What I Learned Teaching for VIPKIDS
It’s been 85 days with VIPKid and I have taught 100 classes! I wanted to share everything I wish I knew when I first started out!
I have no background teaching English. I will be honest with you. I started VIPKid because a friend of mine was doing it, she was also applying and the gyms got shut down again. It seemed like a sign from the universe. I spent 3 weeks getting a TEFL Cert from https://www.teflcourse.net/
I got the one for $199, the basic one and I learned ALOT from it. So I then applied to VIPKids I was so excited and i scheduled my Mock and I failed it.
I scheduled my Mock again, and I failed it.
Frustrated I scheduled it for the next day.
Failed again, more frustrated Scheduled it again. Got the email, thanks your so close try again.
I decided to give it one more shot and then I was going to give up.
I was sick of the class, I was sick of the woman conducting the Mock which almost seemed to be acting like really stupid and purposefully hard to deal with. Was that part of the test?
I sign on for what must have been my 8th Mock class, and it was the same woman who did my first Mock class, and her and I just totally butted heads, she CLEARLY did not like me. Thankfully she wasnt the oe deciding, the send the video to VIPKid and they decide there. and the next day I finally got an email saying Welcome.
So I signed into the App and filled out my background check and signed my contract and was immediately overwhelmed with information.
After the horrible Mock Class repetition I was SO scared to teach. Look I am not good with kiddos. I have no experience with children. I am the youngest kid in a small family. I don’t get kids. I was terrified so I opened maybe 10 very spaced out classes for the first week.
none of them were booked. Week 2 I had one class, and a week to prepare for it!
I was so nervous, I went over the slides 8 times, I had 30 props ready and my first class was a hot mess. I went so fast thru the slides at the 16 min mark I had no slides left so I skipped to the blank slide and played 3 rounds of tic toc toe. I had read on the Facebook groups about the bad apple feedback and how it can hurt bookings and I was so freaked out.
Well the next day I woke up to a 5 apple feedback! FROM MY FIRST CLASS!
I ended up traveling and staying in cramped Airbnbs for the rest of December and teaching all my classes really awkward places and my first two weeks were such a hot mess, but after about 10 classes I felt confident enough to open my schedule more.
But then the week of Christmas came… and I taught almost 18 classes on Christmas!!!
It was too many for me, after 2 weeks of crazy, I am finally in my groove. I try to teach 25 classes a week. with the goal of teach 100 a month.
Here’s a broad summary:
- Join the Facebook groups! I guarantee someone has already asked a question you want the answer to and its so nice to hear from other teachers.
- Open time slots and just start teaching, just get your feet wet.
- Start getting Certifications. If you want to teach more, be available to teach more types of classes
- Play all the stupid games for tokens, it seems silly but be involved, treat this like a job you care about and want to be involved in.
- Create a teaching space, create a teaching outfit and create your teacher face. Look I teach at 3 am but the only teacher these kids see is the smiling happy one, I never yawn, (if you have to yean hide your face with a prop)
- Start class 30 seconds before the class start time, end class when it hits 25 min, do not teach for less or more!
- Open your schedule months in advance, commit to teaching at set times and stick with it.
- Teach each class like people are going to watch it and scrutinize it, remember that you might be these kids only bright light for the day, be patient, take a breath, smile a little more, slow down.
- Get the kid talking, using full sentences and having fun. That’s what you’re goal is, who cares about anything else.
- Be nice to yourself. Its a really great thing you’re doing. Teaching children is a gift you give not just to that child but the whole universe. You might be that kids only interaction with someone not from China, or someone different. If you stop to think about it, that is a really magical thing.
Main big take always:
- Teaching kids is hard and easy.
- Props don’t necessarily matter, attitude does
- Never “phone it in”
- Only open teaching slots you want filled
Teaching is fun and easy, you are giggling with the kids having a great time. But also teaching is high energy a lot of work and wow, its exhausting. Doing this I found a much deeper and more profound respect for teachers.
Props are important, they are great for helping understand the vocab, they can help with extension. These poor kiddos are staring at a screen, props can keep interest and engagement. But what’s more important than props is your attitude, what you bring to it, thats what entertains and engages a child.
Also act like this class you are being judged, act like this class will be your show case, each class. create that standard for yourself of always teaching a 5 apple class.
Also open slots you can teach, because a Teacher No Show (TNS) can literally ruin your booking chances. Make sure you want to teach what you open. I just opened everything at first and 10 classes in one day is TOO many for me.
- make money at home with minimal effort
- it’s kinda fun, I giggle alot teaching, sometimes the kids are so funny
- you get to learn weird things (do you know the story about Sima Guang?)
- Classes are only 25 min!
- The hours suck (I teach MST so PPT is 3 am)
- I wish it paid more ( my base pay is $7 a class)
You will find what works for you. You may love teaching twice a day and you love it, you might only want to teach one day of the week. Thats the great thing about this gig, it can be what you need it to be.
Disclaimer I only teach 15 to 30 classes a week, I know some people do do this full time and make $1000+ a month, but I am not ready for that type of dedication. Maybe you are and more power to you.
If you want to start teaching for VIPKIDs let me help you! Use my referral code and I will help you thru the mock class and I will share ALL my digital props with you!! <3