Holle is a retired English and creative writing teacher. She is a professional freelance writer and former dog trainer.
Jobs for Retired People
Thinking about jobs for retired teachers? I’m a retired educator, and I sometimes consider jobs for retired people. I had to retire early because of a physical condition, and I often miss being a part of the workforce. If I were able to work a seven or eight-hour day, I’d still be in the classroom. Some aspects of retirement are wonderful. I have plenty of time to spend with the grandkids, and I have time to follow my writing passion. Money can be tight sometimes, though, and retirement can be boring and lonely, too. Educators are used to being around people on a daily basis, including close contact with students and other teachers. Many teachers thrive on this interaction with kids or teens, and they enjoy being around other adults at work with whom they have much in common. If you’re retired and find that you need to earn some extra cash or that you miss the company of others, I have a few ideas about jobs for retired teachers that might interest you.
As a retired educator, the first work opportunities that might come to mind are teaching jobs. It’s what you know, and if you taught long enough to retire, you knew what you were doing and you most likely enjoyed your job. You wouldn’t have stuck with it for twenty-five or thirty years, otherwise. Because of these facts, you might want to stick with this type of work. If you loved teaching, you’ll really miss it, and you might want to return to the classroom—part-time or full-time.
Since you’re already a certified educator, you probably won’t have a problem finding part-time teaching jobs. Perhaps you’re interested in substitute teaching. Subbing is fairly difficult for beginners, but it’ll be much easier for you. You already know all about classroom management and how to control and motive a group of students. Substitute teaching will get you out of the house, and it will provide some extra spending money. As a relief teacher, you’ll also get to interact with former co-workers and be able to keep abreast of the latest trends in education.
Teacher jobs like subbing will probably be easy for you to get, too. Most administrators and most classroom teachers will jump at the chance to have an experienced teacher in charge of a classroom while the regular teacher is absent from school. You might want to sub just every once in a while, or you might prefer to do so on a regular basis. For example, you might want to fill in for a teacher who’s on maternity leave or who will be out for an extended period for other reasons.
If you want a regular job that requires eight hours a day, you might think about serving as a teacher’s assistant. The pay is usually low, but you won’t have all the stress and red tape that a regular teacher has to deal with. You’ll get to work with kids, and you’ll enjoy many teaching opportunities. It will also get you back into the school setting, with other professionals.
Summer Jobs for Teachers
You might already be familiar with summer jobs for teachers. Even when you were still working, you probably had summers off. Maybe you worked an “extra” job during those months. If so, you probably already have some good ideas. A lot of working teachers need a couple of months off in the summer in order to take a break from the rigors of teaching. As a result, many schools have a problem filling summer school positions, which might be good teaching opportunities for you. Have you ever taught summer school before? If not, allow me to explain how it was at my school.
Summer teaching jobs, in some ways, are more challenging than regular teaching positions. At our high school, only students who had failed a class are allowed to attend summer school. Obviously, the students aren’t usually very studious or very motivated—which is how they ended up spending their summer vacation in class. I taught summer school for years, and I noticed that I often had more discipline problems there than I did during the regular school year. Some of the problems were directly related to the attitude of the students. Some came in with a chip on their shoulder, angry that they had to be in school. This resentment might be aimed at you. Holding their interest and keeping them on task might be especially challenging.
With my summer teaching jobs, I tried my best to vary my lesson plans and assignments. I also tried to make learning more fun, including the use of hands-on activities. Most summer school classes last for several hours each, so the problems are compounded. You’ll need to be creative and innovative with your teaching strategies. Nevertheless, summer school is a good source of income for retired teachers, and the sessions don’t last long—usually just a few weeks.
Another source of summer jobs for teachers can often be found at vocational schools. I taught several classes at our local tech school during the summers, and I really enjoyed it. The pay was great, and so were the students. I taught writing skills and psychology for the nursing program, and the students I had were wonderful. They were all highly motivated and eager to learn and to be successful.
Private School Jobs
Private school jobs offer more teaching opportunities. I’ve had several co-worker pals who taught at private schools once they retired from their public school teaching positions. Some loved the experience, while others didn’t care for it. I was surprised to find that in my area, private schools pay less than public schools do. I’m sure this varies from state to state and from private school to private school. My friends have explained to me that private school jobs are different than public teaching positions in most public school systems. The biggest difference they noticed was that there was more parental support, and there were generally much fewer discipline problems. Of course, both of those are good things.
The complaints I’ve heard, in addition to the lower pay, involve the lack of diversity among the student body. One pal told me he felt as if he were teaching robots, or “Stepford kids.” Of course, this might not bother you at all. Another issue I’ve heard here in the South has to do with the curriculum used in the average private school. It’s usually ultra-conservative. You’ll need to weigh the good and the bad to discover whether or not teaching in a private school is a good fit for you. Before you sign a contract with a private school, you might want to try subbing or volunteering in the school first. That will give you a better idea as to whether or not you’d enjoy working there full time.
Online Teaching Jobs
I have friends with online teaching jobs. They love the flexibility such jobs involve. One of my best friends is an online high school literature and writing teacher in Florida. Online teaching jobs might be at the high school level, the community college level, or the university level. Each level has its own requirements. If you’re a retired high school teacher, you’ll probably qualify to be an online high school instructor.
One of the best things about distance learning is that you can often set your own hours. You won’t have to “get dressed for work,” either, because you can teach from home. In fact, you can even teach while traveling, as long as you have your computer. Obviously, with distance learning, you won’t have to deal with student discipline problems, either, because you won’t have a physical classroom to manage.
