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What Self-enrichment Teachers Do

Self-enrichment teachers instruct in a variety of subjects that students take for fun or self-improvement, such as music and foreign languages. These classes generally do not lead to a degree or certification, and students take them voluntarily to learn new skills or gain understanding of a subject.


Self-enrichment teachers generally provide instruction in formal education programs, such as adult education programs, or they teach classes or lessons on their own as a private instructor.

Self-enrichment teachers in formal education programs typically do the following:

In formal education programs, self-enrichment teachers instruct students in a variety of subjects. Some teach academic subjects, such as literature, foreign languages, and history. Others teach classes that provide students with useful life skills, such as cooking, personal finance, and time management.

Self-enrichment teachers also teach classes intended solely for recreation, such as photography, pottery, and painting. Some teach classes offered through religious institutions, such as marriage preparation for couples or religious education for children.

Most self-enrichment classes are relatively informal. Some classes, such as pottery or sewing, may be largely hands-on. The instructor may demonstrate techniques and then observe and correct students as they try to do the activity themselves. Other classes, such as financial planning or religious studies, may include lectures or rely more heavily on group discussions.

Self-enrichment classes may last 1 or 2 days or several weeks. These brief classes may be introductory and generally focus on one topic. For example, a cooking class might focus on making bread. Others, such as language classes, last longer and help students progress with increasing levels of difficulty. Some self-enrichment classes introduce children and youth to activities such as drama. They may be designed to last from 1 week to several months.

Private self-enrichment teachers typically do the following:

Private self-enrichment teachers often teach lessons in piano, guitar, singing, or other instruments. The instructor might work with the student for only 1 or 2 hours per week and then tell the student what to practice between lessons. Many instructors work with the same students each week for years.

All self-enrichment teachers must prepare lessons. The amount of time needed to prepare varies, depending on the subject and the length of the course.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition