Our Fall Treasure Hunt season is designed to engage kids in the kind of wondering, exploring, imagining and problem-solving that helps them develop focus, a core Tinkergarten (and life!) skill. To kids, it will all feel like joyful, autumn outdoor play!
Join the fun and learning in either of our formats.
In our first unit of the Treasure Hunt season, kids will activate their senses and their focus skills as they discover the natural treasures in their outdoor spaces.See Sample Lesson
In our second unit, we’ll explore how people across the world and across time have treasured special objects from nature. Our play will focus on the four natural elements: water, earth, fire and air.See Sample Lesson
In our final unit, we’ll share our gratitude for the earth and engage kids and families thinking about how we can care for the natural world.See Sample Lesson
Our Winter, Animal Superheroes season features different creatures using amazing powers for survival as a jumping off point for play and learning—all to help kids develop a skill that we all need to thrive — persistence and grit!
We kick off our Animal Superheroes season with a unit dedicated to three remarkable survivors. Squirrel will help us set up our winter learning space, ice worm will help us remember how to stay warm and husky will remind us to keep moving—and that with enough persistence we can move mountains!See Sample Lesson
During our Hard Workers unit, we'll learn about and play like four creatures who really know how to persist! We'll develop our own grit, imaginations, teamwork and motor skills as we build like beavers, peck like woodpeckers, haul like huskies, and more!
In the final unit of our Animal Superheroes season, we'll shift focus to a special superpower—creativity! We'll pretend and play like hardworking nesting birds and create a celebration fit for all of the animal superheroes we learned about this season (including ourselves!)!See Sample Lesson
Our play-based outdoor curriculum guides parents on how to support an active, engaging, outdoor learning lifestyle for their family. Through live sessions led by Tinkergarten Leaders and on-demand, self-guided activities, we make purposeful, outdoor play doable for every family.
We love the program, and the ideas of activities to do during the week.
Teacher Kari goes through the lesson in a focused, but unrushed manner which leaves plenty of room for kids to participate fully. Being able to have a class with Teacher Kari while located in a different part of the country is the best thing to come out of virtual classes.
I love Tinkergarten and I feel our instructor, Jessica, is truly amazing! Her enthusiasm and joy are wonderful and make the class delightful!
I really appreciate the way Sasha consistently celebrates the children and encourages them to follow their instincts, including when they take things in unexpected directions. I love the safe space for exploration and being oneself that she holds for all involved. Sasha's session today was engaging and fun. She is creating strong connections with the children. We are very grateful and had a wonderful time.
Kaari is so high-energy/positive and great at reminding the kids what they already learned and also at staying on track with the lesson. I have two preschoolers and that last part feels impossible for me most days.
Ms Jamie keeps everything so light and fun. It's a no pressure environment thanks to her, which makes my children more comfortable expressing themselves!
Just great flow, pacing, energy, balance, seeing other kids, seeing Jenna, the songs, the visuals, etc. Technology and resources and planning all are working smoothly to give a great experience.
Teacher got into the active part of class early, engaged each student personally, and was able to impart guidance and ideas to parents while keeping the group on track. Loved the gratitude song and acknowledgement of indigenous peoples and lands.
Hannah! She's so engaging and she's able to engage my 2-year-old, who doesn't sit still for anything! This past week, my 2-year-old has been showcasing what she's learned by asking if we are sad, happy, mad. Blown away she understands these concepts!
I must admit, I was curious to see how engaging a whole session about feelings would be, but Ray absolutely loved it! Wonderful curriculum and Becky is terrific! I can't imagine a better person to take on preschoolers over Zoom. We are very lucky to be in her class.
5! Great class today! Our family really enjoyed learning about such a relatable animal...the rabbit! The class also seemed to flow so nicely as Ms. Angelina incorporated photos, video examples, and play throughout the lesson. I also loved playing the remaining kindergarten song as the exit. My daughter has been playing burrows, rabbits, and predators all morning! animal...the rabbit! The class also seemed to flow so nicely as Ms. Angelina incorporated photos, video examples, and play throughout the lesson. I also loved playing the remaining kindergarten song as the exit. My daughter has been playing burrows, rabbits, and predators all morning!
My son is always excited to see what Katie has planned for the session, and the things they do inspire him to try new or related things the rest of the day/week. Katie makes things fun, engaging, and interactive.
Madelyn always notices and acknowledges every explorer—my child really loves interacting with her. This lesson was so fun—loved acting like chimpanzees and making all kinds of faces. Love that it is okay that my child didn't want to touch the mud today. She was still able to participate fully and had a wonderful experience!
The class was great!; Christina is so enthusiastic and attends to everyone participating. And this is not an easy task for any teacher meeting her students on ZOOM.
Loved the combination of mud/puddy play with learning about emotions. I think my daughter really understood the part about looking at people's faces to tell how they are feeling :)
We love it. The class is great! Wouldn’t change a thing.
Kari was a very friendly and interactive teacher, it can't be easy to wrangle young kids virtually. And my daughter absolutely loved making her happiness potion. She told her father about it the second she saw him.
We have been struggling with how to handle some big emotions lately, and using body movement is something I hadn't thought about before. I'm looking forward to trying it out! Also play is such a great way to introduce a topic like that. Also, we just had so much fun with the puppets. Tinkergarten always delivers on new play ideas and tools to help in everyday life.
Tinkergarten classes follow a predictable structure designed to build a strong sense of community, connect participants to nature, and introduce lessons that support our 8 core skills. You can read more about them in this article or sign up for a free trial to see for yourself!
We will follow one, intentional approach to safety in all of our in-person Tinkergarten programming. This approach is informed by CDC recommendations for operating youth and summer camps and aims to ensure that everyone has as engaged, joyful, and safe an experience as possible. Read more about our safety approach here.
Yes, visit our What We Offer page to learn more about our in-person class program and to search to see if in-person classes are available in your area.
Yes, all of Tinkergarten’s In-Person programs take place in delightful, outdoor settings. As part of the program, families receive coaching on both the gear and the mindset that make outdoor play fun, healthy and joyful all year long. Visit tinkergarten.com/winter to learn more!
In the rare case that weather conditions are unsafe at the time of your live session (e.g. lightning, too cold), your Leader will either reschedule your in-person class session or will welcome you to utilize the pre-recorded class content and resources while they play safely at home.
Join our Tinkergarten At Home program! All you need is a connected device to participate in live, online sessions any day of the week. Classes are led by an expert Tinkergarten Leader, and you'll receive resources to continue the outdoor play all week long. You can also nominate someone in your community who would make a great Tinkergarten Leader (or apply yourself!).
Please note that we gradually expand our in-person classes each season, and will continue to expand our reach in seasons to come.
Click here and enter your zip code at the top to see if classes are available in your area. We'll continue to expand our reach in seasons to come.
Yes! Families can apply for 50% or 100% off the cost of one child's full season fee in either format, At Home or In Person, via tinkergarten.com/grant. The online application takes under 1 minute to complete and includes no ask for financial information—if a family takes the time to apply, they qualify for our support. We reserve 3% of all spots in our classes nationwide to award as grants and award them on a first-come-first-served basis. Once you apply, you should hear back from our team within one week. If a grant is still available when you apply, we will send you a code to receive the grant when you register.
If you need any assistance or have questions, please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Most weeks, families just need to bring water bottles and seasonally appropriate layers. On a few special lessons, families may be asked to bring a few household items for their child(ren) to use safely along with the materials provided by their Tinkergarten Leader. To help you plan, enrolled families receive a Season Program Overview that includes the short list of materials you’ll need each week!
