There are multiple passive income ideas for teachers to boost monthly earnings. But, not all are right for each person. This article lists fifteen ways to earn extra cash as a teacher and breaks down how each is done with minimal effort.
For we know, life as a teacher is busy enough, right! The last thing you need is another full-time job taking up your relaxation time.
I worked as an English teacher for two and a half years in Cambodia and know the feeling of exhaustion after classes finish.
The good news is, there are many passive income streams you can set up to earn extra cash around the clock. While you have to put the effort in up-front, once a system is in place, you can continue to earn money with minimal extra effort.
The passive income streams listed below are going to take advantage of your unique skills and expertise as a teacher. They can be set up in a few hours a day or even in a school holiday.
There are many easy side hustles to make extra cash, but today let’s look at the best passive income streams for teachers.
Best Passive Income Ideas for Teachers
- Publish eBooks
- Start an Educational Blog
- Audiobook Narration
- Low Content Book Publishing
- YouTube Video Tutorials
- Sell on Teachers Pay Teachers (TpT)
- Online Course Creation
- Become a Resume Writer
- Write Book and Movie Reviews
- Affiliate Marketing
- Start an Ecommerce Website
- Sell Digital Downloads on Etsy
- Sell Simple Crafts
- Recruit Teachers for ESL Companies
- Rent Out a Spare Room
What Is Passive Income?
Passive income is money earned, even after the initial work is complete. Some call it ‘sleep money’ because earnings often hit the bank account while in the land of nod!
As a teacher, you earn ‘active income’ which is usually paid hourly. After you clock off, no other money is made. With passive income, you put work in up-front and only have to apply minimal effort to keep the money rolling in.
Of course, each passive income stream is different. Some require months of work up- front, while others only a few hours. But, if you have time to put the initial effort in, you’ll be paid back handsomely.
There’s no better feeling than having multiple passive income streams bringing you in cash around the clock.
15 Passive Income Ideas for Teachers (Earn $500/Week or More)
1. Publish eBooks
Writing and publishing eBooks is an excellent way to make passive income for teachers. They do require work up-front to create the content. But, once written, an eBook can potentially bring in passive income forever!
As a teacher, you could help your students or other teachers solve a problem. Ebooks don’t need to be thousands of pages long either. Even a few hundred pages is enough to answer a question or teach someone how to do something.
Check the Amazon best sellers to see what is popular. And have a think how you could say it better or guide from a different perspective.
Once created, eBooks can be sold on a blog, through other bloggers, on social media and on big publishing platforms such as Amazon KDP, Smashwords and Kobo Writing Life.
Further reading: How to Make Money From eBooks (Complete Beginner Guide)
2. Start an Educational Blog
Blogging is one of the best passive income ideas for teachers. Successful blogs do need a large amount of work up-front, but once the traffic builds, money can be made from advertising revenue, affiliate marketing and sponsored posts.
It only costs a few dollars a month to host a website initially. I use Siteground which is £2.99/Month for the StartUp Plan. They are extremely secure, easy to use and have great customer service which is helpful as a beginner blogger.
>> Learn more about Starting a Blog with Siteground Here.
3. Audiobook Narration
Do you prefer to talk rather than write? Then audiobook narration could be an ideal way for you to earn extra cash. With the rise in popularity of audiobooks, narrators are in demand.
All you need to get started is a clear voice, character and pitch control, the ability to bring characters to life and to be good at conveying emotion through your voice. Of course, these things can be learned and will develop with practice.
Pay rates depend on who you work for. Choose to receive one flat payment for the whole book, or to receive a 50/50 royalty split with the author of the book.
Further reading: Make Money Reading Audiobooks: Step by Step Guide.
4. Low Content Book Publishing
Low content and no content books include notebooks, journals, drawing pads, colouring books, planners and more. These are extremely easy to make in free graphic design tools such as Canva.
And once made, you can sell them over and over again on Amazon. The good part is, Amazon takes care of advertising, printing, delivery and customer support. Your work ends after creating and uploading the books to your KDP account.
As a teacher, you could create low content children’s books such as cursive writing books, scissor skills books and alphabet colouring workbooks. This is an easy way to build passive income and let your creative side come alive.
5. YouTube Video Tutorials
According to statistics, YouTube has over 2 billion monthly users and is the second most visited website in the world (only beaten by Google!). Over a billion hours of video are watched on the platform each day, meaning it’s a great place to start your own channel and make passive income.
Many Youtubers have become millionaires from their content. While this doesn’t happen for everyone, as a teacher, you could upload tutorials and monetise them through affiliate partnerships, ad revenue and brand sponsorships.
Work has to go into creating videos and building a following. But once you gain traction, popular videos can bring in revenue for years to come, because they never disappear like social posts do.
6. Sell on Teachers Pay Teachers (TpT)
Teachers Pay Teachers (TpT) is a legit platform allowing teachers to buy and sell instructional resources such as worksheets, lesson plans, projects, literacy centre ideas, printables and more. It’s like an Etsy for educators and one of the best passive income ideas for teachers today.
When starting out on the platform, you can sign up for a free Basic Seller account. This means the platform will take a higher percentage of your sales.
As you progress, you can upgrade to the Premium Seller account which is $59.99/Year. This allows you to keep a higher percentage of each sale, outweighing the cost of membership.
