New Canaan

Teacher Naturalist in Training (TNT)

Want to help strengthen your college résumé? Transform your summer experience from the ordinary into the extraordinary by becoming a Teacher-Naturalist in Training (TNT) at the New Canaan Nature Center. TNTs at the Nature Center comprise a volunteer force of teens who shadow and assist our experienced Camp Counselors with a variety of everyday camp activities while gaining invaluable life skills in a dynamic and energetic nature camp setting. TNTs help bridge the gap between campers and counselors and play an indispensable role by bringing their unique teen energy to camp. TNTs who excel in their position and enjoy the camp experience often go on to become Camp Counselors once they are 18! Do you have what it takes to be a TNT?


  • Age 15-17
  • Enjoy working with children age 3-10
  • Be highly motivated and able to handle responsibility
  • Possess a willingness to help Counselors with a variety of tasks
  • Must be prompt, energetic and enthusiastic
  • Be a role model for younger kids

What Do TNTs Do?

TNTs will assist Camp Counselors with everyday camp responsibilities such as:
  • Engaging campers in concept-related planned activities
  • Reinforcing camp expectations
  • Assist with snack time and lunch breaks
  • Help gather and prepare supplies for camp activities
  • Reading stories and singing songs
  • Participating/facilitating in all games and activities

Additional responsibilities will be given to TNTs based on your interests, ability to grab children's attention, and your readiness for it!


TNTs will commit to volunteering for a minimum of two consecutive weeks. TNTs are expected to be at camp each day Monday-Friday, unless assigned to the 3 year old group which doesn't meet on Wednesdays. TNTs may choose their weekly schedule preference. Options include working with campers ages 3-5 on a half day schedule (8:45 A.M.-1:30 P.M.) or working with campers ages 4 & up on a full day schedule (8:45 A.M. -3:45 P.M.). If assigned to work with the Apprentice Adventure (age 8-10) group, there is the option of staying later until 6:00 P.M. on Thursdays to assist with the camp out dinner that week. In the event a TNT must miss a day of camp, the Summer Camp Field Director must be notified of absence before the beginning of the day.


There is a one-time $85 materials fee for each TNT, regardless of the length of your commitment. This fee is due upon acceptance into the TNT program and helps to cover the cost of training, TNT program supplies and the TNT uniform (T-shirts and nametag).

Training Session:

Upon accepting a TNT position, all TNTs will participate in a quick 45 min orientation and training session before their start date. Please indicate on the application which sessions you will be attending.

TNT Timeline:

March 1 - May 15: Accepting TNT applications (Apply early as positions are limited.)
March 15 - May 20: Interviews for TNT applicants
May 20 - June 1: Acceptance notifications & required paperwork sent to accepted applicants

Two weeks before start date: All camp paperwork completed and returned.


Click here for complete TNT Program Description

Click here for complete TNT Program Application

That's fantastic news! To get started, simply fill out and return a TNT Application ( available here or at the Visitor Center). There are a limited number of TNT positions; please apply early. If chosen, you will be contacted by the Summer Camp Field Director to set up a short face to face interview. Please note, sending in an application does not guarantee you a position as a TNT. If you have any questions, please contact the Summer Camp Field Director.

Please return completed applications to:

Summer Camp Field Director
New Canaan Nature Center
144 Oenoke Ridge
New Canaan, CT   06840