Nickelodeon’s Dora the Explorer Live! Search for the City of Lost Toys – Exclusive Presale

Due to popular demand, Dora the Explorer is coming back! On May 20, 2015 at TCU Place Dora welcomes families to discover, communicate, overcome obstacles, solve puzzles and discover a diverse and exciting world along with her on one incredible adventure in Nickelodeon’s Dora the Explorer Live! Search for the City of Lost Toys!

As a Mommy Connections Saskatoon reader, you are invited to participate in the limited time presale starting at 10am Tuesday, January 27 until Thursday, January 29. Use the code: SWIPER at checkout to take advantage of the presale at @kobaentertainment #DoraLiveCanada

Dora is embarking on her most important mission yet in Nickelodeon’s Dora the Explorer Live! Search for the City of Lost Toys. Dora has lost her teddy bear, and the search is on to find him. With help from the audience, Boots, Map, Backpack, Diego and more, Dora uses her directional, counting, musical and language skills to successfully pass through the Number Pyramid and the Mixed-up Jungle to reach the City of Lost Toys. But watch out! You never know what that sneaky fox Swiper might be up to along the way!

This interactive live show will have the whole family out of their seat singing and dancing along. Dora welcomes families to discover, communicate, overcome obstacles, solve puzzles and discover a diverse and exciting world along with her on one incredible adventure!

About Dora the Explorer Live!

Nickelodeon’s Dora the Explorer Live! Search for the City of Lost Toys is a theatrical show produced by Koba Entertainment, the producers behind other memorable theatrical productions including The Backyardigans: Quest for the Extra Ordinary Aliens, Toopy and Binoo and the Marshmallow Moon and Max & Ruby in the Nutcracker Suite.

Koba Entertainment’s artistic director Patti Caplette utilized the company’s hallmark innovative multimedia technology to create a truly unique production. This live musical adventure features an all-star creative team including F&D Scene Changes and projection designer, Beth Kates.

Nickelodeon’s Dora the Explorer LIVE! Search for the City of Lost Toys has been tremendously successful worldwide in regions, such as the United Kingdom, Australia, Europe, North America and South America, where Dora the Explorer LIVE! has sold over 2 million tickets.

What is Kindermusik?

We have another great blog entry from guest author Rosemary Stephanson (Miss Rosie), who is an online and in-person Kindermusik Educator for Kindermusik with Kari & Friends. My daughters love going to Kindermusik – even my 10 week old baby – she wakes up the second we get into the building and loves the singing, movement and music. My two year old, who loves to run and be active enjoys herself every week!

Hello, everyone! Happy 2015! I’m excited to return as a guest blogger for the Mommy Connections Saskatoon website. Thank-you to Jennie for this opportunity.

As you can tell from Jennie’s introduction, I’m a Kindermusik Educator. In previous posts, I haven’t talked specifically about Kindermusik. So I thought, hey – a post about Kindermusik is the perfect way to kick off 2015.

The quick answer to the question, “What is Kindermusik?” is this: It’s a music and movement-based early childhood education program for children newborn to seven years old. There’s way more to it, though.

In 2014, I did a Q&A with Kari Soroski, owner of Kindermusik with Kari & Friends. A few of the questions and answers directly pertain to the question, “What is Kindermusik?” so I thought they would be a great resource for this post. If you’d like to read the original Q&A, click here. In addition, Kari and I were conversing back and forth over email the other day, and I asked if she had any closing remarks for this post. Well, she sure does…and they directly pertain to you! *Hint: There may be something about free baby classes for Mommy Connections families… *

And now, without further ado, here’s my Q&A with Miss Kari!

Q: Can you describe the entire Kindermusik experience for Mommy Connections blog readers, starting with Cuddle & Bounce (babies), and ending with Young Child (5-7 year olds)? 

A: Kindermusik is developmentally appropriate. We have a program for every year of life with an overlap of 6 months. This gives children the chance to learn at the level that they are currently at and progress when they are ready. In each age group, we build on musical concepts which facilitate the development of the whole child, physically, intellectually, emotionally and (of course!) musically. For example, legato and staccato in Cuddle & Bounce is explored by moving babies in smooth and bumpy ways. It’s easier to learn a concept when you contrast it with its opposite. For this reason, we’ll choose a smooth movement like rocking and contrast it with a bumpy movement like a lap bounce. When children are rocked, their vestibular system – or inner ear – is stimulated, which helps them to gain a sense of balance. When children participate in a lap bounce, they’re experiencing steady beat, which we use to walk, ride a bike, dance, use scissors, play basketball, etc. The list goes on! While we’re moving the babies, we’re labeling each movement.

Fast forward a few years, and we’re in Laugh & Learn. Children develop a deep understanding of what “smooth” and “bumpy” mean through music and movement games that emphasize both concepts. Lots of creativity is involved, here. “Smooth lions” and “bumpy dinosaurs” are some of the many creatures you’ll come across in Laugh & Learn class!

Finally, fast forward a couple more years to Young Child. The terms, “smooth” and “bumpy,” have turned into their musical counterparts, “legato and staccato.” Children learn to apply these terms to musical expression when they’re playing or singing Kindermusik songs. Children also come to realize that all music has one or both of these concepts – playing music legato or staccato can continue beyond the Kindermusik studio! From Cuddle & Bounce to Young Child, socialization and caregiver-child bonding is built in to every Kindermusik class that we do.

Q: If you could tell current Kindermusik families one thing, what would it be?

A: Be present with your children while you are at class. Pretend that you and your child are the only ones that exist in the room at that moment. Life is so busy and little people need your undivided attention. Just five minutes of focused play a day will decrease your power struggles with your child by 50 per cent! That’s amazing! It will also make you a happier, more relaxed parent.

Q: If you could tell prospective Kindermusik families one thing, what would it be? 

A: Kindermusik is the best money you will spend on your child ever!! I know it shouldn’t always be about the money, but it’s not easy to be a young family these days. Cost of living is high and often both parents have to work to make ends meet. Kindermusik has great value because it not only develops your child’s musicality, but it also develops social skills, emotional intelligence, literacy, spatial awareness, co-ordination and connects your child’s brain in ways that nothing else can! It’s fun and it makes memories that last a life time! Can you tell that I love it? I’m choking up as I’m writing this!

Q: Yes, I can totally tell that you love it. Well, we’d better wrap this Q&A up now. Any closing remarks?

A: Yes. Over the past few months, I’ve had the pleasure of working with Mommy Connections families. It’s been a fun, rewarding process, and it’s inspired me to try something I’ve never done before. If you’d like to keep the Kindermusik experience going beyond Mommy Connections, myself and my team would love to have you! So, if you have a baby (newborn – walker) and you’d like to try Kindermusik classes at one of our studios, you’re welcome to come for free to as many of these Cuddle & Bounce classes as you like until the end of January:

SASKATOON – Wednesday @ 4:15 p.m. – 5 p.m. and Thursday @ 2:30 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.

MARTENSVILLE – Thursday @ 3:15 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Also, if you come to a free studio class, love it, and decide to enroll, I’ll give you $10/month off for 3 months.

We hope to see you at one of our studios soon!! Take it away, Miss Rosie!

Thanks, Kari!

I hope you enjoyed this blog post about Kindermusik. If you have questions about anything mentioned in the Q&A above, please feel free to email Kari at or contact us on one of our Facebook pages Saskatoon Facebook page; Martensville Facebook page  and either Kari or myself will get back to you.

What topics would you like me to cover about music in early childhood? Please leave your requests in the comments section below. I want to write about what’s important to you!

Musically Yours,

Miss Rosie






Thank you to everyone who came out to the Christmas Party on Wednesday, December 17th! I hope everyone had a great time playing with their little one, decorating gingerbread cookies, making snowmen, painting Christmas ornament, making music with Kindermusik, socializing and of course getting their photo done with Santa! Here is a list of the lucky door prize winner.

Thank you to Shannon with Only You Photography for the great Santa photos (photos posted on our Facebook page). And thank you to Katelynn for helping out with the photos!

Thank you to Kari with Kindermusik with Kari & Friends for the fun, interactive music area

And a big thank you to Santa who came out to visit and take photos with the kids!

Christmas Party Door Prize Winners:


DoTerra gift pack – Lindsay Bitner

Winner: Darcelle Sorsdahl



Blanket – Butterfly Kisses Baby Creations

Winner: Angeline Pettigrew


pig 2

Amber Teething Necklace – Piggy and Minnow Naturals

Winner: Keri Schaffel



Silicone Teething Bracelet – Piggy and Minnow Naturals

Winner: Candace Sonmor



Prairie Wind Alpacas $25 gift certificate

Winner: Jill Payette



Gift Basket from READ Saskatoon

Winner: Amber Tyson


Mom and Baby

Registration in Mommy Connections January 2015 Mom and Baby Group

Wednesdays 1:15 to 2:45 pm January 14th to March 4th

Winner: Jolene Katelnikoff and Jill Gall


Mom and Tot

Registration in Mommy Connections January 2015 Mom and Tot Group

Friday 11:00 to 12:00 January 9th to February 13th

Winner: Desiree Martin



$100 gift certificate to Suds in the Bucket Cleaning Service

Winner: Laura Lewis


Plus as an extra “prize” for everyone use coupon code “XmasParty” between now and Sunday December 21st at midnight and save $15 off your registration for any 6-8 week program!


Congratulations to all the winners. You have 48 hours to claim your prize (Saturday December 20th at Noon) or I will re-draw

To claim please email

Thank you to Feld Entertainment for the family pack of tickets to Disney Live! Mickey’s Music Festival in Saskatoon on December 8th. I took my 2 daughters – aged 2 and 1 month – to the 4 pm show. The show was full of non-stop dancing and music and was very entertaining. Everyone was dancing and singing along with their favorite Disney characters.


The show started off with Mickey, Minnie, Donald Duck and Goofy. They sang a couple songs and really got the crowd involved and excited – my daughter loved clapping and stomping along with them.

image2  Genie, Aladdin, Jasmine and Magic Carpet came and they sang some original Aladdin songs along with some new ones. image3

After Aladdin, Sabastian from The Little Mermaid was joined by the daughters of King Triton to perform.

There was then a short intermission and we came back to Mickey, Minnie, Donald Duck and Goofy to get the crowd moving and excited for the second half.

We returned to the Little Mermaid and now Ariel, Ursula and Prince Eric joined Sebastian. They did a great job of doing about a 15 minute condensed story of The Little Mermaid with some great original songs and some new ones as well.


The final act was Woody, Buzz, Jessie and Bullseye. They did some great roping and jump rope tricks. When Buzz arrived some large meteors fell and bounced into the crowd, everyone loved bouncing the large balls around through the crowd.


The show ended with one last song with Mickey, Minnie, Donald Duck and Goofy and some of the characters from Aladdin, Little Mermaid and Toy Story joined them.

Disney Live! Mickey’s Music Festival was a great show. My 2 year old daughter loved it and danced along to the songs, she also made sure that I was dancing along with her! I love how the characters got the audience involved in the acts.They were great at getting the children in the audience excited and up on their feet dancing- the energy was very high! You couldn’t help but dance along and get involved! There were also lots of interactive parts of the show, where the characters would ask the crowd a question and the audience would answer.

I also loved how they sang some original Disney songs like Little Mermaid’s Under the Sea and Aladdin’s A Whole New World but also new songs like Cyndi Lauper’s Girls Just want to Have Fun, Beyoncé’s Single Ladies and Cotton Eyed Joe.

They did an amazing job and we will definitely go back and I would recommend the show to anyone!

We have another great guest blog entry from Tanya with My Smart Hands. As a parent you often hear that sensory play is important for your little one, but why? Tanya has answered this questions below:

Sensory play is important for a child’s whole wellness and development. Sensory play allows a child to learn through their 5 senses (often taste is not included). However, children learn from touch, sight, hearing, sound and taste.

Often, when parents here sensory play they immediately think of messy, dirty, and hard to clean up activities. While, these types of bins are included in sensory play there are ways to incorporate this type of play without the added mess.

In one of our Tiny Tot Sensory classes, we placed red, yellow and/or blue paint into ziplock bags. As quiet and calming music played in the background, parents encouraged their children to squeeze, squish, mush and touch the closed ziplock bags of paint. This allowed the children to feel/touch the cool and squishy paint, see the original colours and then see a new colour being created before their eyes! Prior to this activity, we learned many American Sign Language signs to promote learning and exploration.

My Smart Hands Saskatoon brings in many whole child development activities in their classes to promote a learning, education, language rich environment that is fun for parents and their little ones.

Happy Signing,

Tanya Myrfield-Wolfe- BSW, RSW, Certified Baby Sign Language Instructor, & Parent Educator

My Smart Hands Saskatoon

Cell: 306-202-9345306-202-9345

“It is vital when educating our children’s brains that we don’t neglect to educate their hearts.” – Dalai Lama

Top 10 Christmas Activities to do with Kids

I know with our family we like to take in as many holiday activities and events as possible. It is a great time of the year to spend together and love to make the most of it. But it can be hard to know which events are happening when so I have made a list of the top 10 Christmas activities to do in Saskatoon that are kid friendly.

1) Festival of Trees
November 23-24, 2014
9 am to 9 pm
Western Development Museum

2) Enchanted Forest
Friday November 21st and Sunday January 11 5:30 to 9 pm – Light Walk
November 22nd to January 10th 5:30 to 11 pm daily
Saskatoon Forestry Farm

3) Sundog Arts and Entertainment Faire

Friday December 5th 5 pm to 10 pm
Saturday December 6th 10 am to 10 pm
Sunday December 7th 11am to 5 pm
Sasktel Centre

4) Skating at the Bessborough
Open December to March
Free of charge

5) Eaton’s Once Upon a Christmas

November 1 to January 11
Western Development Museum

6) Sleigh Rides
Western Development Museum
Starting November 23rd
Sundays 12:30 – 2:30

7) Holiday Market
Saskatoon Farmers Market
December 4th – 4:30 to 8 pm
December 6th – Visit with Santa 11 am to 1 pm

8) Photos with Santa
Visit previous post about where to spot Santa in Saskatoon

9) Sledding
Grab your sled and head to Diefenbaker Park for some great sledding

10) Baking and Christmas Crafts
Keep watching our blog for our favorite holiday recipes and crafts!

We also have a bonus event, which is great for the entire family and occurs after Christmas.

Bonus: PotashCorp Wintershines Festival
January 26 – February 2, 2015
They have it all: professional ice carving, an awesome ice park, winter camp, soup cookoff, ice Jam and so much more! This amazing event runs for more than 2 weeks and offers a wide variety of events for all ages!

We have another blog entry from Tanya with My Smart Hands Saskatoon on the benefits on Sign Language on a child’s development.

Does Baby & Toddler Sign Language Promote Whole Child Development?

My Smart Hands Saskatoon is a program that teaches parents how to communicate with their children by using American Sign Language (ASL) signs. Our classes use ASL signs, as the research studies indicate that using a true language has more benefits that making up signs or gestures. We also, believe that ASL is a true language, and why not borrow this language’s signs to communicate with your child? Technically, you are teaching two languages. How neat is that?

Each week in our classes we cover a new and exciting theme! One of my favorite themes is ‘toys and objects’ as this week we play, explore and play some more. However, in all of the weeks, parents and children will be introduced to child development activities. Whole child development is very important, and is a key focus in our baby sign classes.

The whole child activities that we include in our classes focus on: physical, intellectual, social, emotional and language development. Here are some examples of how we promote child development and whole child wellness while maintaining the premise of ASL signs.

