0131 651 6444/ 07386656710 step@ed.ac.uk

STEP Starter Sacks is an exciting new early years programme bringing play-based learning activities into the homes of Gypsy/Traveller children. Our aim is that every child is able to learn through play, offering the best start for going to school and improving opportunities throughout life. 

  What’s in the sack?

 Watch these short videos to find out what you get in our three STEP Starter Sacks!

  Sack 1 – My first red Home Starter Sack

 Sack 2 – My yellow science edition sack

Sack 3 – My green Health and Wellbeing sack

How to get involved in the Starter Sack Programme

When families get involved they will be offered a Starter Sack containing paints, craft materials, puppets and lots more.  The Sacks also contain activity cards with links to ideas and activities on this website.  You will have a key contact person who will be able to answer any questions. This will usually be a someone from the local school or nursery or a Traveller site manager.   The contact person will let you know when more materials are available.

To find out more about getting involved in the Starter Sack programme, get in touch with your Gypsy/Traveller educator, the local primary school or nursery, your site manager or email STEP at step@ed.ac.uk

Teachers and local authority staff please visit Starter Sack information for teachers

Latest news: New starter sack activities for families!

Check out our new family learning activity cards to support the wee yellow starter sack science edition. You’ll receive a set of 3 activity cards: Exploring insects, growing cress and finding footprints. Remember you can find ‘idea starter’ videos below for each set of cards showing you how to do the activities.

Get in touch with STEP or your local authority education contact about STEP starter sacks. Have fun!

  Idea Starters

Playing inside and outside the home helps children to make sense of their world, to challenge themselves, manage their emotions, interact with others and enjoy time alone. These skills are all important for starting school. Watch our short videos to get started. Remember, there is no right way to play and the important thing is to have fun!

Messy Play

Exploring nature




Exploring colours

Exploring insects

Growing cress

Finding footprints


The lifecycle of a butterfly


Find lots of fun and easy learning activities to do as a family at home in our learning resources.

  Chatting and counting With Pictures

Every STEP Starter Sack includes a Counting with Pictures learning activity as a set of 10 hand-drawn family activity cards. The cards were made by Scottish Traveller Kelly Stewart and her artist friend, Jo Waterhouse.  You can use them to chat about Traveller life past and present or share stories. You can get all generations involved.

Find the online Counting with Pictures activity in our learning resources or get in touch with STEP if you’d like a printed pack.

Teachers and local authority staff please visit Starter Sack information for teachers