Day Camp Collaborator (Counselor)
Tinkering School Day Camp is looking for a rare breed of collaborator/maker/builder/listener/explorer to join us as a Counselor this summer. Our Counselors are people who are as comfortable with a chop saw as they are with cleaning skinned knees. As handy with a hot glue gun as they are with navigating the social emotional needs of six-year-olds. As deft with developmental, social and play-based needs of a ten-year-old as they are with an impact driver or sewing needle. Our Counselors can curate and shape an environment that tilts us all towards engagement, but follows a child’s lead as they explore that environment.
We are looking for candidates with experience in open-ended learning environments and the challenges they present. Kids across ages hang out all day and during every activity. Ideally you can hold space for a five-year-old’s unbelievably fascinating tangential story and talk to an eleven-year-old with the adult tone they crave and deserve. It is essential you firmly believe that children are already whole people with important things to say.
We are hiring 5 to 7 people this summer. We are as eager to talk to bombastic college students as we are to talk to educators with 35 years of experience. We are as eager to talk to master storytellers that can handle a crowd as we are to talk to quiet listeners that will take the time to hear the tiniest voice of the shyest camper. We seek to create a well-rounded group full of adults that children of all inclinations can relate to, build relationships with, and trust. What really matters is a focus on the kids.
Apply to join our team by emailing Karen with your resume, a cover letter, and samples (photos are fine) of some cool project you’ve worked on. Applications accepted on a rolling basis (sooner is better) Submit your application in PDF format only, please.
Roles We are Filling
Candidates will say "That's me!" to any combination of the following skills:
- A five-year-old kid ninja. The flow of their day is different. We need someone on the lookout for their specific needs, gifts, and opportunities to shine.
- A six- and seven-year-old kid ninja. Balls of energy discovering their own competence and dexterity.
- An eight- and nine-year-old kid ninja. Dreamers playing at the edge of possibility.
- A ten- and eleven-year-old kid ninja. Our oldest bunch this year, with a lot to share and a deep urge to be heard and seen.
- A shop master who can handle a drill press and is comfortable guiding a five-year-old through the use of our chop saw.
- A big games czar, with ideas about games that can engage five- to eleven-year-olds side by side on a giant open field. Nothing builds bonds quite as fast as big games played with great sportsmanship,
- A storyteller. Starting the day, over lunch, end of day. Stories bring us together. Stories help kids focus long enough to eat their lunch. Stories teach and set examples. Stories make us a tribe.
- A provocations crafter. The good projects tell us what they look like at the end, But the very best projects simply gets us excited to start.
- A listener. Some kids are shy and don’t usually get a lot of attention. You know how to find those kids, figure out what makes them tick, and can get them engaged.
Building a Camp Together
For the last three summers, we have created a camp that had children and parents thinking about it for the rest of the year. We aren’t even close to settled in our ways. With a small staff of 5-7, we are the camp and the camp is us. We are looking for passionate educators who want to help us grow this program and make it better than ever before.
- Punctual and Reliable.
- Incredibly flexible. Every plan is a starting place and subject to change.
- Experience working with kids ages five to eleven - please specify your sweet spot.
- Excellent communication - practice with non-violent communication a plus.
- Experience with or a desire to teach in a setting that honors the free will and independence of children.
- Additional experience with project-based curriculum design, working with gifted children, knowledge of inclusive special education theory and practice, fine arts, applied arts or any other personal superpowers are welcomed.
While we welcome out-of-town applicants, as a new nonprofit camp we are unable to reimburse the cost of any travel associated with the hiring process or summer housing.
Work Hours and Dates
Our work day runs from 8:30am-5pm. You will only work 8 hours of that day, but for scheduling flexibility you must be available for these hours during the weeks listed below. We have weekly staff meetings that keeps us on the same page and creates space for stories and new ideas.
You will be working with us from 6/13/2016 to 8/24/2016, which includes set up, training and break down.
Camp is in session from 6/20/2016 to 8/19/2016
Starting at $800 (depending on skills and experience) per week.