How To Write a Substitute Teacher Resume

Crafting an impressive resume is an essential step toward securing rewarding opportunities in the education field. Your resume serves as a powerful instrument to showcase your skills in lesson planning and classroom management, experiences, and passion for teaching. Learn how to create a persuasive resume tailored to your career goals and the specific roles you’re applying for. We’ll give you real substitute teacher resume examples and show you how to align your resume with the demands of the education industry. Follow our expert tips and strategies to stand out from the competition and land the teaching jobs you desire.

  • Entry-Level
  • Mid-Career
  • Senior-Level
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1. Write a brief summary of your substitute teacher qualifications

Your goal is to captivate hiring managers with a brief two to three-sentence summary highlighting your top qualifications and skills. Thoroughly review the job description and mirror relevant keywords that demonstrate your suitability for the role.

Customizing your profile to the position in question showcases a dedication to the role and a willingness to learn more about the school. As a substitute teacher, focus on your adaptability, classroom management skills, and genuine passion for supporting student learning. Your resume profile serves as a brief but powerful introduction, leaving a lasting impression and enticing employers to continue reading through your resume.

Senior-Level Profile Example

Substitute teacher with strong experience providing math instruction in San Francisco high schools. Skilled at tailoring lesson plans to the needs of students with Special Educational Needs (SEN) and English as a second language. Draw on broad knowledge of the math curriculum to quickly generate lesson plans when called in on short notice. Master of Science in Education.

Entry-Level Profile Example

Dedicated substitute teacher with one year of experience delivering high-quality cover lessons for all elementary grades. Firm grasp of the elementary curriculum, with excellent math and English subject knowledge. Quickly build rapport with unfamiliar classes and help students succeed, including those with SEN. Master’s Degree in Education from California State University.

2. Add a compelling section featuring your substitute teacher experience

Use your professional experience section to emphasize your achievements and demonstrate your value to prospective employers. Think about your work and how you can quantify that experience. The goal is to give employers tangible evidence of your contributions in the classroom. You can instantly add depth and credibility to your achievements by incorporating specific metrics, such as the number of students taught or the frequency of successful lesson plans. Use action verbs that convey a dynamic and proactive approach to teaching. These verbs infuse energy into your bullet points, building engagement and keeping the attention of hiring managers.

Senior-Level Professional Experience Example

Substitute Teacher, San Francisco Unified School District, San Francisco, CA | September 2015 to present

  • Deliver high-quality math lessons to grades 9 to 12 at various high schools
  • Maintain a 94% average approval rate with permanent teachers
  • Adapt teaching strategies to each student’s requirements, including those with barriers to learning
  • Use existing schemes of work to plan last-minute sessions when cover plans aren’t available
  • Apply effective classroom management methods to ensure students behave and engage with each lesson
  • Set clear expectations for students and maintain and enforce all classroom rules

Entry-Level Professional Experience Example

Substitute Teacher, School Professionals, San Francisco, CA | September 2021 to present

  • Deliver engaging lessons across entire curriculum to grades K-5, with an average classroom count of 22
  • Use positive classroom management techniques to ensure good student behavior at all points
  • Plan and assign differentiated homework tasks to support learning outside class
  • Adapt provided lesson plans to students’ unique learning needs
  • Grade classwork and perform on-the-spot assessments to provide helpful feedback to regular class teachers
  • Maintain a tidy and organized class environment, and update displays on longer-term placements to reflect current learning and highlight student achievements

3. List your substitute teaching education and certifications

Prove your qualifications and commitment to professional development by highlighting the foundation of your teaching knowledge: your own academic background. Starting with your highest level of education, list the degree name, institution, location, and completion date.

Certifications in substitute teaching or specialized training programs validate your skills and dedication to your profession. These educational achievements are powerful indicators of your competence and ability to provide quality instruction. Similarly, format a separate certification section, providing the certificate title, issuing organization, and date received.



