Tinkergarten is a comprehensive learning program, designed for families with kids who are ages 2 to 8. The program includes weekly live instruction in the form of a group class, at home curriculum and a bevy of resources, including video read-alouds and resources to help parents and caregivers support learning at home.
The weekly live, group class is a beloved, essential part of the program, and Tinkergarten Leaders bring that portion to life each week.
What’s the time commitment?
Tinkergarten offers families four seasons of programming per year and DIY programming during the month of December. Each season runs for 12 weeks. 9 of the 12 weeks include live instruction delivered by a Leader. The other weeks include include DIY programming for families to enjoy on their own.
Leaders commit to leading 9 weeks during each of the 4 seasons. The start and end dates of live session teaching windows for 2021-2022 seasons are as follows:
- Fall (week of Sept. 27- week of Nov. 22*)
- Winter (week of Jan. 10 - week of Mar. 7)
- Spring (week of Apr. 4 - week of May 30)
- Summer (week of June 27 - week of Aug. 22)
(*) classes can be rescheduled around the Thanksgiving holiday.
When Leaders first begin, they dedicate time to four things:
- Listing classes on our website including choosing the days, times and location that you want to lead
- Connecting with teammates (local and national). Leaders are welcome to join a Tinkergarten class at no cost (remains a benefit each season you are active)
- Reaching out within their community to announce that they are bringing Tinkergarten
- Completing the New Leader course.
The New Leader course takes between 10 and 12 hours to complete and can be done at your own pace. Learn more about this beloved course here. The other tasks can be completed over the course of the 5-8 weeks leading up to your first season class.
Once a Leader is all set up, the weekly time commitment varies per Leader but is typically 45-minutes to 1 hour per week to prepare to teach and as follows for each live session that you lead:
- 60 minutes for In-Person
- 30 minutes for At-Home (online).
Each new season, Leaders also complete a 45-minute, self-guided training course designed to prepare you to lead that new season’s curriculum (and get you excited about all of the new lessons to come!).
How many classes can you teach?
Leaders decide on which days and at which times they offer live sessions each season, working hard to keep days and times consistent so families can continue to participate. On average, Leaders offer 2-3 classes per season, but the range varies and can flex to include many more classes once a Leader’s community is established.
Is there flexibility?
Tinkergarten is a progressive program in which kids continue to build on their learning and earn their skill badges season after season. In order to provide that kind of continuity for families, Leaders lead 4 seasons of the year. We understand, though, that life events like adding a new child to your family, moves and family illness happen. We work with Leaders and within the team to provide coverage when a Leader needs to take time off.
Click here, if you are interested in applying to become a Tinkergarten Leader, and apply today!
Know who would make an amazing Tinkergarten Leader? Nominate them!
Read more about how Leaders are compensated for their time and impact here.
To hear Leaders describe their experience in their own words, check out this video.
You can also view images of life as Tinkergarten leader by searching #Tinkergarten and #HappytoLead on Instagram.