TomTod Ideas is a youth development nonprofit that listens to, honors, and advocates for middle schoolers. Yep. You read that right. Middle schoolers, and only middle schoolers. We create programming specifically for 9-13 year olds because we think their perspective is valuable and necessary for the community.
Since 2012, we’ve helped thousands of middle schoolers discover and love their community while finding ways to help it thrive. Using the latest research about early adolescent development, our programing allows students to explore idea creation through a community-focused, developmentally appropriate lens. Using a variety of mentor-based, experiential learning adventures, we connect the energy, imagination, and intuition of middle schoolers with the wisdom, resources, and experiences of adults, while equipping middle schoolers with vital skills which empower them to take action today and set them up for success tomorrow.
We are hiring a team member with 3+ years of experience working with early adolescents, who is passionate about empowering early adolescents, while shifting cultural conversations on youth ability, education, and the common good. Core duties include crafting, implementing, and evaluating a broad scope of our core programs alongside our Adventure Curator team.
Position Type: Full Time
Salary & Benefits: $40,000 – $45,000 salary depending on experience. Retirement match. Healthcare. Technology provided. Professional development opportunities. Mileage reimbursement. Generous PTO accrual and paid holidays.
Location: Headquartered in Canton, OH. Programming is delivered both in-person and remotely throughout Stark and Summit counties and beyond.
How to Apply: Submit a cover letter and resume to email@example.com
Application Deadline: Open until position is filled
For more information on us, see tomtodideas.org and/or view the following short videos:
● www.tomtodideas.org/channel5 (a recent News Channel 5 feature on our summer camps)
● www.tomtodideas.org/pk16 (our Executive Dreamer’s Pechakucha-style overview)
● www.tomtodideas.org/ACchat (our Adventure Curators talking about our audience & approach)
TomTod Ideas is an equal opportunity employer, and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status or any other characteristic protected by law.
TOMTOD STAFF DNA
Any TomTod staff member should be:
● a self-starter with high ability at self-discipline and self-direction.
● a team player who readily operates in a collaboration-oriented atmosphere that includes a high level of interaction with constituents from a variety of roles (volunteers, mentors, board members, funders, community members, educators, etc). Able to facilitate consistent yet personalized communication across these diverse groups.
● able to operate in an environment with a diverse set of challenges, balancing multiple tasks simultaneously while prioritizing intuitively.
● focused on building a team culture, with high values on excellence, experience, and empowerment.
● a creative thinker and innovation oriented; able to solve problems and think creatively about tackling obstacles in a variety of forms and from various angles.
● proactive and mature in dealing with conflict, personnel issues, and community engagement.
● able to efficiently organize, communicate and delegate tasks, while working alongside volunteers to see ideas through to completion.
● readily engage and inspire middle school students.
● show eagerness to continue learning.
● be adept at writing in a variety of formats.
● have the ability to dodge flying foam animals deftly (or not complain if unsuccessful).
● be able to navigate a variety of working environments such as our central office space, schools, community buildings, camp locations and the outdoors. Office hours are built around school partnerships but retain some flexibility, and some work may be done remotely.
● have reliable transportation.
● be occasionally available for night or weekend commitments.
● be capable of physically transporting needed materials for programming (lift and move up to 30 lbs).
ADVENTURE CURATOR SPECIALTIES
The Adventure Curator will:
● report to the Team Guide and work alongside the Adventure Curator (AC) Team in the planning, implementation and evaluation of core TomTod programming in consultation with the Executive Dreamer.
● co-explore / imagine / curate ideas alongside middle schoolers in a variety of settings
● curate a rich, varied, relevant set of curricula for classes, clubs, and camps that balances both helpful systematization and responsive, organic connectedness.
● clearly integrate the 10 C’s (see addendum) throughout programming and provide sufficient guidance for seasonal staff and volunteers to understand and assist in 10 C development.
● maintain thorough documentation and clear metrics for programmatic goals and outcomes alongside the AC Team and Operations Navigator and oversee consistent implementation.
● assist with camper recruiting and retention efforts to consistently fill camps, including cultivation of community partnerships and ongoing engagement with camper families.
● facilitate clear pathways from classes, clubs, and camps for students to pursue idea prototypes and implementations through our project-based mentoring approach (What If You Could), including serving as a team mentor/facilitator.
The Adventure Curator will:
● maintain an active presence in the community, seeking opportunities to connect TomTod to other like-minded individuals and organizations and develop collaborations as appropriate.
● be an active ambassador for TomTod’s core DNA to the community at large.
● oversee strategic community collaboratives as directed.
● be supportive of funding opportunities and facilitate appropriate funding connections.
The Adventure Curator will:
● facilitate student mentoring experiences.
● be excellent at engaging students in a variety of settings.
● design and implement creative, inspired curriculum for facilitated programming.
TOMTOD IDEAS CORE PROGRAMS
Classes & Clubs
We have a variety of classes and clubs, operating both during and after the school day, that partner with schools in empowering middle schoolers to explore their communities and how to design ideas. Through weekly sessions, TomTod staff and partnering educators lead students through design thinking sprints and plunges while complementing existing class curricula, with a focus on critical and creative thinking skills and social emotional competencies. Students participate in a variety of engaging activities, learn from guest speakers, research ideas, travel to off-site locations, and use the information and skills they acquire to formulate ideas that serve others. All programs are cooperatively designed and implemented with school partners to enhance 21st century skill sets, develop social emotional competencies, and to explore community connectedness.
Camp What If
Day camps and summer enrichment partnerships help middle school students explore possibilities and create impactful ideas for their communities. Using a design-thinking inspired approach, campers learn skills such as teamwork, creative problem solving, digital literacy, research techniques, interviewing practices, public speaking and civic awareness. Every camp ends with a celebration of the experiences and knowledge campers have attained with community members, friends, and families attending to hear idea pitches presented by campers. Camp experiences can be focused on the assets and challenges of particularly locales/city centers or more topically focused. All camps use collaborative spaces from partnering organizations (such as park systems, universities, art galleries, and business owners).
What If You Could (WIYC)
A project-based mentorship experience, WIYC helps middle schooler teams launch meaningful, community-oriented, personally-crafted ideas. WIYC walks middle schoolers through idea development using an iterative design thinking process, with middle schoolers conducting research, setting goals, prototyping and proving their concept, and then setting it in motion to make a difference. Teams work alongside skilled mentors who bring insight and resources to join up with each student’s creative drive and passion. Not every project results in a “successful” launch of a team’s full idea, but even obstacles are viewed as learning opportunities. Often originating out of our various camps, classes, & clubs, WIYC projects have helped shape communities locally and globally and continue to have a deep impact on students, mentors, and the community at large.
TomTod’s 10 C’s 6 informed by Positive Youth Development Research 4 informed by 21st Century Learning (http://bit.ly/PYouthD): (http://bit.ly/21stCResearch): Connection
Creative Innovation Competence
Critical Thinking Caring