Archive for the 'Outside the Classroom – Toronto Area' Category

Outside the Classroom – Toronto Edition: Family Day

Did you know that Family Day is the most recent addition to Ontario’s holiday calendar?  Our first ever Family Day was in 2008.  The purpose of Family Day is to spend the day with loved ones, as well as to break up the long stretch of winter between New Year’s Day and Easter. 

Although there will be some closures, most family friendly attractions will be open.  Here are some of the amazing activities to participate in this Family Day:

Toronto Zoo: family trees at most indoor pavillions and animal family displays

Casa Loma: include ghost tracking on Sunday and on Monday a Dora the Explorer themed scavenger hunt and a “Become a Knight” program (pre-registration required).

Hockey Hall of Fame: free admission to youth 13 and under on Family Day (must be accompanied by a paying adult; 4 free youth permitted per adult ticket).

Royal Ontario Museum: African Adventure

City of Toronto: Events at different locations that will offer Dance, music, sculpture, street theatre, crafts, storytelling, skating, tasty treats and free hot chocolate.

The Beaches:  Family entertainment and animals from the Bowmanville Zoo. From 11am – 4pm

International Centre:  Toronto’s Kids-Fest with inflatable bouncers, stage shows, pony rides and more in 50,000 square feet! 

Downsview Park:  The city’s largest indoor amusement park featuring Rides, Attractions and Interactive Entertainment!

But if you are in the mood for shopping, the Eaton Centre and Yonge/Dundas shops will be open on Family Day as well. 

Happy Family Day!

*image credit: stock.xchng

❤❤❤❤ Peace, Love and Cupcakes

~ Nerissa

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Outside the Classroom – Toronto Edition: It’s Winter!

Mother Nature sent us some frigid weather and snow over the past few days just to remind us what season it is.  February is smack down in the middle of winter and Toronto is buzzing with activities.

Winterlicious 2011

Although Winterlicious officially kicked off on January 28th, there is still one more week of culinary events, classes and tastings around Toronto for the whole family to experience!  Visit the official city page of Winterlicious to see which restaurants are participating. 

Winterfest 2011

On February 5th from 11 – 4 p.m., Downsview Park will be transformed into a winter wonderland.  Visitors can frolic in an ice maze, slide down an ice slide, watch a great line up performers, participate in snowman building, mini-golf and meet a team of huskies!  There will be so much more to do… and it’s FREE!  Visit Winterfest 2011 for more information.

Don’t let the cold scare you into hibernating!  Get out there and enjoy our wonderful city!

*image credit: stock.xchng

❤❤❤❤ Peace, Love and Cupcakes

~ Nerissa

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Snow much Fun!

The BEST thing about snow is the fun that we can have frolicking in the cold and fluffy white stuff!  What to do in T.O.? 

SKATING

January is smack down in the middle of the outdoor skating season and there are many outdoor rinks that are great for family skates.  I think that I have to especially mention Samuel Smith Park near Humber College at Lakeshore and Kipling.  This park is home to Toronto’s FIRST skate trail!  Our friends at 1 LOVE TO talk about it here.  Find all other outdoor rinks here.

For those who would rather skate in the controlled weather environments of indoor rinks, find a list of Toronto arenas here.

SKIING and SNOWBOARDING

Yes… we can ski and snowboard in Toronto!  Centennial and Earl Bales Parks have great hills that are run by the city and offer lessons and equipment rental for the beginners. 

TOBOGANNING

 

 Any hill would do for a great day of toboganning, but the hills that have gained fame for being the best hills in Toronto for an awesome sled run are found in Riverdale Park, Christie Pits Park and Lithuania Park.

…and then of course we can never go wrong with making snow men, snow angels and forts in our backyards!

Have fun and be safe!

*image credit: iloveto.com

❤❤❤❤ Peace, Love and Cupcakes

~ Nerissa

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Outside the Classroom: Toronto Edition – 2011: Let’s Go!

Okay, so we are all too familiar with new year’s resolutions that include eating better, being more active and getting into shape.  It is easy to live an active and healthy life if we were ‘trained’ to do so from early ages.  With childhood obesity rates skyrocketing, it is becoming more and more important to get our children involved in extra curricular activities that does not include a DSi, iPod or other technological device that requires stagnancy and glazed over eyes. 

So where do we start finding activities that our kids are interested in?  Well there are tons of resources. 

