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After-School & Weekend
Outdoor Educator

Wilderness Kids Alexandria seeks experienced Outdoor Educators for our After-School and Weekend Outing Programs with middle school students. 

You are the right person for this role if you are:

  • An adult (>18 years old) who is passionate about nature and about sharing it with young people.

  • Experienced working with young people in or out of the classroom--as a teacher, camp counselor, coach, or other youth worker.

  • Passionate about and skilled with working with young people from low income families, with immigrant children, and with children from the BIPOC community. Your passion and skill may come from having worked with such children before and/or from living experiences similar to those of the young people we serve.

  • Joyful when you are outside and comfortable among spiders and snakes. You have skills and knowledge to share. Perhaps you can identify plants and trees, identify the call of a bird, share the best way to set up a tent or tarp, or otherwise share your enthusiasm for the natural world.

  • Prepared to respond to emergencies in outdoor settings that are not far removed from emergency medical care. (In other words, you have some First Aid training, perhaps even Wilderness First Aid certification.)

  • Can follow, or even devise, lesson plans that build and encourage knowledge, skill, passion, fitness, or life balance among our young people.

  • (Preferred) A licensed driver with a good driving record and access to a car.

 

What you will do:

After-School

  • Every Wednesday and Friday during the school year lead a group of 12 to 15 middle-school students in outdoor education programming in coordination with another Wilderness Kids staff member. Note: We hope to increase the opportunities to include Tuesday and Thursday as well but this is not currently confirmed.

  • Lead students in activities that may include observing, drawing, writing, playing games, learning about flora and fauna, learning about watersheds or water cycles, learning about camping gear and LNT practices, and so on.

  • Follow the curriculum provided by Wilderness Kids and/or develop your own lesson plans in coordination with the Wilderness Kids Program Director.

  • Ensure the physical and emotional safety of children in the program.

  • Programs run from approximately 3:00 p.m to 5:30 p.m., and you will be expected to be available for at least 15 minutes before and after the start of the program. 

Weekends

  • Two or three times per month, lead a group of 15 to 20 middle-school students on a longer Saturday or Sunday outing to a natural area in the greater DMV area (e.g. Great Falls, Billy Goat Trail, Huntley Meadows, Prince William Forest, etc). 

  • Perform similar programming to the After-School program over the course of approximately five hours. Perhaps coordinate the efforts of “expert” partners, such as climbing or paddling instructors. 

 

What is Wilderness Kids Alexandria:

  • Wilderness Kids began programming in October 2021. You are on the ground floor of this effort! 

  • Our mission is to provide teenagers from under-resourced families in Alexandria with life-enriching experiences in nature.  

  • Our efforts rest upon findings that time spent in nature improves both mental and physical health as well as offering other benefits.

  • Our young people are from low-income or otherwise under-resourced families in Alexandria and are in grades 6 through 12. We serve primarily middle-school students at this point.

  • In 2022-23, we are offering an After-School Program, longer monthly outings, and a Summer 2023 “Peak” Experience, farther afield from Alexandria.

  • Wilderness Kids is founded upon seven values: Nature as Home, Gratitude, Self-Expression, Equity in Community, Curiosity, Skill, and Mindfulness. We impart these values in everything that we do. 

  • You’ll find more about us on our website at www.wildernesskidsalexandria.org

 

We hope to have staff whose life experiences resonate with our young people and strongly encourage applications from members of the immigrant and BIPOC communities.

 

To apply:

Please complete this form, which takes the place of a cover letter and which will also request you to upload your resume.

 

Note: Background checks will be required for all staff, to ensure the safety of our young people.

 

Thank you for applying.

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