Teachers should be prepared to work after retiring from teaching. Retirement comes eventually and due to many reasons ranging from age to injury or simply a desire to move into a new profession. For this reason, teachers should always keep an eye out on what they want to do once they believe it’s time to move on.
Knowledge and preparation can make the transition out of the teaching profession an easier process.
When retirement happens because of age or injury, it can limit the job opportunities they will have once they’ve left the teaching profession. However, all teachers may wonder what exactly they can do once they’ve finished their careers in education.
Fortunately, the skills that people pick up as teachers can be applied in a variety of ways. Once a teacher leaves the profession, they can take their existing skills and apply them in creative ways in a new field. Here are just some jobs that educators can find success in once they’ve retired from formal education.
One of the most natural transitions for teachers is the shift from teaching to tutoring. In this role, teachers get the chance to continue to pursue their passion for educating others but without the strain that comes with teaching.
There are some major differences between teaching and tutoring that makes tutoring a rewarding experience that cuts out the stress of being a teacher.
For one, teachers have to put together extensive lesson plans that hit both state and federal requirements. Tutors do not. Sometimes, tutors can simply teach using the materials provided by a student. In other situations, teachers may be asked to teach from materials that a tutoring agency they’re working for has provided.
In either case, teaching is made easier because the tutor doesn’t have to come up with original materials or diversify those materials so that they appeal to multiple teaching styles.
Speaking of having to teach multiple teaching styles, tutors also don’t have to worry about adjusting their teaching approach the same way teachers have to in the classroom. Teachers have to take into account the different learning styles of students and provide materials and instruct in ways that appeal to those different styles. This can be difficult as the number of students increases, particularly in schools where classes are routinely filled with too many students.
Tutors typically work one on one with students and can adjust their teaching style as needed without having to constantly switch styles and materials between different students.
Yet another way that tutoring is more relaxing than teaching is because of the lack of paperwork tutors have to deal with. Teachers constantly have to track progress for each student, write up discipline reports, and communicate with administrators. Tutors do not. The most paperwork many tutors have to deal with is logging their work hours.
Tutoring can be done in one of several different ways. The most traditional form of tutoring happens when teachers create ads and market their services individually. The downside of this approach is that it can be hard to attract clients. For this reason, teachers often look to organizations that market tutoring services and make connections with new contents. This saves on money for the tutor, who doesn’t have to worry about investing time and money into advertising their services.
Tutors who work with agencies may end up working on the road or at a central location. Some tutoring agencies ask for teachers to travel to the client’s home to tutor. In these cases, tutors often work with the materials that a student brings to the sessions.
Other agencies have a central location where students come to receive tutoring. In such cases ,students may bring their own materials, however it’s also common for teachers to have materials on site that they can use to teach students.
Which sort of tutoring is best for a retired teacher depends on what’s most convenient for them. Tutoring at a client’s home, especially when working with several clients in one day, means being on the road a lot.
Tutors can document their hours on the road and apply those as deductions on their taxes, which can help recoup some of the costs. However, it still requires that tutors be on the go a lot. This type of tutoring is best suited for retired teachers who are still relatively mobile and able to sustain being on the road a lot.
Tutoring at a center is a better option for teachers who lack that mobility and would rather stay in one spot, though these jobs are often more restrictive since the tutor will work under supervisors who document their performance.
One area where teachers have success is by acting as educational consultants. Retired teachers have not only the knowledge, but the extensive experience required to inform the education process. At retirement, teachers may still want to contribute to the growth of students even if they don’t want to continue being teachers. In this case, they can act as consultants to school districts.
Educational consultants advise school districts or work within those districts in a number of capacities. Some consultants may advise districts on how to best integrate technology, for instance. These former teachers may have extensive experience with different types of technology and be well read on the current state of teaching methods that integrate everything from computers to mobile tablets.
Teachers can advise districts about the latest emerging technology, how to implement blended learning, or how to improve student outcomes using various kinds of technology.
In other cases, consultants may be deployed as consulting teachers. Consulting teachers are hired to help improve the performance of teachers in the district who are failing to meet expectations.
A consulting teacher goes to the underperforming teacher, converses with them, observes their teaching methods, and documents ways they can improve. By acting as an outside observer, they can bring their experience to the table and help underperforming teachers better understand how to better at teaching to their students.
There’s even more ways that teachers can act as consultants, however. In some cases, consultants are brought on board with a district to help produce new teaching and learning resources that can be distributed throughout schools in that district. These consultants are expected to have some previous curriculum experience and be well read on the latest trends in creating effective curriculum. Consultants work within teams to create these resources, so they should also be ready to act as a team player.
In yet other cases, consultants may be brought onboard to help with classroom management. Much in the same way that consultants are brought in to advise about teaching interventions, they may also be brought in to advise teachers on how to better manage their classrooms. This can be particularly helpful for younger teachers who struggle to maintain control over their classrooms.
Consultants may be asked to speak to large gatherings of teachers, such as district wide professional development sessions or conferences. This can be an important part of establishing a consultant’s credentials. These large-scale sessions can add a certain prestige to a consultant’s resume and make it easier for them to find consulting jobs with other school districts. These large gatherings are also a good opportunity for consultants to network with teachers and administrators who can connect them to consulting jobs in the future.
It’s not unusual for teachers to become proficient writers during their careers. This might not be surprising for teachers who specialize in English and Literature, but teaching is a career that requires teachers to communicate effectively with students, teachers, and parents. Teachers need to be able to put together effective lesson plans and communicate instructions accurately with students.
Within their organization, teachers also need to be able to communicate with other teachers and administrators. This is critical to discussing students’ needs and effectively coordinating programs and efforts meant to better the school.
Teachers also need to be able to communicate effectively with their administrators, so writing is a skill they need to develop. Sometimes, teachers also have to write longer pieces that they’ll present for conferences and workshops meant to help the professional development of other teachers.
When teachers aren’t writing to their peers or supervisors, they’re also writing parents to inform them about the performance of their children. This can be a sensitive matter that requires teachers to be sensitive to parents’ needs while being direct enough to clearly communicate what’s going on in a student’s life.
As can be seen from these examples, teachers end up doing a lot of writing for different audiences. Because of this, they pick up a variety of writing skills that they might not even realize can be applied in the workforce. There are two ways this can be done: in a traditional job, or independently as an entrepreneur.
Certain traditional jobs require that employees have strong writing skills. If a teacher retires due to health concerns or just some of the limits that comes with aging, then finding a part time job that relies heavily on writing may make for an ideal role.
Technical writers, editors, and even administrative assistants rely on writing to get their jobs done. This is by no means an exhaustive list, and retired teachers have several options in traditional jobs to flex their writing skills.
However, there are also options to work from home for teachers with strong writing skills. There are many agencies that are constantly looking to contract with freelancers. Thanks to the connectivity of the internet, retired teachers can find employment from the comfort of their homes. By combining their existing research and writing skills, they can find employment writing for research agencies, editing businesses, or advertisement agencies.
These agencies run the gamut from being highly automated services that include little contact with real individuals to being nearly entirely online companies with a full-time staff that supports its writers through online software. It’s up to teachers to research these organizations and find reputable companies where they will be happy.
On the topic of entrepreneurs, one final way that teachers can apply their skills after retirement is in entrepreneurship.
Entrepreneurship is a broad term that encompasses many different things, so it’s hard to specifically state just how teachers can transition into the role of an entrepreneur. To be frank, what a teacher can do as an entrepreneur after retiring will depend largely on what their field is. Different fields will have different levels of demand.
Teachers with a background in areas like math may find that their skills translate to managing a business in general. They may be able to find organizations looking to contract with individuals that possess a strong mathematics background and find work that way. They may be brought in to analyze productivity data, review business data, or provide quantitative analysis. Retired math teachers should be prepared to bring a variety of skills to the consulting role.
On the other end of the spectrum, former history teachers may find it somewhat easy to get consulting work with a master’s or doctorate degree. These teachers possess the skills and experience to delve into primary documents and historical records. This can be important for a number of reasons.
Companies may need to find historic data about a piece of property, track down old legal records, or just document the history of their organization. Former history teachers with a strong research background are perfectly positioned to sell their skills on the marketplace.
These are just two examples of how former teachers can go into business for themselves once they’ve retired. However, retired teachers shouldn’t restrict themselves to just becoming entrepreneurs in the fields they once taught in. Instead, teachers enter the entrepreneurial field with a large body of skills that can prepare them to manage a business. They typically have the communication skills to work with clients, the organization skills to manage the many paperwork requirements that come with business ownership, and the reasoning skills to plot out how they intend to grow their business.
This isn’t to say that retired teachers are prepared to become entrepreneurs the moment they leave the teaching field. Instead, they have a number of skills that places them in a strong position to be successful. However, before heading off into the world of entrepreneurial business ownership, they should still research the field they’re entering.
It’s important to know the market they’re going in to, the level of demand there will be for their products or services, and the chance of success they’ll have in whatever area they establish their business in.
It may also help to research entrepreneurship, either by simply buying a few books or even attending conferences that discuss the issue. The best chance of success lies in being prepared for the challenges that they will face once they’ve established their business.
There are plenty of options for teachers once they leave the education profession. Retired teachers carry with them a number of important skills that they can apply in a number of ways. If they want to remain in education in some capacity, they can become tutors or act as consultants to schools and districts. They can also use their developed communication skills to become writers, working as everything from technical writers to content creators if they so choose. Or, retired teachers can take their accumulated skills and apply them as entrepreneurs, attempting to build their own businesses and find employment for themselves.
Regardless of what path they choose, retired teachers can find comfort in the knowledge that they bring some highly demanded skills to multiple roles and can likely find employment thanks to that knowledge and accumulated experience.