Balancing parenting and work can be a challenge, especially if you have young children. With school days ending in the early afternoon, many working parents have to get additional after-school care if they want to work a full-time job. Like many parents out there, I would love to have the flexibility to work during school hours, and be able to be home when my kids are done with the school day.
While they may be harder to find, there are jobs out there that are either part-time, or work within the school schedule, giving you time with your kids and the ability to contribute to the family income. (See also: 6 Best Jobs for Working Moms and Dads)
1. School Jobs
It's obvious, but one of the best ways to work during school hours is to work at a school. You could get credentialed as a classroom teacher, but there are also many other support positions available at schools. These include: teacher's aides, bus drivers, cafeteria staff, administrative assistants, counselors, nurses, speech therapists and other instructional specialists, as well as substitute teachers.
Some of these positions require specialized education; others do not. In California, for instance, the requirements for being a substitute teacher are having a bachelor's degree and passing a reading/math/writing test. One huge benefit of working at a school is that you can be on break during the summer just as your kids are, reducing the need for additional childcare.
2. Freelance Writer/Editor/Proofreader
Freelance jobs give you the flexibility to set your own hours and work as much or as little as you'd like. However, they usually don't offer benefits, and may not always provide a steady income. They may also require a significant amount of unpaid legwork looking for gigs and drumming up business.
Freelance writing, editing, or proofreading jobs are perfect for working from home, and all you need is an Internet connection and a word processor. If you are gifted with words, blogging or copywriting might be a good fit. A few online courses could also prepare you for a part-time job as an editor or proofreader. (See also: 22 Websites That Will Pay You to Write for Them)
3. Freelance Artist or Designer
I know of several people who are working flexible jobs in creative fields. One is a freelance graphic artist who designs wedding and party invitations, as well as websites. Another does beautiful calligraphy and watercolor art for weddings and events, and has collaborated with various companies to put her designs on phone cases and other products. If you love being creative, consider turning your hobby into a career as a freelance artist.
4. Sell Stuff Online
It has become increasingly easy to sell things via e-commerce platforms like eBay, Etsy, Amazon Marketplace, and even social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook. Do you love thrifting? Consider selling some of your vintage finds or name brand clothing. Are you crafty or artistic? You could open a small business selling jewelry, handicrafts, cards, baby accessories, and more. I know one stay-at-home-mom who started a business selling a monthly beauty subscription box. If you want to sell on a larger scale, you could also try starting your own e-commerce store.
5. Fitness Instructor
Yoga and Pilates instructors, personal trainers, and other fitness instructors often have a great deal of flexibility to set their own hours, whether they work at a studio or on their own. If you're already a fitness buff, consider turning something you enjoy into a money-making venture.
If you enjoy teaching, there are many part-time opportunities to share your knowledge without being tied to a 9-to-5 workday. Many learning centers, language schools, private schools, community colleges, and music schools may hire teachers or tutors for just a few hours a day. True, some of these hours may be in the evening, but it may be easier to arrange for a partner, grandparent, or babysitter to watch the kids in the evening after traditional work hours.
7. Online Tutor
Tutoring or teaching online is now a great option for people looking to work from home. With your computer, a headset, and a high-speed Internet connection, you can teach people from all over the country (or the world) from the comfort of your couch.
8. Offer In-Home Daycare
If your children can get transportation to and from their schools, allowing you to stay at home, you might be able to operate an in-home daycare. This can be a great way to care for your own children while making some extra money. Be aware of the licensing requirements in your state, though. If you're caring for children from more than one family, you probably need to be licensed.
9. Test Scorer
Standardized testing is a big part of the education system these days, and all those tests need people to score them. For instance, Pearson Assessments hires college-educated people to score tests and essays from home, on a flexible schedule.
10. Freelance Bookkeeper or Tax Preparer
Help a small business owner by keeping track of their accounts and helping them with quarterly taxes. This kind of work is often very flexible and, aside from meetings with your clients, can be done anytime during the day. While an accounting background can be helpful, it's not necessary as long as you have a good head for numbers and can learn to use some of the many accounting software tools available.
11. Freelance Photographer
If you're gifted with a camera, doing family portraits, product photography, and even wedding and event photography can be a good part-time job. While you often have to work weekends for events, you can do the rest of the work — such as editing and retouching — on a flexible schedule.
Don't forget, there's also money in stock photography. Submit stock photos to sites like Shutterstock and iStockPhoto, and you'll be paid every time someone purchases your image. My husband submitted a few dozen photos and graphics several years ago, and we still earn passive income every month even though he no longer has the time to submit new photography.
12. Social Media Manager
The explosion of social media has opened up a whole new field of employment. Because you can manage social media accounts remotely, these jobs are often quite flexible. Many businesses hire social media managers to generate content and post to their Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook accounts, as well as interact with their audience online. If you are naturally good at social media and find it easy to gain followers, this might be just the job for you.
13. Party Planner
If you're known in your social circle as the parent who always throws the perfect party, you might be able to put those skills to use as a party planner. Yes, parties often take place on weekends, but you can do a lot of the prep work while your kids are at school.
If you are fluent in more than one language, doing online translation can pay quite well, depending on the company and content. The best thing is, doing online translation work is often very flexible, as long as you can meet your deadlines.
15. Online Customer Service Agent
Many companies now source their customer service agents from people working from home. Depending on the company, you might answer using your Internet connection and computer, or via your cellphone. Often these programs are flexible and you can work whenever you want. Check out sites like Working Solutions as a place to start.
16. Administrative Assistant
Often, offices require extra help for clerical work on a part-time basis. You may be able to find administrative work on a part-time basis for a few hours a day. Think outside traditional offices and broaden your options with churches and other religious organizations, small businesses, and self-employed entrepreneurs who might need a personal/administrative assistant.
17. Driver and Delivery Services
Companies like Uber, Lyft, Doordash, Postmates, Amazon Flex, and more have made it easy for people to hire drivers and couriers through an easy-to-navigate app. You'll need a car and a smartphone, but you can set your hours whenever it's convenient for you — though you'll make more at certain times than at others.
What other jobs can be done during school hours? Let us know in the comments!
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