What Does the New Leader Course Entail?

The New Leader Course

Every new Leader is required to complete our New Leader Course.

Our New Leader course is a self-led, online course designed to inspire and prepare you to lead Tinkergarten with confidence and joy. It is one of the highlights of most Leaders' experiences and is often sited as "life changing." Our training team learns from the Leaders who participate as well, making it one of our favorite parts of our work as well. 

Feedback from Leaders:

"Thank you for all the wonderful trainings throughout the years. The trainings I had in child development deeply impacted the way I think about teaching." —Nicole, Leader for 14 seasons

"There is just nothing better than the Tinkergarten Leader training. I would love to refer parents and myself to a paid offering of the child development portion of the training. It gave such a richness to my experience as a mother." —Ellen, Leader for 8 seasons


The New Leader course consists of 5 modules:

  • Tinkergarten Mission, Program Design and Impact
  • Community Outreach—How to Engage and Build Local Community
  • Child Development—Supporting Explorers (kids ups) in our Program
  • Adult Development—Supporting Guides (grown ups) in our Program
  • Supporting All Learners—Striving for Justice in our Work

How the New Leader course works:

Using our learning management system, we make it possible for Leaders to watch course material from any internet connected device at their own pace. We also support learning with asynchronous discussions (e.g. our discussion forum and New Leader Facebook Groups) and through optional group discussion sessions and one required, 2- hour live discussion session.

The New Leader course must be completed by the completion date associated with the first season in which a new Leader would like to lead.

Live discussion sessions are offered with a range of times during the day and in evenings. All other aspects of the course can be completed at whichever times and at whichever pace you like, as long as they are completed by the course completion date required to lead in the upcoming season.