A Falkirk teacher has created a new Scots classroom resource based on a popular children’s book.
Kirsty Crommie (39), from Reddingmuirhead has written teaching notes to accompany ‘Diary o a Wimpy Wean’, a Scots version of Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid bestseller, which has been translated into Scots by writer and poet Thomas Clark.
The project came about after Kirsty read the book and enjoyed it so much that she made contact with the author to discuss the possibility of creating some teaching resources to go along with it for schools across Scotland to use.
She said: “I know that many teachers are using Scots texts as part of a Scots focus in January to tie in with Burns Night and with the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books being so popular I thought a set of resources would probably be useful so I messaged Thomas and he was not aware of anything like that being out there so I decided to put some together myself.
“I am passionate about children’s literature, and I love reading books that have been translated into Scots. This book is such a funny read, and the Scots vocabulary in it is just brilliant so it was really enjoyable to put the resource together.”
Once she had finished creating the paperwork Kirsty shared it with Thomas and also through Twitter and on primary teaching forums which led to it being picked up by the Scottish Language Centre who are now featuring it on their website.
Mum-of-four Kirsty, who teaches a primary three class at Deanburn Primary School in Bo’ness, said she feels privileged to have been involved in such a “rewarding” project.
“There are lots of amazing people out there developing resources, writing in Scots and promoting its usage, and it’s lovely to be a part of that.
“I have always had a strong interest in teaching and learning Scots. It is such an expressive language with so many wonderful words and phrases and I really love reading books in Scots, either for myself, with my own children or in the classroom.
“The Scots language is so rich and diverse and it is an absolute wonderful language to speak and listen to.
“My passion stems right back to when I was at primary school and I used to love learning and reciting Scots poems every January. I love learning Scots poems with my own children and reading books in Scots with them, as well as in the classroom.”
Kirsty says she believes it is important that the Scots language continues to be taught in schools.
“I think it is very important. It is part of our culture and heritage and by studying Scots in schools we are acknowledging that we value that.
“It is also a lot of fun. There are so many brilliantly expressive words and phrases in the Scots language that are great to work with, for example clishmaclaver, tapsalteerie, bahookie!
“The numerous translations of books by Roald Dahl, David Walliams and Julia Donaldson are all fantastic. I also really love The Tale of the Wee Mowdie, We’re Gangin on a Bear Hunt and I absolutely loved the Scots translation of Harry Potter.”
Kirsty said feedback about her resources has been very positive so far.
“I’ve heard from a number of teachers across the country to say they were planning to use it over the course of this month.
“I hope to get some feedback from teachers after they have used it. I hope that it gives teachers an easy way into teaching Scots and it proves to be useful to them.”
As well as teaching, Kirsty is studying part time for a Masters degree in Professional Education and Leadership at Stirling University and also writes reviews of children’s books. For more information visit her blog at www.unicornsandkelpies.home.blog