Become a Tinkergarten Leader


Tinkergarten Leaders facilitate outdoor classes where kids learn through play. If you are inspired to bring high quality education to families in your community, we’d love to meet you.

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Contribute Meaningfully

Life is too short not to love the work you do. Help kids get the start they deserve, and parents the support they need by bringing families together to learn in the best classroom of all—the outdoors.

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Flexible Work

Make additional income and set your own schedule. If you’ve got kids, you can bring them to work, too!

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Extraordinary Training

Become part of a talented and supportive team, receive comprehensive training in early childhood development, adult development, community outreach, and much more.

“What's it like to lead?”

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Tinkergarten Leaders share their experience
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“I’ve got a whole new definition of what work can be. I spend my time helping kids and parents in my community, and I’m learning more about myself than I ever have. I’m outdoors more, I get exercise, get messy and laugh, and my son tags along with me—I can’t believe I get paid to do this!”

Beth Ashley

Tinkergarten Leader, Brooklyn, NY

Who can become a Tinkergarten Leader?

Tinkergarten leaders bring a wide range of experiences and talents to this work. You don’t need any formal teaching experience to be a successful leader. What you do need is:

  • A passion and joy for play
  • Love of the natural world and your community
  • A natural ability to connect with kids and adults
  • A supportive, team spirit

How flexible is the work?

You choose the time, location and amount of classes to run, so the scope of time commitment is up to you. If you are a parent, you are always welcome to bring your kids to class (for free!) when you lead. Training takes place online—choose from day or evening sessions to ensure you can balance the work with life outside of Tinkergarten.

What can I earn as a Tinkergarten Leader?

Leaders can earn between $300 and $1000 for each 8-week class they lead, depending on their location (e.g. major cities vs. more remote areas). Most leaders choose to run multiple classes each season, and continue across each of the 4 scheduled seasons in a calendar year. If you apply to become a leader, we will walk you through your expected income range in your specific location.

Leaders who demonstrate continued commitment and success can also apply to play additional roles for Tinkergarten—park liaisons, leader mentors and more. These leaders can earn up to $2500 monthly in addition to their class compensation.

New Leader Certification

There is no upfront fee required to become a fully certified Tinkergarten leader. Tinkergarten leaders need only to commit to offering classes consistently in their community, and they will start earning money after launching their first successful class.

Tinkergarten makes a significant investment in preparing and equipping new leaders to deliver the highest possible quality experience to families in their communities. This includes delivering our intensive, online New Leader Course, providing a set of high-quality teaching materials that leaders use season after season, and offering ongoing coaching and support. To help us defray the cost of support to our leaders and remain sustainable, we deduct $100 from a leader’s earned compensation in each of their first two successful seasons for a total leader certification fee of $200.

As long as a leader continues to run successful classes, Tinkergarten provides them with all necessary curriculum, teaching materials, customized technology tools, ongoing training, mentorship, marketing and enrollment support, coverage of any site fees, insurance, and a high touch leader support team—all at no additional cost, every season.

More about the New Leader Course

The New Leader Course is designed similar to a college course, is delivered online over a four week period, and includes five modules:

  • Tinkergarten Philosophy
  • Community Outreach
  • Child Development
  • Adult Development
  • Facilitating high quality child-centered, play-based learning in nature.

When can I start?

New leaders are eligible to join a new monthly training cohort of Tinkergarten Leaders to prepare for the upcoming season. See the dates of upcoming cohorts.

Great, how do I get started?

Click the “Apply Now” button on this page to fill out our online application. A member of our team will review your application within 24 hours and then reach out to you to walk you through the next steps. There is no commitment needed to apply.

We know leading is not a fit for everyone, but everyone knows someone who would make a great Tinkergarten leader. Share the opportunity with them!

Know someone who would be a perfect Tinkergarten leader? Share the opportunity with them!