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The best summer plans for substitute teachers

Estimated Reading Time: 4 minutes

School may not currently be in session, but summertime can still be fulfilling for substitute teachers. From summer school to well-deserved time off, there’s plenty of productive ways substitute teachers can spend their time.

Here are four ways substitute teachers can make the most of the summer.

Supplement your income

If you think you’re going to miss teaching during the break, there’s still plenty of valuable teaching opportunities throughout the summer. Camps, tutoring centers, and online education programs (like Swing!) are just a few of the organizations that hire substitute teachers for the summer months.

Many schools and districts need educators for summer sessions as well. Plus, organizations like Swing Education provide summer teaching opportunities.

If you’re looking to try something new, the flexibility of a gig economy job like substitute teaching means you can experiment with additional jobs over the summer, such as: freelance writing, graphic design, or ride sharing (or all of the above!). The ability to balance and try out multiple gigs allows you to diversify your income, accommodate personal commitments, and achieve work-life balance.

Professional development

All educators, including the most experienced teachers, can benefit from the right professional development exercises. As you look forward to the start of another school year, enhance your teaching skills or explore new interests that can benefit your professional life.

  • Online courses: Platforms like Coursera, Udemy, and Khan Academy offer a plethora of courses ranging from classroom management to advanced subject-specific courses.
  • Workshops and seminars: Many educational institutions and organizations offer summer workshops. These can be great for networking and learning new teaching strategies.
  • Certifications: Consider earning additional certifications in special education, ESL, or other areas to broaden your qualifications and increase your marketability

Relax and recharge

Substitute teaching is a rewarding profession, but by the end of the academic year, you might be ready for some well-deserved relaxation.

There are plenty of activities subs can enjoy during the summer months without breaking the bank like traveling (i.e. a staycation!), exploring the outdoors, and reconnecting with your creative side.

Renew your teaching certification

The summer is a good time to make sure you are up to date on your teaching certification. Each state has different requirements, but many certifications are valid for only a limited time period. For example, California’s 30-Day Emergency Substitute Teacher Permit is valid for only one year, while New Jersey’s Substitute Credential is valid for five years.

Similarly, you may need to complete a TB test/risk assessment or fingerprint on a semi-regular basis to ensure you can continue teaching.

Ultimately, whether your certification is close to expiring or if you just want to get ahead on planning, the summer presents a good opportunity to make sure you continue to have the qualifications you need.

Still need a certification? Check out our guide to getting certified in California and New Jersey.

Plan for the next school year

Take some time to prepare for the upcoming school year. Get ahead:

  • Lesson planning: Start brainstorming and organizing lesson plans for the next year. Gather resources and ideas that can make your teaching even more effective.
  • Classroom supplies: Take advantage of summer sales to stock up on classroom supplies.
  • Professional network: Connect with other teachers and educators to exchange ideas and support.

Summer is your time to relax, explore, and rejuvenate. Whether you’re traveling the world, learning something new, or simply enjoying some much-needed downtime, make the most of this season. Here’s to a fantastic summer, and an even better school year ahead!

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