Author Archives: lauramcginlay

Play Based Approach to Learning Book Club

For staff interested in learning more about a play based approach to learning, we are starting a Book Club every second Thursday from 3pm to 4pm starting on Thursday 21st of May.  We will be working through Realising the Ambition.  On Thursday, James Mctaggart will be giving us a short introduction and we will talk about how our book club will work.  If you would like to join us, you can access the book club via Google meet on: Join with Google Meet

Lockdown Unlocked – Covid Poetry and Prose

Poetry and Prose reflections on Covid-19

Writing can be a cathartic experience for people who have gone through a worrying time. Our children will need to talk about it and share their experiences and feelings, so that they can make sense of what has happened.

We hope to put a book together of poems and prose from children and adults in our Highland Schools, as a reminder of the history that is in the making.

If you have pieces of written texts of any genre, which you wish to share over the next few months, please send them to: or and we will include it in our Google book.

Please edit the work before submitting it.

If you class enjoy a competition, why not submit your entry to this competition?

Literacy Lockdown Update – Training Links

It’s been a while since we last posted here!

Google Classroom has become to the bread and butter of our teaching day (for just now!) and we know that there are a plethora of resources already being shared so we have decided to gather all the resources from our daily 1pm training in one space! All literacy resources to accompany the training can be accessed by clicking the links below

If you don’t already know, the Literacy team is running daily training sessions at 1pm via Google Meet. The schedule for the week ahead can be accessed at

All school staff are welcome! Look forward to seeing you there!

Literacy Challenge 2020 for Families During School Closures

We have created some 2020 Literacy Challenge grids for pupils (and families) to complete at home.

Feel free to use these as they are or edit to suit you class. We hope you find them useful!

There are three challenge grids – Learning Around the House (Early), First and Second Level.

In addition, please see links below for learning at home ideas at both Primary and Secondary level.

Building a Reading Culture in your Secondary School Webinar – 9th March 2020 at 4.30pm

If you want to get your whole school reading, sign up for the ‘Building a Reading Culture in your Secondary School’ webinar! This session will outline the features of a reading culture, the programmes delivered by Scottish Book Trust to help you foster this culture in your school and practical examples to inspire you to get started, wherever you are on your reading journey.

In feedback from previous webinar attendees, 100% said they would recommend Scottish Book Trust webinars to a colleague!

All staff working in a secondary school setting in Highland are welcome.

The webinar is free to access!

The webinar will take place on the 9th March 2020 at 4.30pm.

Sign up here –

On completion of the course, participants will:

·          Be familiar with the elements which contribute to building a reading culture in school

·          Have practical ideas to implement in their own school to create a reading culture

·         Know about Scottish Book Trust programmes which they can get involved in to encourage reading for pleasure

·         Know about the range of learning resources available to help them and where to find these

Outline Programme

·       What is a reading culture

·       Ideas to help build a reading culture

·       How programmes run by Scottish Book Trust can help build a reading culture

·      Time for questions

Bookbug Shared Practice Event – Wednesday 4th March

Wednesday 4 March 2020

10am – 2:00pm (Registration from 9:30am) Canal Park, Clubhouse, Inverness IV3 5SS

Calling all Bookbug practitioners!

You’re invited to a half-day Bookbug Shared Practice Event in Inverness, where you can find out more about how Bookbug is being used by a whole range of practitioners in communities and family homes throughout your area and beyond. Share ideas, hear about innovative projects, get inspired and recharge your Bookbug battery!

This event is open to everyone who includes Bookbug in their work or is interested in hearing more about how they can be involved in Bookbug in their local area, whether you gift the Bookbug bags, lead Bookbug Sessions, use Bookbug in family homes, or have attended a Bookbug training course in the past.

The day will include –

  • Updates from the Bookbug Team
  • Presentations from local practitioners
  • Ideas sharing sessions
  • A networking lunch

The option to attend Music and Early Literacy OR Bookbug Explorer Bag training in the afternoon (add an additional registration ticket for this)

Have something to share?

If you have some Bookbug related practice that you would be willing to share through a presentation, poster or display, please contact let us know when you register.

Places at this event are funded by Scottish Book Trust and there is no cost for participants.

Click on the following link to register online:

Having problems signing up online? Call 0131 524 0179 or email

Wee MacNessie Book Launch – Inverness Town House – Saturday 25th January

On Saturday 25th January, local author Pauline Mackay is launching her latest Wee MacNessie story in the Inverness Town House starting at 3pm. ‘Wee MacNessie and the Lion Dance’ celebrates Scottish and Chinese culture.

It’s a FREE event! Local children will be reading and singing in Mandarin and there will be a guest appearance from Wee MacNessie himself!