Who is chosen to become an Explainer?

There is no single type of person who is chosen to be an Explainer. The best Explainers are enthusiastic learners who enjoy nature, science, and sharing discoveries with others (especially children). Explainers learn to communicate with the public and gain confidence in a variety of circumstances. Explainers don't always start out as great public speakers, but they do begin with a willingness to work and try hard.

What if I am too late applying to the current session?

Application deadlines are strictly adhered to. If your application is submitted after the deadline, it will be considered for the next available session. If you would like to update your application, you may submit a new one at any time.

May I still volunteer after the first six months? Are there more opportunities for Explainers?

If Explainers have completed 125 volunteer hours at the six-month deadline:

  • They may leave the Program
  • They may continue with the Program by volunteering their same shift
  • They may apply to be an Advanced Explainer

What is an Advanced Explainer?

Advanced Explainers are offered opportunities to participate in special projects throughout the year. They explore plant science and ecology subjects through hands-on experiences at the Garden.

Are there paid positions for teens in the Adventure Garden?

There are a small number of part-time, paid leadership opportunities at the Adventure Garden for the positions of Master and Senior Explainer. When these positions become available, Advanced Explainers who have shown exceptional qualities as volunteers are considered.

What happens if I don't complete the 125 hours?

Explainers who do not complete the 125 hours before the six-month deadline may continue with the Program by volunteering, but they will be ineligible for any advanced projects or positions.

Do I need special skills or knowledge to be an Explainer?

Because all Explainers receive all the training and enrichment they will need for the Program, Explainers need only to be enthusiastic learners with an interest in being good educators and helping others to learn and grow! Having a general interest in nature, plant sciences, ecology, and education is very helpful.

What would I do during an average day as an Explainer? What would my responsibilities be?

No matter what the season, Explainers help young visitors to use science process skills to explore nature and make their own discoveries. Activity stations focus on concepts such as prediction, observation, measurement (sense of scale), data collection, or journaling. Explainers help children to practice these skills through fun, hands-on processes such as using a microscope or magnifying lenses, creating an observational drawing, collecting and observing samples from the pond wetland, or collecting data about life in the Garden. Explainers rotate through activities or may stay at one station throughout a shift. Explainers receive a 30-minute break during every 4.5-hour shift. They also have the option of volunteering for the whole day.