I have tried all kinds of things to make money, especially in the summer. Enotes is a great way to supplement income. I also teach as an adjunct for an online high school and an online university. I also work in the before and after school program at my school and coach for some minimal extra pay. Teachers don't get paid in the summer, so we have to make it up some way!
Try and convince your school to start after school tutoring programs, staffed by certificated teachers. These usually pay well, you get to teach in a small group setting with students who are interested, and in the down times you get paid to grade papers and catch up on lesson planning. It's a win-win all around.
I do find that being a teacher does give me a number of different ways of earning extra income throughout the year in a number of different capacities outside of the "day job". I have worked as an exam marker, assignment moderator, tutor and of course as an enotes editor! I do find that I really enjoy my other jobs as they enrichen my experience of teaching as a whole.
I used the website Donors Choose to get a wonderful grant to purchase iPods for my classroom. I got eight iPod shuffles to use with recorded books, and they are such a godsend since I have a severely visually-impaired student this year. The grants are up to 500 dollars, I think. Just enough for a small upgrade to technology or beefing up a class set of books.
Besides enotes there is now Helium, Oratio, Docstoc, and Jungle. I prefer Enotes, though, because I love answering questions, and taking part in discussion posts, PLUS, Enotes keeps me interested in reading. I also do all the after school activities, but I found out that if I offer an enrichment after-school for the same class I teach (say, an enrichment reading club for my reading students) I get guaranteed attendance, my parents become more bonded with me, and the kids get a chance to spend a good hour after school getting better at what they do.
My husband (we're both teachers) used to make really good money working Saturday School in our last district. He would earn $130 each Saturday that he worked, and he usually worked one or two Saturdays a month. It was only a few hours in the morning, and each time he did it we could use that money to pay off one of our bills that month!
I think a lot of it depends on the district where you work, and what they will pay you for (and how much they will pay you). In my last district, for example, we had a lot of opportunities to earn extra money. We could do the aforementioned Saturday School, or tutor after school (we had built-in programs in many schools), or attend professional development sessions over the summer. Our hourly rate was around $28/hour, so it was worthwhile to go and do some of those things. In my current district, however, I just saw something where I can go to training this summer but only earn $50 for a full 8-hour day of training. Um, no thanks. I'd rather have the break than to earn so little (not that I snub my nose at $50, just that it's a lot less than what I would expect to earn for a full day's work).
Another thing is to do coaching or advising a group. Again, in my last district (can you tell I regret moving out of that district?), my husband was paid to coach Cross Country, and I was paid as the Yearbook adviser. Not EVERY advisory position paid extra, but a few did. It wasn't THAT much more work, but I got a nice bonus check at the end of the year for doing it. :)
Tutoring and teaching summer camp/homeschooled classes, etc can bring in some extra money. If you can get a good client base you can actually make quite a bit! Working as a nanny is also a possibility, you can charge more as a certified teacher who is able to tutor as well as nanny.
I have also worked part time as a writer and editor for educational publishing, writing reading comprehension passages and things like that. If you have an English background, you can freelance this type of work as a supplement to your income.
1. enotes.com, of course
2. Teaching summer school
3. Having students purchase books and giving them extra credit for giving your their copies once they are finished. I have gotten a number of classroom sets from that.
4. Working or proctoring for the ACT.
She didn't mention tutoring in her list. During the summer, I usually advertise at local coffee shops as a certified teacher who can help prepare study skills for the next year. I charge $40 and hour and do pretty well.
Thanks for sharing this article with us. I almost screamed at the suggestion to stop buying new books until I read on. I have bought used books from Amazon and have gotten some great deals.