genie of the Lamp, he might just.

Written and directed by Liam Rudden and produced by Brunton Theatre, the team responsible the highly entertaining productions of Dick McWhittington, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and Sinbad And The Little Mermaid and Mother Goose this is a brand new pantomime for 2011.

2 p.m. Brunton Theatre, Musselburgh

Magic Carpet

Museum of Flight
 10:30 (30 mins)
Cost: Free
Booking: Limited places – sign up on the day at the Information Desk in the Entrance Hall and then meet at the Inckkeith Lighthouse Lens in the Grand Gallery.

The magic carpet introduces little ones to some of the fantastic things in the museum through stories, songs and activities.

Edinburgh’s Christmas

East Princes Street Gardens – a Highland Village-style market selling top of the range food, drink, clothing and jewellery from all over Scotland plus rides and fun for all the family, including the big wheel, carousels and helter skelter, plus gentler rides especially for wee ones.

Mound Square – a range of traditional German crafts, toys, sausages and gluehwein to get you in the festive spirit.

Darren Whitehead Exhibition

Award-winning wildlife artist Darren Woodhead, is back at SOC HQ, Waterston House, Aberlady, with a brand new exhibition “From Tyne to Coast” which runs until Wednesday 25th January 2012 (daily 10am to 4pm).

Flag Heritage Centre

The Athelstaneford site is a 4-star visitor attraction, comprising the Flag Heritage Centre, the Saltire Memorial and the historic Parish Church and graveyard. The Heritage Centre is open daily between 09:00 and 18:00 from April to October – and on St. Andrew’s Day. Admission is free. You can download the Information Leaflet .

St Andrew’s Day app

St Andrew's Day app

Celebrate St Andrew’s Day with this free iPhone and Android app from Search for events in Scotland and find out what is happening across the rest of the world to celebrate Scotland’s national day.

Get ideas to host your own celebration – including recipes, a whisky tasting guide and a special St Andrew’s Day music playlist. Or why not gen up on your Scottish knowledge with our animated history of St Andrew.

Download it for FREE from the iTunes app store

Download it for FREE from the Android Market

Need more ideas:

Try this St.Andrew’s Day Quiz

Design your own tartan

Plant a tree – it is National Tree Week

Bake some shortbread

Explore Scotland’s history online

Make your own Lewis Chessmen