I’ve been teaching for VIPKID for a full month now and boy have I learned a lot! I’ve learned that I actually can be a morning person…and like it! I’ve also learned that I can teach with a fever of 101.9. I learned that this company is growing so fast and teachers are in high demand. I also learned that VIPKID listens to our suggestions and really cares about their teachers.
I’ve also learned that when you blow bubbles at your laptop you should aim just above the camera…not the keyboard. Lol
One of the best things I’ve learned is that I LOVE teaching Chinese students how to speak English.
I came into this with no…zero…nada ESL experience. Believe me when I tell you, you can do this job. Not a teacher? No problem. No experience with ESL? No problem. If you have a Bachelor’s Degree and experience working with children, you can apply! If you have an energetic/positive personality and attitude, you can thrive.
Let me address the lessons I learned in this first month. As I do, they’ll shed even more light on how awesome this opportunity is. When I say I can be a morning person and like it, you should know that I was the night owl of all night owls. I love to stay up late chatting with friends after the kids are in bed, or writing, or chilling with my husband. I also love to sleep in and am always thrilled when Saturday rolls around and I can sleep past 7.
I started this job thinking I could teach from 9pm-1am every night. It turns out the peak times are 6am-9am every morning for the EST time zone. That’s not to say you can’t teach at night, but it’s much more difficult to get consistent bookings in the evenings because that is the time that most students are heading to school. It took a few weeks for me to settle in but I am now loving my schedule! I get up, I teach for 3-4 hours and then I have the rest of the day to hang out and play with my kids!
Let me translate that for you…I won’t miss any pool time this summer!
I literally teach in my pajama pants and an orange shirt (VIPKID’s color). I come downstairs, make an egg or some sausage, drink some water, and put on make-up. It cracks me up almost every morning to be putting on make-up with pajama pants on. I love it!
It’s true that I taught with a fever of 101.9. I considered canceling my classes for the day but decided to pop some Advil and power through and I’m so glad I did. It wasn’t so bad! I had a nasty virus, fever, and cough for 9 days straight with a lingering sore throat for 2 weeks. I don’t deny that during that sick time I taught and went straight back to bed, but what other job can you still work with a fever and get paid? I didn’t have to use up any of my “sick days.”
VIPKID does allow you to have 3 days of canceled classes (more or less) but I’m saving those cancelations for a time when I’m really sick…like vomiting, lol. It’s kind of empowering to realize I can get through with an illness.
This company is growing so fast! They really do need teachers and are excitedly offering referral incentives. What does this mean for you? You can begin teaching and start sharing your link and get paid if someone gets hired and starts teaching too. The incentive changes fairly frequently but is most often a small cash bonus. Those bonuses can add up though, so don’t sell yourself short; share your link! Teachers are in high demand! They need you!
VIPKID really has proven to me that they listen to their teachers. There were some complaints here and there that I’ve noticed and they truly take our suggestions and concerns into account and make changes. Like real, solid changes! They are not just some huge company on the other side of the world employing a bunch of cogs in their machine. They listen to concerns, they respond to emails, they make changes when necessary. I love that about them!
I am fully aware that companies who take off so fast will have some growing pains and I love it when they own those bumps in the road and listen to their people. Now, before you read too much into this and think there are tons of negatives, there aren’t. ☺
The changes I’m referring to are things like giving parents one week to leave feedback on your class instead of letting them go back and leave feedback from classes that were 3 months ago, taking a look at referrals who failed their mock class to give them a second chance, stuff like that. Good stuff.
I’ve recently started using bubbles as a reward for my students. (This is a silly and random side note, but if you use bubbles, don’t blow them down toward your keyboard. You’ll have a sticky mess. Common sense, I know! But you’ll thank me later. Aim just above the camera and you’ll be good to go.) The kids love it!
Finally, I LOVE teaching students in China! I love everything about this opportunity. I love that I have a small part in helping a child have a potentially better opportunity for work, life, etc. when he or she grows up. I love seeing their sweet smiles and hearing them thank me for the bubbles. I love hearing a student excitedly waiting my arrival on the other side of the world as they count down the seconds until my camera turns on and they can see me.
I love it when a lightbulb goes off and for the first time they pronounce their t as /t/ (short t sound) and not /tuh/…forever improving and changing the way they speak English. Patuh becomes “pat”…satuh becomes “sat” and so on.
I love making a difference. I love making their day with bubbles or giant candy suckers or putting emoji stickers all over my headset.
These lessons are all created for you, you just get to come in, turn on your camera, and add your own excitement and energy to the lesson. You get to bring it to life for them! I love that!
After a month with VIPKID I’ve taught 167 classes, had 15 positive parent reviews (no negative reviews), zero teacher no-shows (aka I didn’t oversleep—yay!), a few student no-shows (it’s ok, we still get paid) and made over $2,000. All while working from home while my children slept. I have had to do very little prep and no grading. To say this job is fulfilling and inspiring is an understatement. I often feel like Wonder Woman as I sit at my computer changing the life of a little one in my pajama pants and make-up.
Hi. How do you make almost 2000 a month! I’m trying, opening slots but hardly make it to the 700. Can you suggest a tip?
I’m usually opening from 5 to 730 and weekends as much as I can, but not all of them get booked. What can I do?
Please help me
Nicole Shockley says
I have been with them for two weeks and I have not had one single booking. I teach school and I have my schedule opened in the mornings early and in the evenings. I made a cool video and I have 20 years Esl experience. Help!
Hi! I did do all-nighters my first three weekends. I think that helped me get booked. Opening as many peak-peak time slots as you can also helps. Be sure to open your calendar of slots for 4-5 weeks at a time. Even though they can’t book until 2 wks out it helps them to see that you’ll have consistent open slots. Check the 24 hr box on any that aren’t booked but be sure to check them an hour before class to make sure it didn’t book. Good luck!! Sometimes it just takes a little time. 🙂
Thank you so much for this helpful blog, Mary. You have lessened my fears of not being qualified enough to teach. I applied at VIPKIDS 2 weeks ago and am waiting the results of my mock 2 testing. I too have no real teaching experience other than health teaching. I was a school nurse pediatric teacher for 20 years. Although I taught some health education, I have NO ESL experience! I am really hoping to get hired and do this job. It seems like something I will really enjoy. Thank you again for your review.
Gina, did you end up getting the job?
You mentioned signing a contract, what does it entail? How long is a contract? What if you decide it’s not for you, any repercussions?
I am preparing to do my interview and am getting more and more excited about it. I think I would really enjoy this job and will live being able to earn money while still staying home woth my kiddos. Thanks for your input!!!
I applied for this and did not get accepted. I’m unsure why they rejected me.. as I have a bachelors and a masters and two kids of my own along with some college class teaching experience. All they said was that they hope I’ll get more qualifications and apply again, but I’m unsure what more I can get for more qualifications? Any suggestions?
Hi! Just read your comment and not sure if you ever moved forward with this. Same thing happened to me. I had all the qualifications so I reached out and found out I was selecting the wrong buttons. I had to re-apply again and did it on my desktop this time and was accepted right away!
Kayla Franklin says
I have been opening slots in advance and with the 24 hr checked. I have not had any classes booked and I’m trying to not get discouraged.
Gioia Mihuc says
Thank you for this review. You are so bright, cheerful and enthusiastic! I am researching remote jobs and this was so appealing to me! I would like the freedom to do this while my husband and I travel.
This helped me, thank you,