Back to school time is right around the corner (or for some of you is already here).
If you’re a parent, then you’re just getting into the hustle and bustle of getting everyone organized and on schedule.
But if you’re a teacher, you have the added task of preparing for the start to a successful school year.
This includes getting your classroom organized and purchasing school supplies.
A teacher’s salary in all actuality sucks big time. In my honest opinion, teachers are extremely underpaid and undervalued.
But of course, most of us aren’t in the teaching field for the money (if that were the case, there would be no teachers left).
Hard to believe, but many of us truly enjoy what we do and would probably do it for free.
However honorable, this isn’t at all realistic.
The bills are due and the debts are high. Even with a spouse, teaching doesn’t pay entirely enough to make all the ends meet. I should know – I taught for over 10 years!
So what can you do to make more money as a teacher, without having to leave the classroom?
If you’re a teacher who would like to make additional money, here are a few ideas on how to make money on the side as a teacher.
First Things First…
The teaching profession as a whole will not pay you to retire wealthy. Comfortable maybe, but not wealthy.
As a public servant, your income most often comes from the local budget. It is heavily regulated and most likely coming from the tax revenue from the area.
Which means – the more expensive areas will tend to have more money to pay their teachers (and will have better teachers, equipment, and materials).
Not fair, but that’s how things are.
I have always taught in the Washington, DC Metro area, which tends to pay their teachers pretty decently. However, as a single mother, I needed a little more money to survive on.
So, I opted to move to a higher-paying school district.
Making a move to another local district increased my salary by $10,000, which was scary at first but allowed me to live more comfortable as a single parent.
Hey, no one said that you had to struggle to eat in order to help others.
If you find yourself barely getting by on your income, consider moving to a higher paying school district.
Sometimes moving to another school district is not feasible. Maybe you just love your school or maybe the move will be too much of a burden on your family.
If so, don’t worry – there are plenty of other ways to bring in additional income as a teacher. Here are 9 ways to make money on the side as a teacher – without giving up your day job.
Tutor Online or In-Person
Tutoring is one of those side hustles that is a natural fit for teachers. They know what struggles students have in particular subjects and they know what the curriculum expects of them.
Working one-on-one with students is like icing on a cake for teachers, therefore making them great tutors.
In fact, credentialed teachers may be able to command higher fees than say a college student looking to make a few extra bucks.
Most tutoring occurs after school anyway, so meet students at a library or online if you don’t want to spend time traveling from home to home.
Teachers also have better access to potential clients, so start spreading the word to your parents and neighbors that you are offering tutoring services. Most of the time, you will find that word-of-mouth will fill up your schedule quite a bit.
Tutors can expect to earn $500 – $1000+ a month offering services after school. Depending on your geographic location and expertise, you may be able to command decent rates. As a reading tutor, I charged $75 an hour, so don’t be afraid to set your prices accordingly.
Don’t want to go it alone?
Sell Your Teacher-Created Products
As a teacher, you know that the curriculum and textbooks you have don’t cover everything. There will be times that your students don’t quite “get it” and you will have to make modifications to ensure comprehension and retention.
This may involve creating worksheets to provide additional math practice or a graphic organizer to help a student better understand what they’ve read.
No matter what it is, you have probably created something that would benefit a fellow teacher.
If so, consider selling your materials on a site such as Teachers-Pay-Teachers.
TpT has been a saving grace. It has not only helped students across the world become better learners, but it has helped to supplement the incomes of teachers as well.
Deanna Jump, is a Georgia kindergarten teacher who became a millionaire from selling on Teachers Pay Teachers. In fact, she continues to be the best seller on their site of all time.
One great thing about creating your materials and selling them is that once you’re done – you’re done. You can literally make thousands off of one lesson if it is helpful and fulfills a need.
Interested? Check out this resource on the 7 Steps to Making Your First $1000 on Teachers Pay Teachers.
Teach a Class
Have a skill that you can teach others to learn. If so, why not consider teaching a class after school or on the weekends?
Depending on your topic, you can teach anyone from children to adults.
Love to bake? Why not partner up with your parks and recreation department to teach a cooking class to children?
Enjoy fitness? How about leading an exercise or boot camp class for adults at a local park.
A self-proclaimed history buff perhaps? Why not become a tour guide at a museum or lead one through a historical part of town.
If you have a Master’s degree or above, you may also be able to find a teaching position at a local community college. Many schools now have online programs and are always looking for instructors to facilitate courses.
The options of teaching something you really enjoy and making money from it are endless and don’t always involve working with children all day (if you’re looking for a break).
