Summer Jobs For Teachers (And How To Get Them)

By Chris Kolmar - Nov. 30, 2020

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When summer rolls around, and kids are out of school, it can also mean a break from work and paychecks for teachers. Summer can be a tough time for teachers since many don’t get paid while school isn’t in session.

Luckily, teachers are some of the most qualified and trustworthy people out there, so there are plenty of opportunities for you to find while school is out. Many summer jobs for teachers can overlap with regular teaching duties if you want to continue working in the same field or branch out to new opportunities. There are many different jobs people are willing to hire teachers for, so always keep an eye out.

We’re going to cover a few of the marketable skills that teachers have and the most popular summer jobs for teachers. If you don’t know where to start looking for seasonal opportunities, our guide will point you in the right direction.

Leveraging Your Teacher Skills

Being a teacher involves a lot of hard skills, like childcare or classroom management, as well as soft skills, like communication and organization. Knowing which skills you excel at is a great first step in landing a summer gig.

Many of the skills teachers have are highly transferable, and you can apply them to a wide range of jobs. If you’re looking to expand your horizons and diversify your work experience, knowing your skills and strengths is crucial. Think about how you’ve used these skills in your teaching job and try to leverage that for a summer opportunity.

Here are some of the most common skills required to be a teacher.

  • Patience. Most of all, teachers are great at being patient. Taking the time to help a student through an academic hurdle takes patience and dedication, so think about jobs requiring this skill, like childcare or acting as a companion in a nursing or retirement home.

  • Critical thinking. Not only do teachers need to be good critical thinkers, but they also need to share their wisdom and teach students to be critical thinkers. Find strong examples of times you thought critically for your job and apply them to any summer jobs you apply to.

  • Communication. Teachers are master communicators, and you can leverage this in all stages of the job search. Think about what kinds of communication you’re best at, whether verbal, written, or through body language. Good communicators are needed in every industry, so many educators can highlight this skill as they search for summer opportunities.

  • Scheduling. Teachers keep classrooms running on a tight schedule, so don’t be afraid to explore side jobs that require planning and coordination.

    Job type you want
    Full Time
    Part Time
  • Leadership. As the head of the classroom, teachers are natural leaders, and those leadership skills can transfer to typical desk jobs as well as fun summer gigs like camp counseling.

  • Conflict resolution. Sometimes students disagree among themselves, or teachers need to resolve an issue between them and a student. Conflict resolution skills are in high demand for many jobs, so think about how you can use your skills to help others during the summer months.

  • Technology skills. As technology becomes more and more essential to everyday life, teachers are responsible for bringing new tech into the classroom and teaching students how to use technology and the internet responsibly. These skills can be shared with the broader community through community classes or other similar events.

  • Creativity. Teachers have to be creative to keep their students engaged. This is an essential skill across all occupations, whether it’s keeping everyone listening in a boardroom or making sure students understand your lesson. Try to leverage your creative skills in whatever summer job you’re looking for.

  • Time management. Often teachers juggle teaching multiple subjects, offering extra help to students, creating lesson plans, and overseeing a club. Good time management skills are needed no matter what jobs you’re looking at, so make sure to highlight your ability to manage your time and multitask.

  • Teamwork. At the end of the day, teachers work with other teachers and staff to get their lessons taught, so coordination and teamwork are essential. Be sure to highlight that you’re a team player in your applications.

8 Best Side Gigs and Summer Jobs for Teachers

When you’re looking for a summer job, these are some of the most popular options for teachers. There are plenty more opportunities out there, but these tend to be the easiest gigs for teachers to land.

  • Test-prep teacher. Depending on what level you teach, teachers can easily make the transition to test-prep instructors. As students prepare for the college admissions process and take standardized tests, many need support to reach their full potential

    Test-prep instructors work one on one or with groups of students to teach them key skills and review their mistakes to boost their scores. SAT and ACT help are the most common options, but you could help with graduate test prep on the GRE, MCAT, or LSAT, depending on your expertise.