Online teaching jobs have their own set of disadvantages, too. You won’t have the personal face-to-face interaction with students that many teachers enjoy. In many cases, you’ll have to stick to a strict curriculum that provides few choices for instructors. Many educators enjoy the teamwork they do with their co-workers, too, and that isn’t usually part of online teaching.
To be successful with online teaching positions, you’ll need to be disciplined. Because you’ll have so much freedom with your time management, it will be easy to procrastinate. You’ll need to set aside a certain number of hours each day or each week for the job and stick to it. If you don’t, you could get further and further behind with your instruction.
Jobs for Retired Teachers: Other Opportunities
Jobs for retired teachers don’t have to be restricted to teaching positions. Even if you’ve never had any job experience outside the classroom setting, you have a lot of skills that numerous employers are looking for! Think about it. In order to be a successful teacher, you had to have good organizational skills, planning skills, time management skills, and people skills. You had to be able to communicate well with students, parents, administrators, other faculty and staff members, and the community. As a teacher in an English-speaking country, your command of the language should be excellent. Obviously, you can also stick to a schedule, you’re dependable, and you’re prompt. So . . . what other types of jobs for retired teachers might interest you?
If you were a language arts teacher, you might enjoy working in a library. Chances are that you’re well-read and have a vast knowledge of books and authors. Oftentimes, working as a library attendant is pretty low stress, and you’ll rarely have to bring work home with you. You’ll get to interact with the public, and you’ll probably have the chance to pass on your love of books and reading to kids. You might also consider working with a textbook company, as a salesperson or as a consultant. You know what types of information and layout educators find useful in textbooks, so your expertise will be valuable.
If you’re a good writer, you might want to do some writing. That’s what I turned to after I retired. As you can see, I write here on HubPages, but I also write for Helium, Constant Content, and other sites for writers. I have my own blogs and websites, too, and I often write for clients. All these supply me with extra money, but I now earn far more on HubPages than anywhere else.
Retired teachers know how to handle groups of kids, so you might want to explore such jobs. Good retired teacher jobs could include being an activities director for churches or for youth camps. Not everyone is good with kids, so you’ll probably have a decided advantage over potential applicants who lack such experience.
If you’re a retired history teacher, working in museums or at historic sites can provide enjoyable teacher jobs. You’ll get to be around the subject you love, and as a guide, you’ll also get to put your teaching skills to good use. You might even have the chance to find a job that focuses on your specific area of expertise within the field of history. For example, if you’re a Civil War enthusiast, you might be able to land a job at a Civil War museum or battlefield.
If you taught physical education, you might enjoy working with kids’ sports teams. This might be school teams or recreational teams that are sponsored by local clubs or businesses. Some such jobs are for pay, while others are performed on a volunteer basis. You might also have a choice of which ages you’d like to coach and which sports with which you’d prefer to be involved.
If you’re a retired music teacher, use your skills to offer private music lessons to the public or to become a music director for a local church. Former art teachers can offer lessons, too, along with working at art museums or galleries. In any of these cases, you might want to volunteer your services at no charge.
And speaking of volunteering, these can be wonderful jobs for retired teachers! Have you considered volunteer work? I volunteer occasionally, when I feel up to it, at a local animal shelter and at a couple of local nursing homes and assisted living facilities. I sometimes include my love of animals and do pet therapy with elderly patients in nursing homes. Volunteer work is unbelievably rewarding. It makes me feel happy all over to offer some help to others. If money isn’t your main concern with finding jobs, the field is pretty much wide open. Consider volunteering for a group that delivers meals to shut-ins, like Meals on Wheels. Use your people skills and become a hospital volunteer. Offer your services to a food bank or a soup kitchen. Use your teaching skills to help with adult literacy. If you prefer working one-on-one with kids, you could become a mentor or a tutor. Believe me—you’ll be in hot demand, and your choices of jobs for retired teachers will be many!
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
Questions & Answers
Question: I am a retired prekindergarten teacher. Do you have any new job suggestions?
Answer: You could think about opening your own preschool or learning center.
Dr Kumar on November 30, 2013:
I need a retired English teacher .
my son is 12+.
one to one tuition at home UB3 4RA
email : email@example.com
please call me
kikibruce from New York on February 06, 2013:
I am not a retired teacher. I am no longer a classroom teacher, though, because I love my discipline of teaching history, but with the new pressures being put on teachers and my lack of skill managing classrooms (I taught in the city, but classroom management is required everywhere), I just couldn't handle it. I also was most recently at a charter school that made teaching almost impossible due to the unreasonable workload I was given. Thank you for suggesting online teaching. I am going to look into it.
Garnetbird on September 30, 2012:
When I left fulltime teaching I opened an internet bookstore and it is still keeping me busy and happy today/NICE HUB!!
Gail Meyers from Johnson County, Kansas on September 28, 2012:
I am not a teacher, but these look like some great ideas. I have been friends with a couple of teachers over the years and I think sometimes we do not appreciate them enough. I am grateful for the great teachers who pour their time, energy and often money into teaching our children! Nice hub! Voted up.
tamron on September 28, 2012:
I don't know why I didn't want to be a teacher because I love to teach people the things I know especially kids.
I imagine retiring as a teacher is a sad day. All my teachers growing up seemed to love there jobs. Great post! Stumble ya
DREAM ON on September 28, 2012:
I can not believe there no comments yet.Maybe I need my eyes checked?A wonderful hub with so many opportunities.I have a great respect for any teacher that helps a child learn a skill that they will have for the rest of their life.Thanx to all you teachers who I liked and didn't like over the years.You have given me the help and support so I can develop my talents even farther.Have a great day.