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Learn fun things with Speak Census

The census is a landmark event that normally happens every ten years. It plays a crucial role in counting the population, as well as sharing information that helps government plan the country’s future. 

Scotland’s next census is in March 2022, so National Records of Scotland (who organise the census in Scotland) have launched “Speak Census”, a collection of materials and activities for children to inspire them to learn about Scotland’s Census 2022.

Here are some videos and activities from “Speak Census” that you can use with your child to help you both find out more about Scotland’s Census.

What is Scotland’s Census and how does it improve local communities?

The census is the official count of every person and household in Scotland. 

There has normally been a census every year ten years since 1801. The answers people give to the census questions help build a picture of the population. The census collects details of the names and ages of people who live in your household, as well as what job you have, what passports you hold and how many cars you have. 

Government and other service providers rely on census data to make important decisions.

This video explains more about what the census is and how census information helps local councils allocate budgets for improving local communities. 

Maybe after watching the video, you and your child could talk about how they would spend the council’s budget if they were in charge. Or how your local area has changed in the last 10 years.

Learn more about Loch Lomond and the census

This video explores how census data is used to protect one of Scotland’s most well-known natural landscapes, Loch Lomond.

After watching, you could ask your child about the wildlife you find in your local area, or what birds migrate to and from your area each year. You could even ask them about the monsters they think live in Loch Lomond! 

Talk using British Sign Language

This video looks at how the census has helped improve services for people who use British Sign Language (BSL).

Do you or anyone else in your family use BSL? You could talk to your child about the different languages people speak, or learn the signing word for Scotland, as shown in the video, or learn how to sign the alphabet in BSL.

What will my child learn at school about the census?

Schools in Scotland will have access to the “Speak Census” toolkit which includes a wide range of interactive materials and activities, including the videos above.

Your child will learn all about what the census is, its history, why it’s so important and why Scotland’s Census 2022 is so exciting. They’ll also be encouraged to talk to you about what they’ve learnt, so be ready!

What do I need to do about the census?

From the 28 February, every household in Scotland will be sent a letter with instructions for taking part in Scotland’s Census 2022.

For more information, visit Scotland’s Census, or follow us on Twitter and Facebook. We’d love to hear from you and see what “Speak Census” activities you’ve done with your child. Tag us @Scotcensus2022 or use #SpeakCensus.

Last updated: 27 Oct, 2021