Activity Specialist - Early Childhood (West Side YMCA)

The Activity Specialist will play a critical role in providing enrichment in the Y Early Childhood Department.
Job Description

Salary: $25.00 Hourly

The YMCA of Greater New York is here for all New Yorkers — to empower youth, improve health, and strengthen community. Founded in 1852, today the Y serves a diverse population of more than half a million New Yorkers who learn, grow, and thrive through programs and services at our 24 branches. Community is the cornerstone of the Y. Together, we connect active, engaged New Yorkers to build stronger communities.

To help fulfill our mission, we cultivate a culture of learning, leading, and collaboration to enhance community impact. Through our talented staff and “LEAP” career framework (Leadership, Empowerment, Accountability, Personal Growth), we are committed to a people-first approach that fosters trust, inclusion, growth, and development for all.

The West Side YMCA is seeking an Activity Specialist, who, under the supervision of the Assistant and Early Childhood Director, will play a critical role in providing enrichment in the Y Early Childhood Department. The Activity Specialist will be responsible for providing a safe and positive environment for preschool age children, to provide opportunities for learning, interaction, and academic/ personal growth. Specifically, the Activity Specialist will prepare and provide age-appropriate movement instruction for all children enrolled in our Early Childhood Program.


The YMCA of Greater New York offers a variety of benefits to its staff members including retirement benefits, medical, paid time off, free YMCA membership and more! Benefit eligibility is determined by an individual’s employment status (i.e., full-time or part-time), tenure and/or the number of hours scheduled to work. Click here for more information.

  • High School diploma or equivalent required; College credits and formal education in Education preferred.
  • At least two years of experience working with youth, specifically in the area of gross motor play.
  • Knowledge of MS Word, Excel and PowerPoint, Access, Adobe PageMaker, and Photoshop preferred.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and leadership qualities, and comfortable working with diverse youth and adults. 
Essential Functions
  • Ensure the health, safety, and well-being of participants in the program by providing appropriate supervision at all times.  
  • Plan and implement meaningful activities that are age-appropriate, exciting, and challenging while simultaneously promoting developmentally appropriate skills.
  • Teach participants structured games and gross motor skills, including activities that build their level of skill and confidence.
  • Coordinate and present a culminating performance at the end of the program cycle, if applicable.
  • Work cooperatively with professional staff, teachers, and administration.
  • Promote an inclusive, welcoming, and respectful environment that embraces the diversity of all participants.
  • Create and maintain a strength-based, youth-focused atmosphere that is consistent and sensitive to the needs of participants with learning, emotional, or behavioral differences.
  • Maintain accurate program documentation (attendance, sign-in/out forms, behavior reports, incident reports, and accident reports, as appropriate).
  • Serve as a positive role model for participants.
  • Work with the Early Childhood administration to secure and maintain all equipment or supplies needed for class.
  • Understand and communicate the YMCA’s core values and the goals of the Early Childhood Program to participants and caregivers.
  • Develop and maintain positive relationships with teachers and administration through regular communication about the children’s strengths and areas of growth.
  • Prepare the learning environment, lessons, and necessary supplies for all activities.
  • Actively participate in training sessions, designated meetings, and special events.
  • Adhere to all Department of Health, YMCA of Greater New York, and funder standards, expectations, and regulations.