Youth Program Instructor

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Vashon, WA
United States

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Job Description:

We’re growing and are excited to welcome a new instructor to teach in our weekly programs for 7-12 year olds in our weekly school-year program (Fridays) and our monthly program (one Saturday a month). Preference will be given to applicants who are able to work in both programs. This part-time position begins in September. Check out the details below and connect with us!

About the position:

Our Fire Tender program is our longest running program (10+ years), and meets each Friday from late September-early June. We are expanding this program to meet the on-going demand for deep nature connection mentoring in our community. The program is already full for 2017-2018 with a wait list.

We’re looking for a vibrant, experienced Coyote Mentor to compliment the teaching ACORN. You would team-teach with 3 other seasoned instructors, all of whom have been with VWP for 3-5. Long-term mentoring is a hallmark of this program, as many of the children started at VWP when they were very young and moved up to the Fire Tender program, and many of them return year after year. Whether you’re connecting with kids who are already grounded in the 8 Shields model, or those who are new to the world of nature connection, Fire Tenders offers you a chance to work and play with a group of engaged and vibrant kids and mentors alike.

Instructors in the Fire Tender program are paid for weekly program instruction, planning/prep time, potlucks, field trips, spring overnight, end of year graduation event, community-wide seasonal celebrations, staff development/training, promotional events, and other meetings as requested. More than a job, it’s an incredible opportunity to grow and tend nature-rooted community and culture. 

Our Forest Tracker program meets on the 2nd Saturday of each month October-May, and includes a culminating overnight. Entering it’s 7th year, more than half the children in our Forest Tracker program return again and again, which makes for a grounded, nature-rooted basket to welcome new students each year.  Primitive skills projects, wilderness skills development, and super fun sensory awareness games provide the threads of connection throughout the year.

Instructors in the Forest Tracker program are paid for weekly program instruction, planning/prep time, and the overnight. This program is traditionally staffed by our weekly program staff, and preference will be given to applicants who can work in both programs.

Qualifications we’re looking for:  

  • Passionate about nature connection mentoring with youth
  • Previous work with 8 Shields mentoring model
  • Knowledge and skills with primitive skills, wilderness skills, tracking, bird language, ethnobotony
  • Strong group management and safety skills
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills
  • Excellent organizational and time management skills
  • Current First Aid/CPR certifications

What you embody:

  • Love of the WILD
  • Welcoming and Inclusive 
  • Playful and Fun 
  • Integrity & Maturity
  • Humility & Service-minded
  • Impeccable & Compassionate Communication 
  • Creativity & Collaboration
  • Commitment to Personal & Professional Growth

What we offer:

  • Compensation: We are committed to recruiting and retaining dedicated instructors, and it is reflected in our wages. Multiple job openings may be filled by a single qualified candidate to create a generous part-time salary, subject to with-holdings. Ferry costs are reimbursed for instructors commuting from off-island.  Instructors are eligible for meritorious bonuses at the discretion of the Board.  
  • Benefits: Besides Workmen’s Compensation, here is a small list of the priceless benefits:
    • Be a part of a community that values earth-based wisdom
    • Support others in their journey of deep nature connection
    • Receive support for your own learning and growth

Key Areas of Responsibility:

  • Oversee safety and instruction for youth during weekly nature programs.
  • Work with teaching team to develop weekly lesson plans and related program activities.
  • Meet weekly and seasonally with the Program Director for program planning.
  • Participate in potlucks and overnights each program year.
  • Mentor assistant instructors during programs and planning.
  • Communicate with parents (email, phone calls, in-person, before/after programs) on a weekly basis.
  • Participate in quarterly staff/board/Elder potlucks, monthly staff meetings, on-going staff development trainings, promotional events, and other meetings as requested.

How to Apply: