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We've filled this position, but check back when we're hiring again!

Looking for playful, responsible, nature-loving educators/guides to lead outdoor classes

for Wednesdays, 1 pm – 6 pm, September 2024 – June 2025

Brooklyn Wild, a small nature and adventure play program in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, is seeking a part-time Lead Facilitator for our all-outdoor afterschool class for PreK – 5th grade. Our team is playful, creative, reliable, flexible, and patient. We are comfortable working outdoors every day, in all kinds of weather, and have a deep respect for children’s autonomy and individuality. This is not your typical afterschool class! Applicants must be interested in using the philosophy of playwork (paid training provided), find joy in nature experiences and treat children as people with valid feelings and ideas.


In the past, this role has been a great match for folks with interests in the arts and teaching artists, therapists and social workers, nature educators, environmental scientists, playworkers, anthropologists, educators with a background in democratic schools, emergent curriculums and progressive education.

Our facilitators bring their passion, creativity and warmth to every class. Fun, flexible and patient, they don't provide structured activities. Instead, they build relationships and respond non-judgmentally to children's ideas and needs. They hold the boundaries for physical and emotional safety while welcoming children’s contributions. A typical day might include building forts, throwing a ball, storing supplies, watching quietly, identifying birds, taking a walk, reading aloud, making worm homes, climbing, tying knots, mediating discussions, and talking about what we love. Playworkers balance being deeply present for individual children “in the moment” while observing the class and site as a whole. Effective communication with other team members and adult caregivers is essential.



  • Help create and uphold a space and time conducive to free play

  • Be willing to train in the philosophy of playwork and demonstrate professionalism and best practices, including:

  • Respond to challenging behavior with compassion, respect and reasonable choices

  • Respect children's choices and ideas

  • Be willing to learn and grow through the reflective process 

  • Ensure the safety of all participants through observation, risk-benefit assessments, an understanding of the weather and positive conflict resolution

  • Be knowledgeable about safety in all weather, or be willing to train for this knowledge

  • Maintain equipment and prepare class materials, including lifting or carrying up to 50 pounds

  • Conduct daily written reflection on play activities, take photos and attend monthly staff meetings

  • Commute with students to green and blue spaces via walking and public transit

  • Help students with their gear and snack, following all safety guidelines  

  • Be an advocate for free play and nature connection with parents and neighbors

  • Be willing to accept and act upon feedback, work through challenges as a team, and keep the children’s best interests at heart


Necessary qualifications:

  • Flexibility, adaptability and patience

  • Punctuality and reliability, excellent time management and the ability to problem-solve independently

  • Eighteen years or older with at least two years of experience working with children between the ages of 3 and 10.

  • Some experience managing groups, such as in a camp or classroom

  • Some experience with nature education or environmental science or deep experience with nature-based hobbies

  • Familiarity with the benefits of independent play

  • Ability to communicate and collaborate with a team, and willingness to change and improve through reflection and professional development

  • CPR and First Aid certification, or the ability to acquire these certifications before employment

  • Must pass a background and reference check


Highly desirable, but not required:

  • Fluency in Spanish, Mandarin, ASL or another language besides English

  • Photography and video editing skills

  • Outdoor skills such as knot-tying, building shelters or carpentry

  • A knowledge and interest in outdoor experiences such as camping, hiking and exploring

  • Knowledge of local Brooklyn flora, fauna, history and waterways

  • Familiarity or experience with alternative educational models such as forest schools, democratic schools, nature schools, unschooling or emergent curricula 


Benefits and schedule:​

  • Pay is $24 - $28/hour for lead facilitators, depending on experience

  • 1 paid class day off per semester after 60 days of employment 

  • Wednesdays, 1 pm - 6 pm, for the 2024-2025 school year is required

  • Potential additional hours includes school holiday classes, weekend classes, additional after school hours and summer camp


To apply, please send a cover letter, resume, and three references to


Brooklyn Wild is a mission-driven, low-profit LLC in Sunset Park, Brooklyn that offers the space, time, and permission for children to lead their own play while connecting with nature and community. We operate classes using the principles of forest schools and adventure playgrounds, and advocate for all children’s rights to respect, autonomy, free play and access to the outdoors. Visit to find out more about our program.

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