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Get outside & learn

Healthy, educational and fun kids classes, in your community.
Not in Virginia?
Tinkergarten® provides engaging early childhood education in the healthiest classroom of all—the outdoors. We match families with leaders in their local community who offer activity-based kids classes that help them develop the skills that matter most—all while having fun!
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“Is TODAY a Tinkergarten day?”
“It's the first time he's ever asked to keep taking a class once it was over.”
Molly testimonial  Molly, Mother of a 4-year old

Our Classes

Our classes

Experts know that the early years of a child’s life are all-important when it comes to determining the adult they will become. They also know that independent exploration and well-designed play-based activities are key to learning self reliance, creativity, problem solving and a host of other skills.

Tinkergarten® classes are based on a flexible curriculum that changes to suit children's ages, the geographic location and the season. Classes take place in outdoor green spaces across America all year round, and are available for kids aged from 18 months to 8 years of age.

Here's what our parents think...
"We like the sense of flow—the class is peaceful and not overly-structured. If your child finds something of interest that doesn't necessarily fit the lesson, you don't feel obligated to refocus their attention. The leaders and the program meet the child where they are. It's amazing—I find my child more creative because of Tinkergarten."
Gretchen, Mom of a 2-year-old
“Yesterday's class was a HUGE hit with [my daughter]. I'm so pleased. When we registered for our first Tinkergarten class she was still afraid of grass. These days she has long picnics on the great lawn and makes little houses out of twigs and leaves!”
Nina, Mom of a 2-year-old
"As a working mother I don't always have time to prepare activities for my child. Tinkergarten activities require minimal to no preparation, and can be done ANYWHERE! I also love that each activity has a "why?" and a "how?" component. As an educator, it's really important to me that my kid engages in activities that encourage deep learning through play. It's great to know what the activities encourage and how to actually implement them."
Sherian, Mom of a 3-year-old
“The kids have new adventures every week. The teachers are warm, encouraging of independence. Most importantly, [my kids] can't wait for class to come around again each week.”
Catherine, Mom of 1, 3, 5 and 7 year olds
"It's the unforced quality which seems so rare to me...Tinkergarten activities feel fun and child-driven, and even though they're 'good for us', they just feel like the best kind of play. I feel grateful for Tinkergarten!”
Krista, Mom of 2 and 4 year olds
"I learned how and when to step back and let my son be himself in certain situations. That was a lesson that I needed so much as a parent. Not only did [my leader] provide a useful lesson, it was life changing."
Anne, Mom of a 3-year-old
ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS: Become a Tinkergarten Leader
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Tinkergarten® classes are led by dedicated parents and active community members – people just like you who decided they wanted to bring this rich experience to families in their area. Leading a Tinkergarten Class is a rewarding way to contribute to local life while earning an income. Learn about becoming a Tinkergarten® Leader.
DIY Tinkergarten Activities

At the heart of every Tinkergarten® class are activities that have been developed, tested and honed by our team of experts. Because we believe all children should be learning outside, we freely share our activities. That means you can try them out with your family even if classes are not yet offered in your community.

All Tinkergarten activities share three core ingredients: optimal learning conditions, design for engagement, and skills that matter. We draw on a collection of instructional influences and even sprinkle in some best practices in game mechanics, social engagement and cognitive development. Parents have told us that Tinkergarten activities make them feel like a kid again. And to their kids, they are just plain fun!

Browse DIY activities