The Nature Preschool Teacher is responsible for creating learning goals for children that support our inquiry and nature-based developmental program for preschool children with an emphasis on the outdoor environment as an outdoor classroom learning opportunity and setting for children. The Nature Preschool Teacher goals are to encourage students’ awareness, understanding, appreciation and protection of the environment, foster empathy and kindness towards others, and build a strong foundation of learning through hands on sensory experiences, constructing their knowledge, and skill building in all areas of child development.
The Nature Preschool Teacher is the classroom Teacher and works under the direct supervision of the Nature Teacher 1 (Lead), Preschool Director, and Assistant Director.
1. Assists with supervision of 24 children daily overseeing children’s social-emotional and physical needs of the classroom learning community.
2. Ensure the supervision, safety and well-being of children and classroom teaching team daily including moving staff with children as they change locations throughout the day.
3. Welcome and greet each child and family at arrival and departure time daily.
4. Begin each preschool day in nature and spend 70-80% of time outside in nature.
5. Provide collaboration and leadership support with classroom teaching staff to develop and write innovative curriculum and projects based on children’s interests, inquiries investigations and experiences in nature and the Nature Preschool environments.
6. Utilize teaching tools of observation, documentation, provocation, discussion and planning daily for individual children’s goals and small group learning communities.
7. Develop learning provocations with classroom teaching staff based on implementing a creative, emergent, nature-based curriculum that meets children’s individual interests and needs as well as the classroom community of learners.
8. Assess children’s developmental learning and progress through observation, documentation, writing, letters, work samples, photographs, and videos through an individual portfolio collection.
9. Provide and track bi-yearly assessment and questionnaire tools for a group of children and support the classroom learning community to meet developmental needs, skills and foundations of learning measurements.
10. Effectively communicate, plan, and evaluate children’s progress with co-teachers and families about children’s development, skills, goals for building strengths, and developmental tracking through portfolio collection work and assessment tools.
11. Set professional goals each year and evaluate goals, professional growth, lead teaching responsibilities and performance with Nature Teacher 1 and administrators.
12. Participate in a minimum of 21 hours of profession development each year with onsite training and community workshops, seminars and conferences.
1. Commitment to the mission, vision, and core values of the ENC.
2. Create and maintain strong cooperative relationships and work cohesively with classroom team, other preschool staff, Nature Center staff, and volunteers.
3. Demonstrate flexibility with scheduling, curriculum planning and thinking.
4. Knowledge of California Department of Social Services-Community Care Licensing Division, Title 22 regulations.
5. Ability or willingness to handle a variety of animals including amphibians, mammals, arthropods, and reptiles.
6. Ability to gather, memorize and recall facts, figures, and information.
7. Ability to move up to fifty pounds and set up equipment.
8. Ability to hike on trails, and traverse stairs and uneven terrain while carrying equipment.
9. Ability to make independent decisions and respond to immediate needs of children, emergency situations, and program needs.
10. Ability to work outside in a variety of weather conditions and temperatures.
11. Regular, reliable and punctual attendance is essential because of quality continuity.
12. Ability to interact positively and successfully with supervisors, staff, teachers, families, and children.
13. Fingerprinting will be required.
14. Computer (Macintosh and Microsoft Office) experience required or willingness to learn.
15. Communicate effectively in the English language, in both oral and written forms.
About Environmental Nature Center
Founded in 1972, the Environmental Nature Center (ENC) is a world class facility that provides transformative experiences resulting in a deeper connection to nature. The ENC’s mission is to provide quality education through hands-on experience with nature. Our vision is to provide equitable access and inspire all to protect the natural world by serving as our community’s leader in ecological responsibility, sustainable practices and environmental education. The ENC connects over 50,000 community members to nature annually through school field trips, Traveling Naturalist programs, community programs, nature camps, service learning programs, and professional development programs.
The ENC’s 5-acre Newport Beach campus features 15 California native plant communities, wildlife habitat, walking trails, and sustainably designed construction. The ENC’s LEED Platinum certified facilities are nationally recognized and provide an essential connection between nature and the built environment.