Tag Archives: Alistair Bryce-Clegg


Leading Practitioners, Leading Practice – Early Years Summit

I’m very excited to announce that the Early Years Summit has had a bit of a make-over.

The Early Years Summits are free, regular, online conferences. Twice yearly a group of experts and specialists share their knowledge, research, expertise, and enthusiasm with the world. These have had themes such as  Quality Interactions; Personal, Social and Emotional Development; Physical Development; Outdoor Play and Learning.

As usual, these video interviews are available for free during the broadcast week – 22nd to 28th of October 2018.

But this Autumn Summit 2018 has something a bit extra.

You’ll still hear from leading Early Years experts from around the world, such as Alistair Bryce-Clegg, Christopher Phoenix, Professor Jan White, Rachel Buckler and Sandi Phoenix.

There’s still tons of great advice, thought-provoking discussion and lots of top tips to support your Early Years practice.

BUT – in addition to all this is a full programme of leading practitioners and educators from around the world, who are doing exceptional things for their children, from unusual environments to reflective safeguarding practices to children’s and practitioner’s wellbeing.

These outstanding practitioners and educators explain how they have implemented, grown and reflected on their own practice. They offer real-life solutions to challenges you may be having right now. You can learn about their methods and processes. Find out how they are making it better for children and get lots of support and advice to help you do the same. Of course, there are always the ‘top tips’ as well!

I’m delighted to have the experience and knowledge of both experts AND practitioners on the Summit in this unique way.

To find out more details and to sign up for the Autumn 2018 Early Years Summit, simply click below:



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Men In Childcare Podcast

Men In Childcare: Interview With Alistair Bryce-Clegg

Author of the “50 Fantastic Things … ” series of practical, fun and unusual ideas, Alistair Bryce-Clegg is also well known for his consultancy and Conferences.

Alistair Bryce-Clegg

Alistair has proved that being a man in Early Years Childcare is not only possible, but can also be inspiring for others – both men and women.

In this podcast interview, Alistair and I chat about what drew him to the Early Years sector, how settings can be more appealing to men and some of his funniest moments. As engaging as ever, Alistair also gives some great advice for any men who are thinking of joining the sector.

To find out more about Alistair and his work, visit www.abcdoes.com
This is the first in my series of podcasts on Men in Early Years Childcare. You can subscribe to get the podcasts automatically on iTunes by clicking here:


If you enjoy the podcast, please leave a review on iTunes too – it helps to promote the podcast and get it to reach a wider audience.

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Squish, Squash and Squeeze – from Alistair Bryce-Clegg

I am very proud and pleased to have a guest blog today.

I first met Alistair Bryce-Clegg when I asked him to come and ‘close’ our annual North West EYP Conference. He was amazing that day – and has been amazing our EYPs in the North West ever since! If you ever have the opportunity to hear Alistair at a Conference, I would strongly recommend you do so. Inspirational and irreverent in equal measure, and with loads of practical, cheap and useful ideas.

Which brings us to the blog. Alistair has very kindly shared this blog with me, which originally appeared on his site in February. You can find it here. He has also written a number of books, which you can find on Amazon or through your local independent book seller.

I hope you are as inspired as I was on reading these ideas. Enjoy!

Activity Ideas – Squish Squash and Squeeze

By Alistair Bryce-Clegg

It was meant to be a rare day off but it seems that the printing press waits for no man and I had to get my photoshoot sorted out for the next ’50 Fantastic Things’ book.

I have to say a HUGE thank you to Jo and all of the team at Penguins Pre-School in Timperley who were super organised and super helpful and made the shoot run like a dream.

Here are a few of the things that we did…



Mix some food colouring with water in a pot
Put 4 tablespoons of vegetable oil into the bottom of your plastic bag
Then add 4 tablespoons of coloured water
WAIT (and see what happens)
Add 4 tablespoons of golden syrup to the bag.
Zip up the bag and let the children squish.



I know that jelly is a regular favourite but it never fails to get great results. We tried putting jelly into various other containers of different sizes, ice cube trays, freezer bags and even a rubber glove, which made for a very squshy hand shake! In the pots of jelly, I asked Jo and the team to add other ‘items’ for the children to look at and fish out. These caused a great deal of interest.


You can use this idea in SO many ways. It works equally well on a large or small scale.


All you do is to cover a surface (in this case a table) with sticky backed plastic. MAKE SURE THE STICKY SIDE IS UP! You can secure it underneath the table with tape.

Then let the children stick various items onto it to make patterns. They are always fascinated by sticking their hands to it and feeling the resistance as they pull them away.


Dead easy and really effective…


Pink marshmallows in a bowl. Squirt of washing up liquid. Whizz in the microwave until they begin to melt. Cool a bit so as not to burn any fingers. That’s it!

If you use white marsh mallows you can add food colouring to change the colour of your slime.


Hours of fun… White bread, grated or crumbled into a bowl. Add PVA glue a teaspoonful at a time, mixing with your fingers. When the mixture becomes slightly tacky (not sticky), then it is ready. You can model with it and then leave it to air dry.

If you use flour and water paste instead of PVA you can leave your models out for the birds to eat!


The secret to this one is baby wipes!

Mix your gloop (or goop) as usual in a builders tray. Then paint it with food colouring. The best way to do this is to dip the corner of a baby wipe into the food colouring and then hold the clean bit.

That way you can dip and drag your wipe without getting stained fingers.

Once you have made your picture then play in it.


Cook as per the instructions. Add colour if you fancy it. Squish whilst warm!


Just soap flakes, water and a whisk!


What do you think this squashable landscape it made out of?


The answer is Vaseline! Scoop it out onto a glass plate or mirror then put it into the freezer over night. Take it out as you are about to use it. The Vaseline and the plate will have frosted over and stiffened up giving it a completely different texture.

If you want to make your Vaseline creation extra frosty then mist it with a water spray before you freeze it.

Hope that was a little bit of Thursday night inspiration! It was hard work, but great fun.


P.S. Don’t forget to check for food and skin allergies when you are doing any messy play!

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