Category Archives: storywwork

Creeping Toad on tour, Highlands September 2012

Creeping Toad in action, Apple Day at the Dove Valley Centre, October 2012

What else could happen?

Creeping Toad on tour,

3 – 14th September 2012

what else could go wrong?

what other trick could we play?

what will happen next?


With stories to inspire, enchant and engage, workshops to captivate, books to make and new adventures to find, Creeping Toad stories involve participants in worlds of marvel and wonder and leave people full of words and images and ready for action

“like dogs who need toys to have fun and be happy, children need fun and to play to be happy. Then we learn well. With Gordon we play and have fun and learn at the same time”

Year 5 pupil, Runcorn, 2011


Gordon MacLellan – Creeping Toad – is one of Britain’s foremost environmental art and education workers…and he tells stories too!


Between 3rd and 14th September, 2012  (and again in November), Gordon will be working in the Highland area (at least) and is available for a few bookings….


building stories out of found objects and occasional treasures

A day’s visit to your school might include


storytelling performances: lasting up to 60 minutes for up to 90 children at a time


stories outside! using the school ground, we’ll take storymaking out of the classroom and use the immediate environment, the day’s weather and whatever we can find to shape a set of stories never told before (allow 60 minutes for a class session)


story and book workshops: taking a bit longer (allow 90 minutes for a class) as well as discovering the stories that no-one has ever heard before, now we will build those into the books that no-one has ever read before and leave the classroom with a library no-one has ever visited before!


tales of old Scotland: a collection of stories of Highland folklore and Scottish histories, of heroes and sorrows, bravery and the magics of sea, mountain and moor


your own themes and ideas: or are you exploring a particular theme that you would like to involve some stories in? pirates….tropical islands….ancient cave people…..where in our school would bears live?…castle adventures,  have all featured in recent Creeping Toad projects


Charges: £250 a day: includes storyteller’s fee, travel and materials. Can be paid on the day or I can invoice you


effective storymaking invites us to step out of busyness and appreciate the world about usFor further information:

visit the Creeping Toad website at

To book: contact Gordon directly at

or by telephone:

landline: 01298 77964

         mobile: 07791 096857






Excitements at Annesley

A few days working with Foundation Stage children at Annesley Primary School, Nottinghamshire.

camels got priority in our desert tents!










With a theme “Children in other countries”, we set off on expeditions to make new friends:


We could fly in a ‘plane

            We could drive in a car

            We could ride on a donkey

            Or hang onto a motorbike

            We could sail in a boat

            Or gallop in a horse

            We could squeeze all of us onto one elephant

            Or have an elephant each

            Or we could sit on a flying carpet


Children went off exploring, finding other adventures, other animals, other children


            One group went to cold places and made a tent and a campfire. They cuddled up with polar bears at night to keep warm. They met wolves and bears and many friendly animals


the arctic encampment (including stray penguin)

            In Africa. another group saw lions, but were not afraid, although on person was scared of elephant noises


Working in the school garden, we made those tents, built those shelters, found homes for monkeys, frogs and crabs, assembled that picnic ( nuts, apples, leaf-ice-cream), photographing and drawing the results. Eventually we made friends with other children and recorded our adventures on pop-up cards with grown-ups doing the writing because when you are 4 years old it’s useful to have minions to do those sort of things….


On a tropical island, children made houses and met giant tortoises

And Jack (3 years old) said:
The eagle and the owl are friends,

            And beavers make dams,

            Whales swim in the sea,

            And squirrels climb trees,           

            But the eagle flies

            High in the sky.


inside of a pop-up card - an animal friend


assembled stories