Search for ideas, guides and inspiration

Three wonderful boxes packed full of ideas to encourage rich language, writing and communication. Alistair has a wonderful and unique flair for understanding children’s interests and how to motivate them. Here, a former Early Years teacher looks at the boxes in more detail.



As a former Early Years teacher, I was always searching for ways to improve my continuous provision and to give children the most memorable experiences possible. The look on their faces when there is something new to explore is fantastic! The ‘something new’ (even though it can be as simple as a large cardboard box) is not always as easy as it seems to come up with. I would often look around at the resources we had available and feel as though they had all been used once too often. Talking to and planning with my TAs was great, but there was rarely enough time. Being the only EY class in the school, I relished any opportunities to look around other schools and see the wealth of creative ideas that practitioners used, and I took many of them away with me.

In one such school visit, I saw the ‘Box of Bones’ (put together by Alistair Bryce-Clegg in collaboration with TTS) being used in a school and I saw how much it excited and inspired the children. Its contents are shared below, along with two other boxes full of ideas for teachers to use as a springboard for children’s imaginations.

Imagine following fairy footprints to a woodland scene complete with a camp fire and a table set for tea. Picture the children’s faces as they dig up a huge bone (possibly from a T-Rex). There’s so much potential for rich language and mark making.

High level of engagement for high level attainment.

Alistair Bryce-Clegg

  • Covering all aspects of the EYFS, bridging into KS1
  • Rich opportunities for language development and all aspects of mark making
  • Activities that develop children’s imaginations and language skills
  • Opportunities for deep level learning and sustained shared thinking
  • Each box includes a book and CD with an abundance of downloadable material and a range of open ended resources for maximum potential. 

Box of Exploration

Box of exploration

Brimming with suggestions for exciting learning opportunities, helping to build imaginations and create memorable experiences.

Children love to explore. It is part of their human nature and it supports their sense of curiosity. Produced by TTS in partnership with Alistair Bryce-Clegg, this box is brimming with suggestions for exciting learning opportunities, whilst helping to build imaginations and create memorable experiences.

Alistair suggests inspiring writing solutions, ways to promote discussion as well as wondrous, atmospheric role play scenarios. There are exciting artefacts that will enable creativity skills to soar. Imagine finding pirate treasure, a golden mask or a code breaker. Enable high level engagement for literacy skills to flourish as they write their expedition lists, create maps or create detailed letters from their far away destinations.

Peer through the telescope and navigate with the compass. There is a CD with an abundance of literacy suggestions. So, get them involved, get them inspired and ready to write about their adventures.

Box of Fairies

Box of Fairies

This bumper fairy box collection of curious objects, downloadable materials and a fantastic book, offers wonderful open-ended learning activities.

Alistair has a unique flair for understanding children’s interests and how to motivate them. Try reflecting on how you would make tiny jam tarts and letters for fairies. Imagine following fairy footsteps to a woodland scene, complete with a camp fire and table set for tea. There’s so much potential for rich language, mark making and a deep level of learning and sustained shared thinking.

You’ll love seeing the children enthralled and captivated with these memorable, magical moments. Imagine all this potential in one box!

Box of Bones

Box of bones

A brilliant Box of Bones brimming with ideas for learning opportunities whilst igniting imaginations. The box includes a curious collection of replica bones, claws, skeletons and other resources to inspire and excite.

  • Imagine finding a dinosaur egg in the middle of your setting.
  • Who does it belong to? Will it hatch into a dragon, a phoenix or a T-Rex?

Produced by TTS in partnership with Alistair Bryce-Clegg, this collection aims at encouraging high level engagement and in return achieving high level attainment.

Alistair’s book and printable materials provide a treasure trove of activities covering all aspects of the EYFS. It has a strong emphasis on mark making and giving children a real sense of purpose for writing.

There’s so much potential for rich language, mark making and a deep level of learning and sustained shared thinking. You’ll love seeing the children enthralled and captivated with these memorable, magical moments. Imagine all this potential in one box!

N.B the contents of these boxes are not toys, they act as inspiration for wonderful imaginings.

Alistair enjoyed a successful 10 year career as the Head teacher of three-form entry Infant school and Early Years Unit in Cheshire. Alongside his headship he established a consultancy career specialising in the education of children in the Early Years.

Demand for his consultancy became so great that Alistair left headship and established ABC Does

Most of his time is spent supporting practitioners in their settings or delivering key notes and training, specialising all aspects of Early Years practice and management for both the maintained and non-maintained sectors nationally and internationally.

Alistair is also an award-winning author and product designer, whose work has been published in a number of books and magazines. Alongside support and training for a range of settings and schools Alistair also works Internationally and with Local Authorities across the UK.


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