Substitute Teacher Resume Examples

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Professional Resume Samples for a Substitute Teacher

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Substitute Teacher Resume Tips and Ideas

Teaching is a highly rewarding career and there’s never been a greater need for great classroom instructors to mold young minds across the country. To make sure not even a day of education is missed, schools require expert substitute teachers to step in where they are needed and take over management of a class when the normal teacher is unavailable.

The teaching field as a whole is one that looks well upon professional, motivating, knowledgable and trustworthy candidates. Therefore creating a excellent substitute teacher resume is key to getting noticed by recruiters and being called in for interviews.

In the following guide, you’ll learn just what information to use on your resume that will convey your teaching prowess and inspire a potential employer, as well as how to lay out and plan your document. If you’re looking to save some time our resume builder can help you pick out the best designs for your level of experience and place all the information on the page perfectly and professionally.

Top Tips

  • Most recommended: Reverse chronological
  • Optional: Combination or functional
  • Use a clean and well-structured layout
  • Space out headers and subheaders with plenty of white space
  • Write in a legible 12 point font
  • Break up text-heavy sections with bullet points





Resume Length

1 x letter page (8.5” x 11”)


Most recruiters are going to be focused on your work experience when they read your resume for the first time. Therefore, it’s best to select a resume format that promotes your hands-on ability above all else. For this reason, the most recommended format for a substitute teacher resume is a reverse chronological format.

However, this isn’t the only option available. If you’re changing careers or starting out in the world of teaching you won’t have as much experience to show. Instead, you could use a functional format or combination format. These both place more emphasis on your skills than a chronological resume, although they may lack the same impact when they are read by a recruiter.


Your resume should look good, but it should focus most on being an easy-to-read document. Don’t worry about graphics or fancy fonts, these won’t have much effect on the recruiter reading your resume and will reduce the effect of the useful information you do include.

Create an easy to skim-read layout by using a clear readable size 12 font with a typeface like Arial or Times New Roman and a design with easily identifiable sections. You can be a little more creative with the headers and subheaders, but these should still appear professional and readable. Also, ensure you use enough white space between each section, as this will help the reader pick out your top achievements and abilities. Finally, use bullet point lists to your advantage. These can break up information heavy sections and make your best accolades really stand out.


If you are applying for a substitute teacher role in the United States, you won’t need to include a photo. This isn’t recommended for candidates as using a profile photo can sometimes make employers wary of showing bias and contravening employment discrimination laws.

Sections of a Resume


To get the job as a substitute teacher you’ll need to get a few absolutely essential pieces of information on your resume. This can be conveyed in the following sections:

  • Contact information
  • Resume summary statement
  • Work experience
  • Skills
  • Education/licensure

In addition to these sections above, you can also make your resume really stand out if you have extra achievements or skills. Also, as a teaching role is highly dependant on your people skills, it’s can be a good idea to give the recruiter some idea of your personality too. All this information can be explained in one or more of the following optional sections:

  • Volunteering
  • Awards
  • Languages
  • Projects
  • Hobbies and interests

Resume Length

The resumes that really shine in the hiring process are usually just a single letter page in length. Longer resumes don’t normally get selected by time-pressed hiring managers. However, you can extend to a second page if you have lots of practical experience or achievements that won’t fit just one page.

Substitute Teacher Resume Section Headings

Recruiters will normally spend just 6-10 seconds reading through a resume, so you have to make an impact quickly. This can be done quite easily with the use of a good resume summary statement.

This 2-3 sentence introduction to your resume can quickly grab the attention of the HR person reading your bio. It can give them the perfect feel for you as a candidate by highlighting your top achievements, skills and any characteristics that might give you an edge in the job selection process. Always try and tailor your summary statement based on the position you’re applying for and use the job advert as a reference.

Work experience

You’re almost certainly not going to be hired without experience as a teacher. Therefore it’s critical that you make sure you include some practical teaching work experience on the page. This could have been gained from a trainee position, volunteer work or from a college placement but it needs to come across clearly in the work experience section that you’ve taught before.

