Chicago Botanic Garden


Volunteer Opportunities - Education Programs

These programs attract volunteers who enjoy learning and sharing information. Most require specific training, homework, and practice during the first year to become proficient in program preparation and presentations to children, adults, and families.

Places volunteers may be needed:
Children's education and camps; adult continuing education; Fruit & Vegetable Garden programs; horticultural therapy programs; library services; off-site community programs; plant information office; Garden tours; general office support, mailings.


Time of Year






On-the-job orientation to the collection and computer catalog

1/2 day per week Monday – Saturday

Assist visitors; organize collections of books, videos, periodicals and catalogs

Plant Information


Master Gardener training January — March

1/2 day per week

Respond to telephone and walk-in inquiries

Tour Guides


Attend and participate in monthly training

1/2 day per week

Welcome and host scheduled adult walking tours

Children's Education

September – June

Docent training semimonthly on Mondays

Sign up to teach scheduled classes 1/2 day per week

Prepare and teach classes

Discovery Programs in Fruit & Vegetable Garden, English Walled Garden, and Japanese Garden

May – October

Late winter or spring training, seasonal updates

Wednesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., two days a month

Share information with visitors about these gardens through one-on-one conversations, discovery carts, mini tours, and activities for all ages.

Environmental Education

September – June

Monthly meetings on Friday mornings

Seasonal programs; date, time, and place vary

Grades 4, 5, 6, woodland, prairie, wetland, classroom, and field studies

Children's Garden

April – September

Volunteer orientation and program training

1/2 day per week Friday – Sunday

Programs for children and families

Enabling Garden

Horticultural Therapy

May – September

Orientation, program training, seasonal meetings

1/2 day per week

Provide program information to visitors; assist in Tool Shed

Garden Chef Series in the Fruit & Vegetable Garden

May – October

One-day training program in May

Two days per month, Saturdays or Sundays 12:30 – 4 p.m.

Hand out recipes; help chefs distribute tastings; help clean up kitchen

Off-Site Urban Agriculture Programs


Depends upon the program. Please inquire.

Depends upon the program. Please inquire.

Share information about the Garden; participate in activities at off-site locations