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The Morton Arboretum-Education Program Guide-Wed, 07/10/2019 - 1:28pm

Education Program Guide


The Morton Arboretum
4100 Illinois Route 53
Lisle , IL 60532

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Job Description 

Implement nature discovery programs for schools, scouts, and families by using the Arboretum’s natural resources. Help children discover the basic science concepts related to plant and animal life, interrelationships among species, and human influences on the environment, through engaging interpretive techniques and by following education program outlines.

Duties & Responsibilities 

• Present tours/programs, outreach, and other activities to Preschool – 12th grade students, scout groups, family audiences, and other informal youth groups by following program goals.
• Present concepts related to the Arboretum’s natural and horticultural areas, special exhibits and events, and plant collections by using engaging interpretive and inquiry based teaching techniques.
• Guide groups on a variety of Arboretum trails, being alert to weather conditions, students’ level of understanding, and physical capabilities.
• Understand and communicate the Arboretum’s mission, vision, strategic plan, programs, and structure in a positive, constructive, and effective manner.
• May serve as point of contact with teachers for assigned school programs.
• Participate in required training sessions, mentoring assignments, staff meetings, planning sessions, and guide meetings.
• Assist in the daily clean up and set up of programs as needed.
• Other duties as assigned.

Education and Experience 

Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree required. 1+ years’ experience teaching/interpreting to children in formal or informal programs required. Coursework and/or experience in areas such as ecology, botany, biology, environmental science, general science, child development, interpretation or teaching methods preferred. Excellent oral presentation skills and the ability to engage and project enthusiasm about learning and nature to youth audiences required. Experience with English Language Learners or special needs students a plus. Must present professional image to the public by following the Arboretum/Education Program Guide dress code. Must possess a valid driver’s license, which is subject to insurability and an annual Motor Vehicle Record (MVR) report. Must become certified and maintain certification in First Aid and CPR (classes provided). Proficiency with Google applications beneficial.

Success Factors: Possess significant cultural appreciation for the mission of the Arboretum and the work of a botanical museum. Public service attitude and genuine enthusiasm for working with students and the public. Maintain a flexible, constructive, courteous approach to teachers, parents, children, and other guides. Sense of responsibility in the area of safety, including appropriate radio use and basic safety measures. Willingness and ability to check email regularly for communication with supervisors and other staff. Stamina and ability to lead and deliver programs outdoors in various weather conditions.

Physical Demands and Work Environment: The physical demands and work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform these essential functions.
• Physical Demands: Requires some physical activity: limited lifting and carrying (up to 30 lbs.), ability to travel over one mile on paved, wood-chipped, and dirt paths over varied and uneven terrain.
• Work Environment: Work is performed primarily outdoors in various weather conditions throughout the four seasons.
• Equipment: General office equipment, microscopes, two-way radio, assorted science equipment, individual backpacks with necessary materials and equipment are provided for Guides to use during programs.
• Schedule: Position requires some evenings and weekends.

Availability Requirements*

Spring (April to mid-June) Fall (September to mid-November)
School Programs: 4 days a week School Programs: 4 days a week
Scout/Youth Group Programs: 4 days a month Scout/Youth Group Programs: 4 days a
(some evenings and weekends) month (some evenings and weekends)

Summer (mid-June thru August) Winter (mid-November thru March)
School Programs: 1 day a week School Programs: 2 days a week
Summer Science Camp: Optional Scout/Youth Group Programs: 1 day a month

* Availability requirements may change due to need. Availability is provided prior to the start of each season, but assignment to tours depends on audience demand. Amount of actual work is based on registration levels from season to season and year to year. Capacity for programs is often met, but is not a guarantee.

Application Instructions 

To apply, visit

The Morton Arboretum is an equal opportunity employer committed to achieving a diverse workforce. EOE/M/F/D/V/SO

Full Name 
Colleen Emrick