Annual Teacher-in-Residence Job Description (10.5 months)
Residential "live-on-the-ranch" paid position including cabin housing and food provided.
Interested in helping children connect with nature?
Slide Ranch is a non-profit farm-based environmental education organization located within the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, on coastal wildlands just 25 minutes north of San Francisco. The mission of Slide Ranch is to connect children to nature. We cultivate healthy bodies and minds and foster future generations of environmental stewards. By farming, cooking, caring for animals and exploring wilderness and the coast, we teach people of all ages to see the connection between their own health, a healthy food system and a healthy environment.
Slide Ranch’s Teacher-in-Residence (TIR) program fosters and inspires the next generation of leaders in education, sustainable farming and environmental stewardship. Apply for a 10-1/2 month position that supports your growth as an educator and steward, as you pursue a meaningful career.
The annual Teacher-in-Residence program trains seven emerging environmental leaders through a residential, hands-on teaching position that includes daily teaching as well as ongoing training in organic gardening, animal husbandry, sustainable organic farming, facilities maintenance, wildlands stewardship and nonprofit management. Our teaching philosophy fosters an experiential, student-centered and nature-centered approach, applying scientific practices, and the values of diversity, equity, inclusion. TIRs are also students in daily afternoon sessions focused on professional development and group reflection.
As a Teacher-in-Residence, you will grow as a leader while living and working with a dynamic group of about 20 community members on a rural, coastal farm within the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. Teachers-in-Residence customize and lead programs for Bay Area school and community groups from a wide range of backgrounds, with special emphasis on Title I schools and underserved communities, as well as weekend family programs and summer day camps. Experiential education programs include both day and overnight visits, exploring the farm (pasture with sheep and goats, chickens, ducks, beehives and an organic garden), trails and tide pools and cooking from the garden.
Teachers-in-Residence also learn about the operation of a nonprofit organization, help with fundraising projects, and provide support for various volunteer and fundraising events. Teachers will participate in creating curriculum, and potentially also photos, video clips or blog entries that appear on our website and other social media.
The central focus of this position is on teaching. Programs serve preschool through adult visitors, with the majority being elementary school-aged children. The work week typically involves 5 teaching days. Most programs are 1 day visits (10am- 2pm) and we also offer overnight programs in which teachers work with the group for two or more days and lead an evening campfire. Overnight programs do not require TIRs to camp or supervise the group at night. Program formats vary seasonally. In spring and fall, the focus is on school, community group, volunteer and family programs, with a Tuesday-Saturday work week. Summer months are focused on our day camp program, with a Monday-Friday work week.
In addition to teaching, you will receive training in environmental education, maintaining a small farm and stewarding national park land. A rotating teaching schedule means periodically supporting garden and ranch projects, including full days when you will cover all the farm chores and milk the goats at night. Slide Ranch is a 501c3 and throughout the year you will lead tours and help facilitate volunteer work projects with individuals and groups during corporate, donor and community volunteer events to support the organization. Slide Ranch is located in 134 acres of coastal public parkland and it is open to hikers during daylight hours, so as a residential staff member you will share responsibility in providing basic orientation to visitors.
The position begins with a 3-week orientation and training period, including introductions to the bioregion, farm chores, and foundations of environmental education practice at Slide Ranch led by Slide Ranch staff as well as outside experts. Our trainings and teaching practices are influenced by BEETLES, a program of the Lawrence Hall of Science at UC Berkeley. A typical work day includes morning farm chores and preparation for program, teaching a program from 10am-2pm, followed by an afternoon training session from 3:30-5pm. Afternoon sessions, led by permanent staff, blend ongoing training with hands-on opportunities to learn through work projects. These afternoon sessions include teacher meetings on curriculum, educator skill building and planning, garden and animal husbandry, and farm and environmental maintenance and stewardship. Several teaching observations and ongoing coaching and mentoring by program staff complement the position. About once a month during the school year, a professional development day provides opportunities for teachers to visit related environmental education, farm, or urban agriculture or food systems organizations in the Bay Area. Additionally, for one week, each Teacher-in-Residence has the opportunity to design and implement an independent project that contributes to Slide Ranch and allows for deeper skill building.
Farm and Community Life
Teachers are responsible for a daily, ~30 minute ranch chore and night-time goat-milking on a rotating basis. In addition, teachers will have residential community responsibilities outside of the work day, including a weekly residential chore, cooking dinner for fellow residents with a partner twice each month, and monthly resident meetings.
This position requires a collaborative and positive spirit to work with a team of teaching peers, organization staff, and residents. The successful candidate will possess a great attitude and strong motivation to experience all facets of the job as important to one’s learning and development. A successful candidate will also possess a growth mindset, with a desire to set goals, reflect, and provide feedback to the rest of the team. Applicants must be comfortable living in rustic accommodations.
Prior experience in education or working with children.
Desire to learn about and practice farming and land stewardship.
Awareness of multicultural environmental education and issues related to the urban environment and current local, regional and global events.
Dedication to diversity, equity, and inclusion in teaching and learning.
Flexibility, enthusiasm, creativity, curiosity, and positive attitude.
Eagerness to engage students of various ages with an interactive, student-centered teaching approach.
High level of personal responsibility in work and professionalism when dealing with the public and colleagues.
Ability to take initiative and adopt a solution-oriented approach, while understanding the value of teamwork.
Excellent communication skills and ability to accept supervision and guidance.
Interest in supporting nonprofit organizations, including participating in fundraising activities, volunteer programs and donor events.
Multilingualism, especially Spanish language, is a plus.
Duties are performed in a hilly and rural outdoor setting and can be physically demanding, including outdoor teaching in all weather, manual labor such as shoveling, lifting up to 40 lbs, and farm chores outside of an 8-hour day.
In addition to paid compensation, we provide cabin housing, local, organic food, paid vacation and sick time.
No phone calls, please. Email a single PDF document including:
1) Your resume
2) A one-page cover letter (see below)
3) Contact info for 3 references
Applications are accepted starting August 2019, until all positions are filled. For best consideration, apply by September 15, 2019. Applicants must be at least 18 years old to apply.
In the cover letter, please indicate why you are interested in this position. We encourage you to describe any professional or personal experience you think may be relevant, including working with youth, additional languages besides English, previous experience living in a residential community, and any unique skills or diversity you would bring to this team. We are also interested in any farm, garden or wilderness experience you may have. Please indicate in your application where you saw this internship posting.
We will begin interviewing applicants after September 15th, and all applicants will be notified by email when the positions have been filled. Applications will be accepted until all positions are filled.
Please note that Slide Ranch aims to increase diversity in our staff and support a Teacher-in-Residence cohort that reflects the demographics of our San Francisco Bay Area community. People of all colors, cultures, class, age, genders, and sexual orientations are encouraged to apply.
Dates of Session: January 20, 2020 – November 24, 2020
Attn: Education Director
2025 Shoreline Hwy
Muir Beach, CA 94965
Email (preferred): firstname.lastname@example.org