Efforts to help children better understand religious and cultural differences have received a boost as South Lanarkshire Council ensure that Nil by Mouth’s‘ Neeps & Tatties’ resource will be made available to every primary and nursery school within the authority.
‘Neeps & Tatties’ is a project based around the children’s storybook written by Carey Morning and illustrated by Anna York. The book tells the tale of warring vegetable tribes who are brought together by the willingness of their young to build new bridges over old walls. Written in Scots, the book has proved hugely popular right across Scotland with more than 600 schools in all 32 local authorities using it during 2022. The book is accompanied by resources developed by Nil by Mouth which help children explore different faiths and cultures.
The council is donating copies of the book and resources to more than 170 primary schools and nurseries in time for Burns Night on the 25th January. Many schools across Scotland study Scots in the run up to the event and the book provides a way of using the language to discuss wider social issues. During 2022 Nil by Mouth worked in dozens of schools across South Lanarkshire including bringing the Women’s Scottish Cup to Cambuslang and launching a new community partnership with schools in Lanark.
Nil by Mouth Director Dave Scott said:
‘We’ve enjoyed a great relationship with South Lanarkshire Council over the past 15 years and are delighted that it’s making the book available to every one of its primary and nursery schools. Neeps & Tatties is a simple, yet effective, way of helping children explore the things that make us different and also provides them with an opportunity to discuss their own culture and beliefs in class. We’ve seen so many lovely examples of learning as a result of the book including families cooking different types of food with religious or cultural significance and sending it in to class to be shared.
In addition, we will also continue to work with schools right across Lanarkshire through our ‘United Against Division’ programme which teaches the importance of challenging sectarian attitudes and ensuring young people have a full and proper understanding of faiths and beliefs different to their own. This is offered free of charge thanks to support from the Scottish Government and we are looking forward to bringing our message of change to communities right across the region over the next twelve months.’