Have you heard the exciting news? Toronto is getting a brand new Children’s Museum this May! The Children’s Discovery Centre is set to open on May 23, 2015. The 20,000 square foot building is located at 45 Strachan Avenue, next to Liberty Village. This hands-on “museum” is a place where children six and under can play – at their own pace, in their own way – exploring these ten unique discovery zones. This is a five month pilot, hopefully moving to a permanent facility in the downtown core as early as 2016.
Check out the amazing themed zones:
- Mini-City: a small scale “city”, complete with painted roads, street signs, tricycles, construction and a gravel pit. Kids get active here!
- Art Hive: crayons, clay, paint, easels, paper, squeegees. Kids get messy here!
- Make Believe: costumes, puppets, a stage, mirrors and mats. Kids build characters and dance here!
- Boom Room: drums, mallets, bongos, bells. Kids make ‘music’ here, sometimes with household items!
- Pet Vet: stethoscopes, doctor toys, lab coats, ‘x-rays’ and your own stuffed creatures. Kids love animals and learn empathy here!
- Eat Street: a mini-grocery store with shopping carts and produce PLUS mini-kitchens with stoves, pots, pans, aprons and utensils. Kids play with food here!
- Campground: rocks, logs, a canoe, magnifying glasses, tents and a ‘campfire’. Kids explore nature here!
- Imagination Station: kid-sized large foam blocks in amazing shapes that lock together. Kids build and create here!
- Storyland: books, colours, pillows and nooks. Kids learn words and listen here!
- First Discoveries: bright colours, soft textures, easy landings. The smallest kids crawl here! Caregivers and parents share and connect here!
Check out some photos of The Children’s Discovery Centre from opening day!
Kids will get messy, be creative, and learn about the world and themselves, as each zone is thoughtfully designed by early childhood education professionals and parents. It is different than the ROM and Ontario Science Centre in its focus and appeal for kids under six – like the KidSpark area of the Science Centre, but exponentially more. It’s a local mom’s dream to create something for our youngest citizens…something to compliment all the condos!
You can now take our popular Mommy Connections Mom & Baby program at the centre stating June 18th! Our weekly classes for moms with babies under 12 months provides a valuable learning opportunity as well as a fun way to bond with your child and other moms in a social environment. Each week’s class features a discussion lead by a local parenting expert followed by a fun activity for mom and baby. This allows for a unique bonding opportunity with your little one while still fulfilling your need to obtain information and be social with other moms experiencing the same challenges, fears and excitement. There are weekly door prizes, a free swag bag valued at over $200 full of samples and discounts from local businesses, as well as a complimentary photo shoot of mom & baby. We’ll meet every Thursday from 11-12:30, and a 4 week session costs only $80! More info here. If you have an older child, check out our Travelling Tots program.
What makes this space even more special, is the story behind it’s development. Unlike Toronto’s other tourist attractions, Toronto’s Children’s Discovery Centre is a grassroots initiative. It’s not a charity, not government funded and not corporately backed. It’s the brain child of a local business woman and mom, Jeanhy Shim.
The founder describes the Discovery Centre as “like the ultimate mash-up of the ROM, Ontario Science Centre, and Zoo for children 6 and under to play, explore, learn, create, get messy, dress-up and use their imaginations.”
We have an exclusive give-away, you could win a family pass (2 adults and 2 children) for The Children’s Discovery Centre! To enter, simply comment below with the “zone” you think your child will be most excited to explore! For additional chances to win, check out our rafflecopter contest here: a Rafflecopter giveaway
Contest closes Aug 7, 2015. Winner will be selected at random and contacted via email.