Your work experience section should clearly set out how recent your experience was (the more recent the better, of course). Set your previous positions out in reverse chronological order and detail the name of the position, the name of the institution you worked in, the dates of employment and briefly describe the duties you undertook. When listing your responsibilities try to include a good amount of numerical evidence where possible and show as specifically as possible that you helped students work towards reaching targets specified in the curriculum.


Teaching is a profession that requires a lot of skill. Your abilities are going to sell you just as much as your experience in the field. Being such a hands-on, people facing role your substitute teacher resume should accurately show that you’re capable of the versatility required.

Many of the hard skills that you should get on your resume will show that you’ve been trained effectively in the abilities required for the job at hand, these include:

  • Class management
  • Childcare
  • Mentoring
  • Student safety
  • Special education
  • Grading
  • Behavior management
  • Anti-bullying techniques

However, as teaching is a people profession first and foremost, you need to also show your skill in connecting with and organizing young people. This can be conveyed with the following soft skills:

  • Empathy
  • Organization
  • Patience
  • Passion
  • Adaptability
  • Creative thinking


No one is going to hire an unqualified or unlicensed teacher. That’s just a fact. The education section is therefore highly important on your resume. It’s also your opportunity to get across how well you know the teaching profession. To get selected by a recruiter, there are a few things you will need to prove.

First of all, you should have a degree in a relevant subject such as English, Maths or Primary Education. It’s a good idea to mention if any of the modules on your courses focused on classroom management or teaching. If you’re applying for positions to work with special educational needs, you will almost certainly need some evidence of training in this too.

However, a degree alone won’t necessarily cut it when it comes to getting interviews. You will also need to have a state license to be a substitute teacher. Additionally, you may also need a criminal record background check. Be sure to check if this is a requirement on the job description and be ready to provide proof of one if necessary.

Substitute Teacher Resume Vocabulary & Writing Tips

When you write your substitute teacher resume you’ll need to get plenty of industry relevant vocabulary onto the page. This is not only great for showing your familarity with the teaching industry in general, it will also help you get past any applicant tracking software (ATS) filters.

Most companies today use ATS to check through the scores of resumes received by HR recruiters each day for substitute teacher roles. Not using enough terms that fit the position could see your resume filtered out of the process.

Finally, don’t forget to fully proof and check your finished document before you click apply for the job. Spelling mistakes and grammar errors can still have a huge impact on your chances, even if you’ve got the best resume out there.

Words to Use

  • Knowledge
  • Child development
  • School curriculum
  • Class planning
  • Safety
  • Numeracy
  • Classroom activities
  • English as a second language
  • Early childhood education
  • Discipline
  • Teaching schedule
  • Literacy
  • Extracurricular activity
  • Professional code
  • Professional development
  • Grading

Action Verbs

  • Read
  • Teach
  • Manage
  • Introduce
  • Instruct
  • Explain
  • Lead
  • Cooperate
  • Plan
  • Report
  • Inspire
  • Organize
  • Test
  • Help
  • Shape
  • Mentor

Resume Samples

1. Candidate seeking substitute teacher role:

Passionate and personable substitute teacher with over 3 years of experience in the teaching filed and fluent ability in Spanish.

  • Led classes of students aged 7-12
  • Worked with other teachers, classroom helpers and parents to promote good behavior
  • Planned engaging and effective classes and classroom activities
  • Provided tutorial sessions for students who were falling behind with the rest of the class
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  • 3 years
  • State
  • BA
  • Fluent

2. Candidate seeking entry level substitute teacher role:

Experienced and skillful recent graduate in Primary Education seeking a substitute teacher role to expand my knowledge and help develop young minds.

  • Managed the distribution of classroom materials and literature
  • Created a safe and stimulating class environment for young learners
  • Taught confidence and technique in speaking English as a second language
  • Led classes of learners aged 5-11
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  • Volunteer
    teaching experience
  • State
  • BA
    Primary Education
  • Expert
    class management

Last modified on June 4th, 2020

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