Please create an account and complete the online application below. You will be notified if your skills match the opportunity's needs. Volunteer placement is a selective process and not all applicants are accepted into the program.

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Facilitate Fun Engineering & Design Labs!

Holt Scholars Program - Field Trip Facilitators

Volunteer Position Title:

School Programs Volunteer


National Air and Space Museum Mall Building

Reports To:

Holt Scholars Program Specialist

Position Overview:

School Programs Volunteers will engage the Museum's K-8 audiences in facilitated, hands-on 30-45 minute engineering and design experiences ranging in content from space exploration, rocketry, the human body in space, geology, and aerodynamics. Volunteers will co-teach this new type of programming that will correspond with the Museum's unique resources, objects, and expertise to spark interest and empower students to build new skills and connect with Museum content.

Key Responsibilities as an NASM Volunteer: (specific duties)

Sign up for shifts in advance in Vsys

On volunteer days, check in and out with staff and other volunteers onsite to receive up-to- date information on attending groups

Provide a high quality and stimulating Museum experience for students that is fun, memorable, engaging, and informative

Maintain up to date records of shifts in Vsys

Follow all NASM and SI guidelines

Do not use cell phones while on the floor of the Museum

Keep an open line of communication with staff supervisor

Commit to 8 hours (or 2 shifts) per month on a regular weekday (e.g. commit to sign up for two Monday shifts per month)

Key Responsibilities as a School Programs Volunteer: (specific duties)

  1. Assist in set up and break down of on site programming
  2. Learn content for Engineering & Design Challenges and co-teach programming to K-8th grade audiences. Each program will have two facilitators, one to manage program logistics and support students, the other to deliver an introduction to the content. Facilitator responsibilities are: The Logistics Facilitator will brief teachers/ chaperones in supporting classroom management efforts, ensure students are adhering to the program timeline, and engage with students during the hands-on discovery portion of the program. This person will also be responsible for answering teacher questions, providing itineraries for Holt groups, and ensuring that programs finish on time. The Delivery Facilitator will provide the program's briefing & wrap up to the students, as well as support students during the hands-on discovery portion of the program.
  3. Use inquiry-based learning strategies to facilitate conversations with school groups
  4. Differentiate engagement strategies to meet the interests and needs of diverse students
  5. Enforce the procedures for proper collections handling when appropriate
  6. Encourage school audiences to interact with the technology, collections, and activities

  7. Support Explainer staff and other volunteers

NASM Volunteer Training:

In order to volunteer at the Museum, volunteers must:

Attend the Orientation & Vsys Orientations during volunteer training and sign a Vsys agreement

Complete 5 trainings online (Protection of Minors, ISAT, COVID-19 Safety Awareness Training, COVID-19 Customer Service Training, Prevention of Workplace Harassment)

Sign a Program Volunteer Agreement

School Programs Volunteer Training:

Volunteers will participate in a two day (10am-3pm) training. This training is mandatory for all volunteers and will take place during weekday mornings in January. By the end of the training volunteers will:

Feel confident and comfortable in the new NASM classroom spaces

Better understand air & space content related to school programming

Have a better understanding of inquiry and collections-based interactions

Understand visitors' perspectives, with particular attention to K-8 audiences

Understand how the engineering and design process works

Know exhibit connections to program content

Gain a general understanding of best practices in informal education

Understand best practices in delivering Engineering & Design Challenges

Learn best practices for co-teaching

Qualifications: (what we are looking for in a volunteer candidate)

Required at NASM:

18 years or older

Excellent oral communication and interpersonal skills

Open and eager to learning new things

Interest in inspiring others to learn

Vaccination records

Desired for School Programs Volunteers:

Enjoy interacting with a diverse audience, with a focus on K-12 audiences

Willingness to support and build a collaborative environment amongst facilitators and with students

Friendly and responsible

Flexible and able to adjust to last minute changes

Time Commitment for School Programs Volunteers:

Volunteers commit to a minimum 8 hours per month for 1 year. Volunteers sign up for their 2 four-hour shifts in advance, preferably on one consistent day month to month (e.g. a volunteer will sign up for two Monday shifts during one month). Volunteers should be able to act in either role described above in the Key Responsibilities section. Shifts are available 2 days a week during the school year from 9:45 a.m.- 1:45 p.m. If canceling your shift, please make sure to do so in advance. If canceling within 24 hours of your volunteer shift, please make sure to call or text staff. Volunteers are not responsible for committing to summer hours, or making up for hours if programming is especially light.

Support Provided by NASM Staff:

Ongoing trainings will provide support for incoming volunteers and existing volunteers

Weekly NASM Volunteer Email Newsletter, The Friday Flyby, with updates, news, and current events

Volunteer Database help

Day-to-day logistics of volunteering

5-day-a-week attention onsite, at 202-633-3231, and

Support for NASM Content:

Program staff will train and mentor volunteers to effectively engage students with objects, technology, and content. After participating in volunteer training, new volunteers will shadow several programs and co-teach with staff.

Staff will be available onsite on days of programming and via email for volunteer support.

Information Sheets and background information will be shared during Training and available in a shared Engineering and Design Challenge Google Drive. Hard copies will be provided on site on request.

Bi-weekly program update emails.

Code of Conduct:

Maintain professional manner while volunteering and be respectful of staff, volunteers, students, teachers, chaperones, and other visitors

Communicate in a timely manner with staff if issues arise that limit your ability to come in and volunteer

Perform all tasks in full compliance with Institutional, Museum, and Departmental policies and procedures

Check in and out with staff at the beginning and end of shifts

Attire is casual, but must adhere to the Education Department dress code, to be shared during training

Use the Museum's education collections only in the ways directed by staff

Do not use cellphones on the Museum floor

Personal Information
Emergency Contact

If under 18, give parent/guardian contact information here

Additional Information
Parental Consent If you are under 18 please provide:

The Smithsonian may contact the references listed below.

Reference #1

Reference #2

Volunteer Privacy Notice and Agreement
I have read and understand the Smithsonian's Volunteer Privacy Notice and I certify that the information contained in this application is correct to the best of my knowledge.