    There’s usually a lot of work available for test prep instructors in the summer since students aren’t in school and have more time to dedicate to prepping.

  • Summer school teacher. Often, students need a little extra help and attend summer classes to revise and prep for the year ahead or even to get ahead and master an advanced course. Many teachers can find work as a summer school teacher, and often it can be even better than normal teaching.

    Sometimes the courses are online, so you can work remotely, or the hours are shorter than the typical eight hour school day. You’ll also get to work with smaller groups of students and really get to know and support them.

  • Tutor. Tutoring is a great option for teachers regardless of the time of year. There’s always a handful of students who could benefit from individualized one on one lessons, and summer is a great time to help them out.

    Tutoring is a great option since you get to manage your schedule, decide how many students to take on, and pick the subjects you want to teach. Try approaching your students who are struggling in a subject or talking to your colleagues about tutoring opportunities to find work as a tutor.

  • Camp counselor. If you’re used to working with kids all day, being a camp counselor is a great way to meet new kids and work with them in a different environment from what you’re used to. Camps are always looking for people to help with the influx of kids, especially super qualified people like teachers.

    You’ll also get to do new activities and find camps that match a niche interest of yours. The only drawback with being a camp counselor is that sometimes they don’t pay as highly as a real teaching position, but you can always negotiate based on your rich experience.

  • Freelance writer. Being a freelance writer is a great way to stay active and make some money while keeping a flexible schedule. You can start writing generic articles or pick a niche that you know well, like whatever subject you teach or advice for teachers.

    As a teacher, you have great time management and communication skills, so being a freelance writer is a great opportunity. Since freelancers usually work remotely and on their own hours, you can even freelance write while you tutor or take on any of the other jobs on this list. Just make sure you identify the topics you want to work with and start pitching yourself on job boards, freelance forums, and other platforms.

  • Translator. If you’re a language tutor, looking for translation work is a great idea. It will keep you active and engaged with your target language while helping spread knowledge across languages. If you’re not fluent in another language, sometimes companies look for native speakers to edit and refine translations, so they sound more natural.

    Keep an eye out for translation jobs since they can pay pretty well. Bonus tip – if you’re a language teacher, tutoring in that language, or offering to tutor English as a second language (ESL) is a great way to put your language skills to use.

  • Babysitter. For some teachers, like preschool, kindergarten, or elementary instructors, the jump to babysitting or childcare is natural. You spend all day with small children, so working with one or a few and watching them is an easy job. With parents at work while students are on summer break, you can find plenty of families who need a babysitter, especially one they can trust.

    You can even combine duties and offer to teach the kids summer classes, tutor them, or teach a language if you can. If you offer to teach on top of babysitting, you could probably earn a little extra too.

  • Pet sitter. If you want to take a break from teaching or working with kids, being a pet sitter or a house sitter is a great option. With people going to work or going on vacation in the summer, there’s a lot of people who need someone to check in on their pets or their house. Usually, these jobs don’t require a lot of time, so you can take on a few people at a time and make some decent money from it.

Here are a few more options that you can look into:

  • Religious education teacher

  • Tour guide

  • Data entry clerk

  • Resume and cover letter editor

  • Freelance editor

  • Landlord

  • Community class instructor

  • Virtual assistant

  • Swim instructor

  • Elderly companion care

  • Library assistant

  • Blogger

  • Online course instructor

  • Lifeguard

  • Server

  • Uber/Lyft driver

  • Proofreader/editor

  • Transcriber

  • Participate in research studies

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Chris Kolmar


Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar is a co-founder of Zippia and the editor-in-chief of the Zippia career advice blog. He has hired over 50 people in his career, been hired five times, and wants to help you land your next job. His research has been featured on the New York Times, Thrillist, VOX, The Atlantic, and a host of local news. More recently, he's been quoted on USA Today, BusinessInsider, and CNBC.

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