First, the city is great with their recreational programs ranging from swimming, skating, dance – and everything in between.  They are cost efficient and perfect for keeping little kiddies active. 

For those families who want to take their sporting to another level, there are ‘rep’ clubs in different localities that will be able to offer the specific and intensified training that elite athletes need.  This of course, comes with a heftier price tag. 

Either way, extra curricular activities are not cheap – especially when multiple children are involved.  Remember there are programs such as Canadian Tire Jumpstart  and KidSport Canada.  Both groups are non-profit organizations that offer financial assistance to families needing help with registration/equipment fees – making sure that all children have adequate access to organized activities. 

So what are we all waiting for?  Let’s GO!  =) 

Happy New  Year!

❤❤❤❤ Peace, Love and Cupcakes

~ Nerissa

*image credit: stock.xchng

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Outside the Classroom: Toronto Edition – Food for the Soul

With the hustling and bustling of the most wonderful time of the year, it is easy to overlook those who are less fortunate.  

The holidays have become so commercialized and focused on ‘consumption’ that the real meaning of the holiday season (no matter what religious or non-religious belief you may have) has been lost in the midst of the tinsel, gift wrap and credit card bills. 

While we run around trying to organize and prepare for our holiday dinners, there are others who may go without a dinner altogether… let alone enjoy the company of loved ones. 

This holiday season, I challenge everyone (with their families) to reconnect with the ‘humanity’ and good will that is innate within all of us.  Volunteering at a local soup kitchen creates experiences that are life changing and help us to re-realize what matters… each other.  You will be helping to provide physical nutrition, but you will also be creating mental and emotional nutrition for everyone involved… food for the soul. 

BlogTO recently made a listing of local soup kitchens here

From my family to yours, Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays and Happy New Year! 

❤❤❤❤ Peace, Love and Cupcakes

~ Nerissa

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Outside the Classroom: Toronto Area edition

Experience and Education

Within the last 15 years or so, there has been a shift in belief about education and how we ‘learn’.  I remember reading it somewhere and living through the whole shift of ideology.  We know now more than ever that real life experience is where the nitty gritty ‘learning’ happens.  We see this in the revised school curriculums where the learning material is presented in more of a problem solving format – where it can be easily applied to real life situations. 

Having said that, education is not just within the walls of the classroom.  Supplementing traditional class time with quality non-‘school’ experiences is important.  Family activities/outings, sports, volunteering, etc. not only create precious family memories, but contribute to learning about life.  What we learn outside of the classrooms is carried over into how we make decisions – and ultimately, play an important role in how we live our lives.  =)  

There are hundreds of programs and activities to experience in the city at any given time.  What we choose to do depends on so many factors… like time commitment, accessibility, cost… and whether or not you have clean laundry (for us anyways).  The real challenge is knowing what’s happening and when.  Enter: yours truly. 

December is such an awesome time for events… to start and/or continue traditions.  Here are some events that are happening in the TDot.  Enjoy!

Event: Downsview Park Trail of Lights

Location: Downsview Park

Date: November 26 – January 2

Time: 6 – 11 p.m.

Cost: $4 chilld | $8 adult

Link: http://www.downsviewpark.ca/eng/tol_promo2010.shtml

Event: Christmas at Black Creek (various events)

Location: Black Creek Pioneer Village

Date: Every weekend in December

Cost: Ranges from $24 – $75 (the latter being family rates)

Link: http://www.blackcreek.ca/whats-on/christmas/

Event: Children’s Lantern Parade

Location: The Distillery District

Date: December 4

Time: 5 pm

Cost: $10

Link: http://www.toronto.com/kids_events/event/661522

Event: Harbourkids: SK8

Location: Harbourfront

Date: December 4-5

Cost: Free

Link: http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/harbourkids/index.cfm?ref=fp

Event: Redpath Winterfest 2010

Location: Harbourfront

Date: Dec. 4, 11 and 18

Cost: Free

Link: http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/whatson/today.cfm?id=2673&ref=fp

Side Note: Santa cruise $10 per person | under 6 FREE

Event: Live Reindeer

Location: Shops at Don Mills

Date: December 4, 11 18

Cost: Free

Link: http://www.shopsatdonmills.ca/en/custom/Pages/ReindeerDec4-5.aspx

❤❤❤❤ Peace, Love and Cupcakes

~ Nerissa


 

Candace also blogs for
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