Didactic materials. Scottish Slang, vocabulary exercises

Highlight the Unknown

1. A Visit to Granny’s
I was visiting my granny over the weekend. She lives in a bonnie cottage up in the Highlands. As we were having tea, she told me she needed to pop into town later to get the messages. I offered to go for her, and she handed me a list with items like tatties, backy, and some fizzy juice.

2. At the Pub
Last night at the local pub was a laugh! James was completely off his trolley after just a couple of bevies. He started telling tales that were absolute bum’s out the windy. I told him to hodge his weest and just enjoy his drink.

3. New Year’s Celebration
Hogmanay in Scotland is an experience like no other. We started the evening with some traditional music and dance. As the night wore on, some of my mates got a wee bit too steaming. But when someone shouted, «God yourself!» everyone joined in the festive spirit, making it a night to remember.

4. School Days
Back in my school days in Edinburgh, we’d often have lunch at this small eatery near the school. They had the best scran. I’d often order mince and tatties, while my best mate, Callum, loved their sandwiches. One day, after eating, Callum looked peely wally, and I joked that maybe he had too much airbage from the soda!

5. A Day at the Park
The sun was shining, making it a perfect day to relax at the park. Kids were playing, and there was a family having a picnic nearby. I overheard one of the kids say, «Pass the jobby!» and I had to stifle my laughter. Turns out, they had named their sandwich that, unaware of the slang meaning.

Students can use these passages to highlight or underline the Scottish slang terms they are unfamiliar with.


Set 1:
a) My dad still enjoys a bit of , especially with his old friends.
b) If you think I’m going to believe that, then your
c) The mountains and lakes make for such a view.
d) After the match, the players went out for a
to celebrate.

Word Bank: bevy, backy, bum’s out the windy, bonnie

Set 2:
a) We can’t start the dinner without ; it’s the main ingredient for tonight’s dish!
b) You look a bit
today, did you sleep well?
c) He drank so much; he was absolutely by midnight.
d) I have to go to the store later to pick up the
for mum.

Word Bank: tatties, peely wally, steaming, messages

Set 3:
a) During Hogmanay, it’s customary to offer neighbors whisky and a piece of .
b) He ate that spicy curry and immediately let out an
c) That story of his is complete ; I wouldn’t believe a word.
d) When I was thirsty, I asked for a can of

Word Bank: coal, airbage, bum’s out the windy, fizzy juice

Set 4:
a) You’re such a for forgetting her birthday!
b) My grandma’s special recipe includes mince and
c) Every time I see him, he’s always eating some sort of .
d) It’s funny how they call it a
when it’s just a shopping cart.

Word Bank: ball bag, tatties, scran, trolley

Set 5:
a) Sometimes, when I don’t know the answer, I just say «
b) If you’ve had too much to drink, people might say you’re
c) Don’t be fooled by its sweet name; a is not something you’d want to step on.
d) My friend’s compliments were so over the top, I thought he was being

Word Bank: I dinnae ken, off your trolley, jobby, sarcastic

Students can use the word bank to fill in the gaps in the sentences with the appropriate Scottish slang term.

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