We love to play in (nearly) all weather at Tinkergarten. But, in the case of unsafe weather, your Leader will update families at least 90 minutes prior to class by email and text message. Families will either be offered an alternative time to meet during the same week or will be welcome to utilize the prerecorded lesson content available in their My Tinkergarten (parent dashboard). If more than 2 sessions need to be canceled, families will be eligible for a refund for those additional sessions. Read all of our in-person class policies here.
Each week, in addition the live session, families are given access to: three at-home activities which build on the live lesson; a related video read-aloud; a pre-recorded class session; and a tip-of-the-week designed to help parents and caregivers facilitate their kiddos’ play at home (and laugh a little, too).
Tinkergarten In-Person sessions are designed for grown-ups and child(ren) to experience together. To provide for the safety of all enrolled, children attend along with an adult from their own household or pod.
Yes! Our mixed-aged classes are the perfect experience to enjoy with siblings. Siblings under 12 months of age may join at no cost. Siblings over one year should enroll in the class, and a 30% sibling discount is automatically applied at checkout.
As is stated in our approach to health and safety, Tinkergarten does not require that attendees wear masks. We do recommend wearing face masks for people who are not vaccinated, over the age of two and are not otherwise exempted from wearing masks. In some cases, the location at which Tinkergarten class meets does require attendees to wear masks. Before your class starts, we will clearly communicate by email and on our My Tinkergarten (parent dashboard) if there is a mask requirement at your location.
Numerous studies link exposure to nature with enhanced physical, social and cognitive outcomes for kids. And because nature is both calming and stimulating for kids, it provides an ideal environment for learning!
Tinkergarten At Home combines a live, online session facilitated by a certified (and amazing) Tinkergarten Leader with additional resources that parents and caregivers can use to keep kids playing and learning outdoors all week long. The program, which is designed by education experts, engages children in play-based activities that foster a sense of joy and wonder, all while developing essential skills.
Each live session follows a structure that includes community building, songs, movement, learning about nature, guided play time, and a closing community share time. We also have tools families can use to upload photos of the play that continues at home between live class sessions so Leaders and the whole class community can celebrate your child and family's play!
Every Tinkergarten lesson is designed to inspire open-ended exploration and play through which kids actively engage in imagining, exploring, and/or problem solving.
While each lesson is designed by Tinkergarten and guided by a trained Leader, the children decide how to play in response to the lesson's play scenario, and the children's interests play the leading role in shaping the way play unfolds. To kids, it's pure and joyful fun.
Our current programs are designed for children ages 2 to 8. Leaders take time to get to know each child and adapt our approach to best fit the child's interests, strengths and needs. To make sure that the live session and additional resources are as engaging as possible, we also tailor our program towards two different age groups: 2 to 5 and 5 to 8. Read more here about how the classes differ by age group.
Tinkergarten, by design, is a multi-age program flexible enough to support kids of all ages. So, please feel free to bring younger students to an older age range class, especially if they will have the support and modeling of an older sibling! Likewise, Leaders can support older children within a younger class, offering them the chance to play the role of teacher and leader-helper.
At Tinkergarten, we refer to adults as 'Guides' — and we support you as you support your child's unique learning process. Here's how:
It's Easy to Support Your Kids
Each week before your class you will be notified by email what few household materials kids will need for the live session. You'll also get access to additional resources including a read-aloud and three easy activities to do during the week after the live session to keep the learning going at home!
Adults are most welcome to participate alongside their children during live sessions. Tinkergarten classes are designed to support kids and adults in playful learning together.
If you do plan to step away during class, try to be available at the start and end of the session so kids are set up and you are set up for the week after class. If online, make sure you practice using Zoom with your child beforehand, too.
Adults Learn at Tinkergarten Too! Each week, we’ll provide you with resources that help you learn more about how kids learn through outdoor play—actionable insights that you can put to use every day!
Yes! If you are new to Tinkergarten, we welcome you to try a free online class. Available throughout the week, complimentary classes are a great way to experience a taste of the program firsthand.