Teach an Online Class
This is similar to the previous idea, however, you can make even more money creating online courses.
The Internet makes it possible to have a wealth of knowledge at the end of our fingertips. No matter the day, hour, or time zone, you can learn practically anything you want to.
Which means you can teach almost anything to anyone across the globe.
If you have the knowledge or skill someone else will benefit from, consider creating an online course.
Creating an online course may take some time and effort upfront, however, once you’ve created it you will be able to sell it over and over again.
This option is great if you don’t want to trade time for dollars and people are making a whole lotta money selling online courses.
I created a post on the best platforms to teach your online course.
Start a Blog
If you’re more of a behind-the-scenes person (believe me these types of teachers exist), you may be interested in starting your own blog.
Your degrees and experience in the education field have provided you with a wealth of knowledge to share with other teaching professionals. Besides from earning additional income, blogging can make you seem like an expert and open up the door to other opportunities.
For example, Leslie Samuel created the blog Interactive Biology, to help students better understand this
boring subject. His blog was so successful, it helped him to land a job as a university professor – even though he didn’t have a Ph.D.!
Bloggers make money from a variety of ways such as ads, sponsorships, selling digital products such as courses and ebooks, or through affiliate marketing to name a few.
Or maybe you’re not passionate about teaching enough to create a blog about it. No worries, you can still create a blog around your passions, no matter what they may be.
I enjoy talking about making and saving money, so I created this personal finance blog.
If you find a niche you love, but is also profitable – you can make some really good side income from it.
Blogging isn’t easy, but it can sure pay the bills if you have good content and a great marketing strategy. Check out this free webinar on the three steps on starting a blog.
Don’t know where to start, check out my step-by-step guide on how to start your very own blog.
Write an Ebook
Maybe you’re tired of being in front of the classroom (or computer screen) and want to do something a little more low-key?
That is perfectly fine and creating an ebook may be a better option for you.
Ebooks are great in the way that they are pretty inexpensive to create. The most you will probably spend up front is your time. Just like most digital products, once you’re done you’re done.
This means you can create a document, save it as a .pdf and sell it over and over again.
Your ebook will be successful if it can fulfill a need for someone.
One teacher, Laura Candler, created ebooks for teachers that she sells on her site. Teaching may be your first idea of what to write about, but it’s not necessary.
Every one of us has a knowledge or skill that someone else is dying to pay us for.
I’ve paid for ebooks that have taught me how to save more money, plan engaging lessons, and even how to make my own natural beauty products.
Take your knowledge, put in an ebook and sell it! You may not make as much as you would with an online class, but this is passive income that will keep bringing in money for you automatically.
Ever wondered who graded the essay section on standardized tests as the PRAXIS or GRE?
Yes, you guessed it.
People like you and me.
Real eyeballs read and score these essays and testing companies are always looking for scorers to help them.
This job may be seasonal depending on the test and how often it is given throughout the year and is not limited to essays. Some tests have math problems that need to be scored by an actual person.
So, don’t think this job is just for English teachers.
The busiest time is usually between January and June and expect to be treated as an independent contractor. Most opportunities are remote, so this makes it a great work-at-home option.
In addition, some tests require you to have specific qualifications such as a degree and teacher’s certification, so inquire about each one.
Help Seniors Get Into College
You would be amazed at the lengths parents will go to ensure that their child is accepted into a good college or university.
Take advantage of this and use your education and experience to help a student through this process.
As a teacher, you may have better insight as to what schools are looking for and help guide students in getting into college.
You may serve as an advisor to a student who is unsure of what classes to take. Or maybe you can help students to prepare for the SAT or ACT (I know tutors who charge $150/hour+ for test preparation).
Another option is to charge to proofread college essays, which is often a pain point for high schoolers. I mean, don’t you remember how yours was the most agonizing part of the college application?
To find clients, check with your career development office or partner with a high school guidance counselor who knows first-hand which families need your services.
Teachers make great curriculum writers, because um duh, they just do.
Only those who have been in the trenches can tell you which teaching strategies work best with students or how best to keep the attention of a second grader.
Many curriculum companies such as Pearson, are always on the lookout for writers. Even if they have a large staff of curriculum writers, there are always contractual opportunities out there available.
If you think that you have something to offer (which you do) and would love to help shape the curriculum your students come in contact with – consider becoming a curriculum writer.
And, don’t forget the homeschooling community. There are many families out there who are looking for help in creating a well-balanced curriculum for their children.
Just because you’re a teacher, doesn’t mean you have to live like a pauper. Hopefully, this list of ideas will help you earn additional income alongside doing something you enjoy.