  • [Degree Name] 
  • [School Name], [City, State Abbreviation] [Dates Enrolled]


  • Master of Science (MS) — Education
  • California State University, East Bay, CA



  • [Certification Name], [Awarding Organization], [Completion Year]


  • Substitute License, Iowa Board of Educational Examiners, 2022

4. List your substitute teaching skills and proficiencies

Emphasize your expertise and capabilities in managing diverse classrooms by including relevant professional skills. When incorporating your key skills section, focus on qualities of particular importance to substitute teaching and those required for the job you’re interested in. By featuring these qualities, you convey your readiness to handle different classroom environments and provide valuable support to both students and educators. Check out this list of skills you could use on your substitute teacher resume:

Key Skills and Proficiencies
Adapt Communicate
Create Decrease
Develop Enhance
Improve Increase
Instruct Learn
Listen Manage
Mediate Organize
Plan Prepare
Record Reduce
Solve Teach

How To Pick the Best Substitute Teacher Resume Template

As you embark on your resume writing journey, you’ll need to lay a solid foundation for your professional information with an appropriate template. The best resume template for a substitute teacher has a clean and organized layout, allowing your accomplishments and key skills to shine. Simplicity and readability will help you make a strong impression on potential employers. Choose a template with clear sections to feature your professional experience, education, and relevant skills. Remember to customize the template to suit your personal style while ensuring it remains professional and easy to navigate.

Substitute Teacher Text-Only Resume Templates and Examples

  • Entry-Level
  • Mid-Career
  • Senior-Level

Jessica Green
(123) 456-7890 | [email protected] | Boston, MA 12345 | LinkedIn


Reliable and versatile Substitute Teacher with 8+ years of experience across K-12 and special education. Preferred substitute teacher at several Boston-area schools, based on strong class management and ability to take jobs on short notice. Bilingual: Fluent in English and Spanish.

Key Skills

  • Classroom Management
  • Parent-Teacher Communications
  • Special Education
  • Student Learning & Engagement
  • Student Records Management
  • Task Prioritization

Professional Experience

Substitute Teacher, Southern Boston Educational District, Boston, MA | September 2016 to Present

  • Fulfill short- and long-term teaching engagements at various schools and across grades K-12
  • Take regular temporary after-school positions coaching gymnastics and cheerleading
  • Received 92% positive feedback from all teachers
  • Earned two commendations from principals for going above and beyond standard job duties

Substitute Teacher, Orlando Educational District, Orlando, FL | September 2014 to July 2016

  • Stepped in to run after-school coaching for volleyball, gymnastics, and cheerleading
  • Selected for long-term substitute teaching positions at three schools
  • Appointed to 6-month engagement covering for a special education teacher


Bachelor of Arts (BA) — English (minor in Spanish), The University of Orlando, FL | 2014


Fluency in Spanish | Advanced proficiency in Italian

Frequently Asked Questions: Substitute Teacher Resume Examples and Advice

What are common action verbs for substitute teacher resumes?-

Constructing the professional experience section of a resume can often be challenging, especially when it comes to finding the right words to describe your work as a substitute teacher. If you find yourself struggling to articulate your responsibilities, we're here to help. To get you through this barrier, we compiled a comprehensive list of common action verbs to help you discuss your duties. These verbs will add dimension to your resume and help you effectively convey your contributions in the classroom. Consider using some of these words in your substitute teacher resume:

Action Verbs
Adapt Arrange
Communicate Create
Decrease Develop
Enhance Improve
Increase Instruct
Learn Listen
Manage Mediate
Organize Plan
Prepare Record
Reduce Teach
How do you align your resume with a job description?-

The job outlook for short-term substitute teachers is healthy, with a projected increase of 8% over the next decade. Educators can expect to see over 32,000 new jobs added to the workforce by 2031. If you have a specific substitute teacher job opening you plan to apply for, we recommend you tailor your resume accordingly. Customizing your resume increases the chance of catching the hiring manager's attention and standing out as a strong candidate. Study the job description of the position you want and extract keywords, language, and specific skills to incorporate them organically into your resume. This strategy shows your genuine interest and alignment with the role.

What is the best substitute teacher resume format?-

Generally speaking, the most appropriate resume format for substitute teachers is chronological. This format focuses on your work history in reverse chronological order, showcasing your most recent teaching experience and accomplishments. It's an ideal layout if you've had a consistent employment history and want to emphasize your teaching positions.

However, there may be instances where a functional or combination format could be more appropriate. The functional resume focuses on your skills and qualifications rather than specific job titles, making it beneficial if you need to feature transferable skills or you have limited teaching experience. And the combination format blends both chronological and functional elements, allowing you to highlight relevant skills while also showcasing your work history. Ultimately, choose the layout that best presents your qualifications and aligns with your experience.

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Expert Advice
Include a cover letter with your resume

Crafting a persuasive cover letter will increase your chances of securing an interview during your job search. Creating a compelling cover letter comes down to customizing your document for the school you're applying to. Learn how to build your own with our professional substitute teacher cover letter guide. For additional cover letter examples in related occupations, check out our guides for teachers and tutors.

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