Katie Bairdie Revealed as Favourite Scottish Nursery Rhyme

Toddlers use a tablet with parents
Category: Press Releases

Scottish Book Trust, the national charity changing lives through reading and writing, today reveals that Katie Bairdie is the most popular traditional Scottish nursery rhyme. Katie Bairdie has been listened to over 16,400 times on the Bookbug app, closely followed by another Scots nursery rhyme, Ally Bally, which has been listened to over 15,700 times.

The Bookbug app, which is free to download, hosts songs and rhymes that can be shared with families and carers. Over 400,000 songs and rhymes have been listened to in the app since launch at the end of January. These are also accessible through Scottish Book Trust’s website.

As part of Bookbug Week, the annual celebration of Scotland’s national book-gifting programme and song and rhyme sessions, Scottish Book Trust can reveal the top five traditional nursery rhymes in Scotland are:


  1. Pop A Little Pancake
  2. Katie Bairdie
  3. Ally Bally
  4. Wheels on the Bus
  5. Five Little Monkeys

Modern nursery rhymes are also popular: Sprog Rock’s Nursery Rap is the second most listened to song on the Bookbug App, with over 17,800 plays.

For Bookbug Week, 40 new songs have been added to the Bookbug App, including The Jeely Piece Song, If You’re Happy and You Know It and Tiny Tim the Turtle. New Gaelic content has also been added, including Halò a h-uile duine, Ciamar a tha thu? and Sùilean, Cluasan, Sròn is Beul. As well as music, the app provides lyrics so families can sing along with the songs and rhymes, and some also have videos demonstrating actions.

Sharing stories, songs and rhymes with children has many wonderful benefits, including developing their language skills, allowing time to cuddle and bond, and encourages relaxation. Scottish Book Trust offers free song & rhyme Bookbug Sessions across Scotland, which take place all year round. You can find your local session on the Bookbug app or on Scottish Book Trust’s website.

The Bookbug app has recently been shortlisted for the Demonstrating Digital category in the Scottish Charity Awards, and has also been recognised as a finalist for the Digital Leaders 100 Digital Charity of the Year.


Marc Lambert, CEO of Scottish Book Trust, said:

“We’re delighted that the Bookbug app has been so popular with parents and carers, as demonstrated by over 12,000 downloads since January. Integrating songs and rhymes into your daily routine is a fantastic way to bond with your child, and also helps develop language skills. We hope parents and carers across Scotland will enjoy the new content on the Bookbug app, whether in English, Scots or Gaelic.”


Funded by the Scottish Government and Creative Scotland, Bookbug is Scottish Book Trust’s Early Years Programme. The Bookbug programme encourages mums, dads and carers to sing and share stories with their children from birth. It gives every child in Scotland four free bags of books in their first 5 years, gifting 800,000 books every year. Bookbug also runs regular free story, song and rhyme events in libraries, shopping centres and other community venues which attracted audiences of over 660,000 parents and children in 2017-18


Notes to Editors

For media enquiries please contact Keara Donnachie, PR and Marketing Manager at Scottish Book Trust, on Keara.Donnachie@scottishbooktrust.com or 0131 524 0184.


Scottish Book Trust

Scottish Book Trust is a national charity changing lives through reading and writing. We inspire and support the people of Scotland to read and write for pleasure through programmes and outreach work that include:

  • Gifting books to every child in Scotland to ensure families of all backgrounds can share the joy of books at home.
  • Working with teachers to inspire children to develop a love of reading, creating innovative classroom activities, book awards and author events.
  • Supporting Scotland’s diverse writing community with our training, awards and writing opportunities.
  • Funding a range of author events for the public to enjoy and promoting Scottish writing to people worldwide.

In addition to the funding we receive from the Scottish Government and Creative Scotland, we need the constant support of trusts and foundations, corporate sponsors and individual donors.

www.scottishbooktrust.com   @scottishbktrust   www.facebook.com/scottishbktrust




The Bookbug programme is managed by Scottish Book Trust and run in partnership with libraries, health professionals and nurseries. The programme benefits from sponsorship from children’s publishers and central funding from the Scottish Government through a grant from the Children and Families Directorate. Bookbug also receives support from Local Authorities, Library Services and Health Boards through the provision of local staff time and logistics solutions.


Bookbug Sessions are run by local libraries and community groups. Over 24,000 Bookbug Sessions happen across Scotland every year. These are free, fun-filled story and rhyme sessions for babies to four-year-olds, attended by thousands of parents and children a year. Details of local Bookbug Sessions can be found here.


Bookbug’s targeted outreach programme, Bookbug for the Home, trains Early Years practitioners to give support to families on a one-to-one basis. Since 2012, Bookbug for the Home has helped over 14,000 families, encouraging parents to do more talking, book sharing and singing with their children.


Scottish Book Trust also supports the delivery of Dolly Parton Imagination Library in Scotland (free books delivered monthly to every Looked After Child aged 0-5).


Scottish Book Trust recently launched a new Bookbug app for parents/carers and children to enjoy together. The free app is designed to complement Bookbug Bags and Bookbug Sessions, offering greater accessibility to rhymes and songs to families across Scotland. The app can be downloaded from the App Store or Google Play.


www.scottishbooktrust.com/bookbug       @Bookbug_SBT        https://www.facebook.com/BookbugSBT/


Creative Scotland

Scottish Book Trust is supported by Creative Scotland through Regular Funding. Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here. We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life. We distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery. For further information about Creative Scotland please visit www.creativescotland.com  Follow us @creativescots and www.facebook.com/CreativeScotland