Position Service Site: Kickapoo Valley Forest School and Kickapoo Valley Reserve (La Farge, WI)
Service Time: September 6, 2022 – July 21, 2023 (1,700 Hour AmeriCorps Term) (46 weeks) (40 hours per week)
Benefits: Living stipend total for whole term = $23,000 ($500 per week), Education Award = $6,495.00 upon successful completion of service.
Requirement: Covid-19 Vaccine
OVERVIEW: The Kickapoo Valley Forest School (KVFS) will strive to create a child-centered, safe, inclusive, and sensory-rich environment in which children will learn and grow through play and exploration in the beautiful natural environment of the Kickapoo Valley Reserve (KVR). Our education philosophy is rooted in belief that child development is at its best when the whole child is honored, and that ‘play’ in a rich environment is the true work of the child. We also recognize that children are individuals whose interests, capacities and gifts demand that our teaching style and environment be accessible from many different points and levels of ability. Additionally, as humans we thrive in environments full of love, inspiration, wonder, connection and beauty.
Kickapoo Valley Reserve offers hands-on environmental learning opportunities that promote positive environmental values to people of all ages. Our Visitor Center offers interactive museum exhibits as well as classroom space, but some of the most exciting learning happens on the trails and in the woods of our almost 8,600 acres of outdoor “classroom” space! We provide structured hands-on nature education year-round. Our programs include Saturday and evening public programs, school field trip experiences, summer credit courses for adult and high school students, and summer day camps for middle school students.
SERVICE DESCRIPTION: The KVFS place-based curriculum is based on the experiences that the students encounter throughout the seasons. Enthusiasm and willingness to explore and learn along with the students is a quality we seek in the Forest School Mentor. The Forest School Mentor will work alongside dedicated teachers to help provide a safe and welcoming learning environment for our youngest learners. The Kickapoo Valley Forest School Mentor will work with the school daily during the school year. During the summer months the Mentor will assist the Kickapoo Valley Reserve's education program with weekly camp programming and school group visits.
Kickapoo Valley Forest School
• Oversee, guide and engage with students as they explore the natural world both individually and in small groups
• Observe children as they play and engage in the natural world, listening to and learning about children through this play.
• Co-create and facilitate nature themed small group lessons, games and art projects
• Support place-based curriculum led by teachers
• Provide thoughtful, conscious supervision for students while outside in a variety of settings
• Help facilitate student work time where students choose from a variety of activities on an individual basis
• Facilitate and tend to children’s needs while hiking for long distances
• Help children maintain and put on outdoor clothing and gear
• Remain outdoors for extended periods of time, in all weather conditions, and traverse rugged terrain
• Show enthusiasm for being outside in all weather conditions and for the natural world
• Model appropriate outdoor clothing choices
• Participate in a high-energy and rigorous outdoor learning environment
• Model age appropriate play and language.
• Model wonder at and respect for the natural world, helping children to do the same.
• Attend family events outside of school hours
Kickapoo Valley Reserve
• Assist with week-long summer camps for students ages 2-17, acting as aid to primary camp instructor, prepping needed materials, snacks etc.
• Assist with instruction of day groups as needed
• Assist with Citizen Based Monitoring projects on the Reserve as time allows
• Create education displays
• Organize and inventory education materials.
Individual Placement AmeriCorps Members serve with WisCorps partner organizations focused on the areas of natural resource conservation and environmental education. Members promote community service and environmental awareness through direct training and service in the outdoors while participating in community engagement projects. Service Members serve at a single placement site, receive a biweekly stipend and AmeriCorps benefits that correlate to their term of service. Upon successful completion of their service hours, Individual Placements receive a Segal Education Award correlating to the number of service hours completed.
Childcare assistance if eligible, Education award upon successful completion of service, Health coverage, Living allowance, Student loan forbearance
Living stipend total for whole term = $23,000 ($500 per week), Education Award = $6,495.00 upon successful completion of service.
Desired Certifications or Qualifications
• Minimum age requirement is 18 years old
• Able to perform duties in inclement weather
• Enthusiastic, creative and flexible
• Outdoor recreation experience is a plus
• Teaching experience is a plus
• Covid Vaccine Required
Subject to criminal background check