Physical (fine and gross motor skills)

Fine Motor:

In our ‘opposite’ theme we will bring out sensory boards and bins. These boards help children explore their world through various textile items. Parents are encouraged to sign, ‘touch’, ‘feel’, ‘look’, ‘rough’, ‘soft’ and much more.
Gross motor skills:

In our “animal” theme we will be going to the zoo and move as animals. This song and activity is a wonderful way for parents and their babies to move around the room, dance together, act like specific animals, and sign to the sounds each animal makes! Movement and music do promote a special bond.

Social Development:

A child’s social skills are being strengthened and encouraged in our classes. My Smart Hands Saskatoon, has small class sizes which are between 3 to 6 families. We keep our classes small, to ensure families get to know one another and their children recognize familiar faces each week.

All the parents and their children are welcomed to sit together on a shared foam square. Toys and easy to sign books are places in the middle to encourage play and exploration while parents are sharing their stories, asking questions and learning signs to be used in the following activity. We experience many first in our classes- first time a child signs, first crawl, first roll over and even have had our first steps!

Emotional Development:

Babies and toddlers are learning about their emotions and are not able to self-regulate. However, in our classes, we often discuss ways to help a child learn to self-regulate. This is done though song, movement and bouncing activities. Parents will also learn various ‘emotion’ signs during our last week together! We sign and sing, “If You are Happy and Know it” as well as “Happy Face Happy Face What Do You See?”.

Intellectual (Cognitive) Development:

Using ASL signs strengths and connects neurological brain connection. This means the activities that we use in our classes, increases and promotes intellectual/cognitive development.

An example of an activity is our ‘shake’ bottles. These bottles are often filled with water, sparkles, soap and water. Together, the parent and their child, shake the bottle and watch the changes. The specific brain development concept that is being learn is called, cause and effect. This activity is completed in our “toy/object” theme.

Social Development:

One main reason we keep our class sizes small, is that the children are able to socialize with the other children. Various child activities, promote social skill development such as movement and music. We sign and sing a version of “open shut them”, when children need to move about, which includes the sign “stop” for the English word freeze. All the parents and children have to “stop” until the music starts again. This song is teaching the social development skill of turn taking!

Language Development:

In short, language development is occurring during all of our baby sign language classes. Research indicates that a child needs to hear a word 200 times before verbally saying the word.

In all of our baby sign language classes, we are promoting the use of two languages! These are our verbal English and American Sign Language signs. Children are able to comprehend a single work though both auditory and visional learning. We never replace our verbal English, rather we support language development though using ASL signs

Please join us for a baby sign language class, and learn many more ways to promote whole child development!

Happy Signing,

Tanya Myrfield-Wolfe- BSW, RSW, Certified Baby Sign Language Instructor, & Parent Educator

My Smart Hands Saskatoon

Cell: 306-202-9345306-202-9345

We have another guest blog entry from Kara Broks, a Registered Speech Language Pathologist with Speech Language Network. This entry focuses on Speech-Language Developmental Milestones for children aged 3-4 years and different fun activities you can do with your child to foster speech-language growth.

3-4 Years

Speech-Language Developmental Milestones and Fun Activities that Foster Speech-Language Growth

Hearing and Understanding 3-4 years

  • Hears media volume (TV, radio, music) at the same level as others around them
  • Hears when they are called from another room
  • Understands some words for concepts like colours, shapes, family members
  • Knows own name and age
Talking 3-4 years

  • Asks “when, how, why” questions and answers basic “who, what, where” questions
  • Talks about activities that occurred during the day and orders events sequentially
  • Takes part in longer conversations and keeps track of topic
  • Speaks clearly and is understood approximately 80% of the time, both by family and non-family members
  • Builds sentences of around four words and uses about four sentences at a time
  • Uses some correct plural forms (“books”), as well as incorrect ones (“tooths,” “fishes”)
  • Uses pronouns (“I,” “you,” “they”)
  • Uses rhyming words (“mat” and “bat”)

 It is important to remember that each child is unique and as such, there will be variance in developmental sequences. If, however, your child hasn’t reached the majority of the milestones in their age group, you may wish to contact a Speech-Language Pathologist.