7. Online Course Creation
Creating digital courses is another way teachers can make passive income. Online education platforms such as Udemy, Coursera, Skillshare and many others have boomed in the last five years and will only continue to gain in popularity.
Whatever your skill is as a teacher, you can package this into digital lessons and sell online. The good news is, lessons can be filmed on your phone or with your laptop camera and edited with free software if you’re not ready to invest yet.
Some popular online course ideas for teachers include:
- Freelance writing
- Website design
- Proofreading and editing
- Social media marketing
- Teaching methods and best practices
- How to find work and make money as a teacher?
- Tutorials helping teachers pass exams
Further reading: How to Make Passive Income Selling Courses Online
8. Become a Resume Writer
Resumes show off the accomplishments, background and professional skills of an individual looking to get hired. Adults and students leaving education may struggle writing their own resumes in a way that shows them as the best candidate for a job.
As a teacher, you can make extra cash by helping people write resumes. Resume writers can earn $50 – $100 per resume and up to $300 for an executive level client.
While active work is needed to create each one, once you’ve created a large portfolio of resumes, you can re-use templates and just edit certain parts to fit each client. This means the work reduces the more you create.
9. Write Book and Movie Reviews
Do you love to read books and always have an opinion about the latest blockbuster movie? Then writing reviews could be an enjoyable way for you to earn passive income.
There are multiple sites that pay people to write movie reviews online. And you don’t need experience, just the willingness to put your opinions down into text.
Sites paying for movie reviews include:
Further reading: Get Paid to Write Movie Reviews: 9 Sites That Pay for Your Opinion
10. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is the process of recommending a product and receiving a commission when someone buys through your link. The majority of companies have affiliate programmes these days as it helps them sell more of what they offer.
As a teacher, you can make passive income affiliate marketing through blog content, a social media account, inside eBooks you create, through an email list, on YouTube videos or by word of mouth.
If you have an educational blog, it only makes sense to recommend products to your readers that benefit what they want to achieve. Many companies for example, pay for affiliates to recommend their TEFL or TESOL course.
- How to Start Affiliate Marketing with No Money?
- Affiliate Marketing on Twitter: Make Money Tweeting
- How to Start Pinterest Affiliate Marketing and Make Money
- Affiliate Marketing Without a Website: 5 Ways You Can Start Today
11. Start an E-commerce Website
Are you a teacher but also a Mom? Do you have an interest in fashion, travel, pets or anything else? You can set up your own e-commerce website and start selling products you love.
Large platforms such as Shopify have made it easy for anyone to start and make money from e-commerce. This article helps you decide what to sell, evaluate your idea, find products, research the competition and set up your new business.
You’ll need to spend time building and promoting your store. But, once you find winning products, these can sell over and over again giving you a comfortable passive income stream.
12. Sell Digital Downloads on Etsy
If you’re creative or arty, selling digital downloads online is a way to make passive income. Etsy is a massive platform where teachers, Moms, entrepreneurs and regular people can create an account and start selling.
Products that fly off the Etsy shelves are t-shirt designs, digital planners, budget organisers, crafts and much more. As a teacher, you could sell digital education bundles to help other teachers.
Every item listed on Etsy costs $0.02 and lasts four months. And each time an item sells, a 5% transaction fee is taken from the sale price. Take time building out your listings with keywords, so your items get found.
13. Sell Simple Crafts
Are you an arts and crafts teacher? Then selling simple homemade crafts online could be a lucrative side business for you. If your crafty business takes off, it could even bring in more money than your teacher salary!
Etsy is a great place to sell art and craft products online. Top Etsy alternatives include EBay, Handmade at Amazon, IndieMade, ArtFire and Bonanza. And a way to increase income is to sell on multiple platforms at one time.
Some ideas for simple crafts to sell online include:
- Bath bombs
- Handmade soap
- Art prints
Further reading: Need Extra Cash? Check These Easy Things to Make That Sell
14. Recruit Teachers for ESL Companies
Next on the list of passive income ideas for teachers is recruiting for ESL (English Second Language) companies. If you’ve taught online with a platform, you can earn money by referring new hires.
Many of the popular ESL companies online pay a referral bonus to those who find them new, great teachers. Bonuses differ depending on the company but generally sit around $50 – $100 per referral. Payment is usually made once the new teacher is hired and working.
15. Rent Out a Spare Room
A tried and tested way to make passive income is renting out a spare room. If you live close to a university or city centre, this is prime real estate that people will pay to stay in.
The great thing about renting out a spare room is that you’re in control. Rent it just at weekends, for a holiday season or for certain months of the year – it’s up to you. If managed well, spare room rental can pay for a huge amount of expenses.
Final Thoughts on Passive Income for Teachers
As you can see, there are many simple passive income ideas for teachers you can try out today. Whether you work as a full-time teacher or as an online ESL teacher, diversifying your income streams is a way to feel more secure financially.
None of the above are meant to be ‘get rich quick’ schemes. They need nurturing, in the beginning, to get to the passive stage. But, if you stick with your chosen side hustle, it can change your finances forever.
*Disclosure: I only recommend products I would use myself and all opinions expressed here are our own. This post may contain affiliate links that at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission.