Summer Camp Instructor
This position is for one summer, from June 24 to August 9th, plus an additional week of training and prep before the summer camp begins. For the specific dates of each program, please check our website. We have two different camp programs occurring sequentially. We will consider applicants who want to teach both camps, or who want to teach only one. The first two weeks are Being Animals Camp for children ages 4-7, held at a school in Beverly indoors and out on the trails. The campers spend each morning imagining they are a different local animal and moving to move, eat, relate, and seek shelter like that animal. Being Animals is a half day program. The last four weeks are Survival Rockport for 7-12 year olds, held in the woods in Rockport, away from any buildings or plumbing. The campers spend their full day out learning survival skills and naturalist skills in our unique story based, playful student-led format. While the campers are allowed a lot of freedom and responsibility and are allowed to use knives and fire, and come away with significant skills, there is also a lighthearted and playful feel to the program. We are in the wilderness and we are learning to eat wild foods and survive, but we are rarely uncomfortable, and we do bring some modern conveniences, including s’mores. We end each day on a public beach that we travel to on foot. The Survival Rockport camp is staffed in the field by only two instructors, so they need to be comfortable managing all kinds of challenge and situation, administering first aid, and serving as open water lifeguards.
Principal Duties and Responsibilities:
Collaborate with other instructor/ Program Director to help design and deliver nature based adventure camp programs
Facilitate holistic programs that are more than a collection of activities and that are thoughtfully and intentionally designed to progress logically throughout the week and to be meaningful
Facilitate group building activities throughout the week, building a strong and cohesive team that values everyone’s voices, ideas, and needs
Serve as a mentor to campers, getting to know them as individuals and supporting their needs
Lead up to 5 miles of hiking per day (at Survival Rockport)
Administer first aid as needed for injuries and illness, and document all care given
Serve as a lifeguard during our daily beach swims.
Maintain an environment that balances freedom and safety, with safety being the number one priority
•Undergraduate or advanced degree in education or environmental field, or equivalent experience
•2 or more years experience teaching children in classroom and/or field settings, or experience as a field naturalist or biologist along with a natural affinity for education and a high comfort level instructing young children
Excellent outdoor and survival skills. You need not possess all survival skills, but we are looking for someone who has something to bring to the table, such as tracking, wild edibles, matchless fires, tool making, shelter construction, knot tying, group building initiatives, or any other valuable outdoor skill
Strong swimming and hiking abilities. Must be able to swim in open water
Knowledge of New England Natural History
•Comfort with all forms of local wildlife
• Trust in children’s ability to construct learning and meaning for themselves with guidance, and ability to provide flexible enough learning experiences to allow them to do so
•Comfort handling small, harmless wildlife, including insects, reptiles, and amphibians, including snakes
• A supportive and non-punitive approach to group and behavior management
•Ability to carry up to 30 pounds, and to walk uphill on or off trails up to 4 miles a day, in all weather (though we rarely walk more than a mile on any program)
•Willingness to work as long as 9-10 hours on extra long days, with most days extending 8 hours from 8am-4pm
•Strong concern for the natural environment and an interest in working towards its protection by educating young people
•Current Wilderness First Aid, CPR, and Lifeguard Training or willingness to obtain these at own expense: These are an absolute must.
• Ability to teach and make decisions as part of a collaborative teams
• Enthusiasm for the process of teaching and willingness to be a reflective educator, constantly fine tuning your skills and lesson plans and working with colleagues to give and receive honest feedback
Please email a resume and cover letter, detailing why you are interested in Kestrel specifically, and how your skills and experience meet the qualifications of the position to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pay Rate: Starting pay is $15-$17 per hour depending on education and experience level. Flexible schedule, supportive work environment, unique programming, time outdoors, and dedicated, passionate colleagues. The Kestrel office is located in downtown Gloucester, Massachusetts.
About Kestrel: Kestrel Educational Adventures is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based out of our office in Beverly, Massachusetts. We offer place-based natural science adventures for schools, camps, and the general public. Our participants learn through direct experiences in the local natural world, guided by qualified instructors with flexible plans. We believe in building a better and more sustainable world through excellent, student – centered natural science education. Our program instructors guide children in developing their abilities to make and share original discoveries and understand complex natural systems. We believe that everyone should develop their own values through experience, and that this is the most powerful route to sustainability and conservation action. We teach everyone that they should wander, explore, touch, imagine, and live in the natural world. Silliness, muddiness, and storytelling are as much a part of our day as collecting and analyzing data. In addition to our school programs, we operate summer camps including a young naturalists and storytelling camp in Beverly Farms, and a primitive survival camp in Rockport. Kestrel is a very small organization with an excellent and dedicated group of staff and volunteers. Because of our small size, we do not have any full time, year round positions available, or any staff housing facilities. We do have a great place to work and lots of opportunities to learn. And chocolate.