You may want to contact a Speech-Language Pathologist if your toddler: 

 DAILY ACTIVITIES 3-4 years Things you can do with your three – four year old to encourage and foster speech-language development; 

If you have any questions please feel free to email: info@speechlanguagenetwork.netand/or call 306 933-3222 to book a free consultation with a Registered Speech-Language Pathologist.      Enjoy and have fun! 

Anna Nissen B.A (Linguistics-U of S)           

Kara Broks Registered Speech-Language PathologistSpeech-Language Network   References:

Thank you to everyone who came out to the Halloween Party on Friday! I hope everyone had a great time playing with their little one, making some crafts/Duplo pumpkins, getting their photo done and socializing with other moms! Here is a list of the lucky door prize winner.

Halloween Party Door Prize Winners Announced


Free admission pass

Donated by The Parent and Tot Expo

Winner #1: Stacey Petten – Claimed

Winner #2: Erin Lengyel- Claimed



Melissa and Doug Grocery Boxes

Donated by The Parent and Tot Expo

Winner: Jenn Larson – Claimed



Melissa and Doug Christmas Cookie Set

Donated by Parent and Tot Expo

Winner: Alexis Williams- Claimed



A silicone pendant necklace

Winner: Suzanne Olson


A mommy & me baltic amber set

Winner: Brianne Burt – Claimed


A hazelwood bracelet

Winner: Danielle Briske – Claimed

All donated by Piggy and Minnow Naturals



Tupperware Fridge Smart

Donated by Amanda Friesen

Winner: Tasha-Lea Gatzke – Claimed



2 for 1 Movie Pass and Book

Donated by Movies for Mommies Saskatoon

Winner: Kristin Pollon



 1 month free of dance classes for your little one

Donated by Dance in the Prairies School of Ballet

Winner: Stephanie Toth – Claimed



Free Registration in our Winter Mom and Baby Program

November 18th to January 20th

Winner: Randi Graham- Claimed

Free Registration in our Winter Mom and Tot Program

November 7th to December 19th

Winner: Ashley Klein


Plus as an extra “prize” for everyone use coupon code “Halloween” between now and Sunday November 2nd at midnight and save $15 off your registration for any program!


Congratulations to all the winners. You have 48 hours to claim your prize (Monday November 3rd at Noon) or I will re-draw

To claim please email

We have another great guest blog entry from Kara Broks of Speech Language Network about Speech and Language development milestones in 2-3 year olds as well as some fun activities to help foster speech-language growth.


Speech-Language Developmental Milestones and Fun Activities that foster Speech-Language Growth

American Speech-Hearing Association 2014

Hearing & Understanding 2-3 years Talking 2-3 years

  • Comprehends differences in meaning (“hot/cold,” “in/out”)
  • Able to follow 2 requests (“Pick up your toys and put them in the basket”)
  • Able to listen to and enjoy stories for longer periods

  • Uses 2-3 words to talk about and ask for things (“Daddy hat,”I ride horse”)
  • Asks or directs attention to objects by naming them (“Look, cat!”, “where dog?”)
  • Uses the following sounds: k,g,f,t,d,n
  • Has a word for almost everything
  • May stutter on some words or sounds
  • Asks Why? (“Why you smiling?”, “Why baby sad?”)


You may want to contact a Speech-Language Pathologist if your toddler: 

It is important to remember all children are unique and will vary in their development.  If, however, your child hasn’t reached the majority of the milestones for their age group, you may wish to contact a Speech-Language Pathologist.


Things you can do with your toddler to encourage and foster speech-language development; 

Expand vocabulary, communication & language awareness

If you have any questions please feel free to email: and/or call 306 933-3222 to book a free consultation with a Registered Speech-Language Pathologist.


Enjoy & Have Fun!

Anna Nissen

B.A (Linguistics – U of S)



Kara Broks

Registered Speech-Language Pathologist

Speech-Language Network

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