Are you a traveler looking to sustain your travels while still on the road? Are you a stay-at-home mom who needs to make some extra money without leaving your home? Are you interested in teaching English as a second language abroad, but don’t want to fly across the world to do so? Or maybe you’re just someone looking for a job that has more flexibility and can work around your schedule. Well then, working with VIPKID just might be the best job for you!
Becoming a VIPKID teacher is a great way to make easy money from the comforts of your home or from anywhere you please! I know this because I have been with VIPKID for a while now, and I make about $2000 a month working 15-20 hours a week! If this sounds like something you might be interested in, click here to apply or keep reading to learn everything you need to know about teaching with VIPKID!
Below is an index on everything you’ll find in this article. Feel free to click any of the sections below if you are looking for something specific.
- What is VIPKID?
- How Much Money Can I Earn With VIPKID?
- The VIPKID Teacher Hiring Process
- What to Expect Once You’re Hired With VIPKID?
- What Does a Typical Class Look Like With VIPKID?
- The Pros and Cons of Teaching With VIPKID
- My Experience With VIPKID So Far
- I Am Ready to Become a VIPKID Teacher
What is VIPKID?
VIPKID is a leading Chinese online education company providing children in China between the ages of 5 – 12 with a North American elementary education from the comforts of their home. Through the VIPKID program, Chinese kids are linked to native North American English speakers who teach them 25 minute lessons in a virtual classroom based on the US’s Common Core State Standard curriculum.
Since their launch in 2013, VIPKID has grown exponentially enrolling over 800,000 Chinese students and 10,000 American and Canadian teachers to teach these students. VIPKID’s success has gotten both local and international recognition and praise. They are paving the way for online language learning, as well as demonstrating how companies/schools should properly pay their teachers.
How Much Money Can I Earn With VIPKID?
I know… the question you’ve been waiting for and probably the main reason you are reading this article! So what is the pay? Well it depends on you really! Based on your teaching experiences, credentials, and how well you do during the initial interview, your base pay will be between $7-9 per 25-minute class, or $14-18 an hour! Think that’s too low, well I’m not done yet!
On top of the base pay, teachers receive an extra $1 bonus per class for just showing up and doing their job, and then an additional $1 bonus per class if they teach 45 or more classes in one month.
So, hourly payment is calculated as such (base pay+$2)*2 USD, assuming you teach 45+ classes, which is pretty easy to do!
Oh, did I mention that on top of the base pay and bonuses, VIPKID offers their teachers extra incentives as well? For each short notice class (classes booked between 2 to 24 hours before class), teachers receive $2, in addition to the base pay + bonuses. Also, when teachers teach a trial class and the student signs up for VIPKID, they get an additional $5 for every sign up! VIPKID loves their teachers and want to keep us happy by paying us more! At least that’s what I like to think, and this article proves it as well.
Okay, just to make sure you understand what VIPKID pays their teachers, it’s time for a scenario: Yay! Time for math :)
Let’s say Jim is a VIPKID teacher with a base pay of $7.50 per class. This month Jim taught 63 classes, 15 of which were short notice classes. Of the 12 trial classes he taught, 5 kids signed up. How much is Jim getting paid this month?
I know you hate doing math, so I will just tell you the answer, it’s $653.50.
That’s not bad for someone who worked only 31.5 hours in a month in his pjs! I like to call that winning!
So How Much Do I Make?
I have been with VIPKID for 4 months now, and I make an average of $2,000 each month teaching 15-20 hours a week! So yeah, VIPKID has been really good to me and my pockets, especially since I have been traveling through Southeast Asia for the last four months!
I Heard/Read That VIPKID Does Not Pay Their Teachers, Is That True?
That’s total bullshit! VIPKID pays all their teachers. If they didn’t, I sure as hell would not have continued to work with them after the first month. I always get paid on time (the 15th of each month) and sometimes my pay is in my account two days early, so don’t believe the crap you heard. It’s not a scam, you get paid! I have the money to prove it, or this screenshot!
Now you know how you can make easy money and travel like a king in Thailand, you can stop reading now. Apply here and thank me in the comments below! Just kidding, keep reading! There is so much more to know about VIPKID!
The VIPKID Teacher Hiring Process
Step 1: Apply
This is the easiest step of the rigorous VIPKID selection process. However, before you click this link to apply, make sure you meet all the requirements. VIPKID is pretty strict about the teachers they accept, only 6 – 10% of applicants are accepted, so be sure you meet the requirements below to avoid wasting your time as well as theirs.
- Bachelor’s degree (at minimum an Associate’s degree in Early Childhood Education)
- Native English speaker (American or Canadian)
- Experience teaching kids between ages 5-12
- Working computer with high-speed internet and audio capabilities
- Pass a criminal background check (recently implemented)
If you meet these requirements, go to VIPKID to apply. This is where you will enter basic information about yourself, your current location and your resume. Make sure to highlight any and every teaching experience you may have, as this is your ticket to moving to the next step.
Step 2: Interview + Demo Lesson
If your application is accepted, you will be invited to do an interview + demo class. This is where you will have to showcase your teaching skills. VIPKID now gives candidates two options to do the interview, either face to face or a recording.
- Face-To-Face Interview: With this option you will do your interview “in-person” (via online) with a VIPKID admin. Your interviewer will begin the interview by asking you about your qualifications and teaching experience. Once that part is done, your interviewer will act like a 5-year-old child and you will teach the demo lesson to him/her for 15 minutes.
- Recorded Interview: This option is mainly for you convenience, as all you need to do is record yourself teaching the demo class to an imaginary kid. You will have ten minutes to teach ten slides. Note: There will be no one in the classroom with you.
This is the most important step of the application process, as this is where your base pay will be determined and where VIPKID determines if you are a good fit for them! You definitely want to be as prepared as possible.
How Can I Be Sure I Pass the Interview and Demo Lesson?
Assuming you meet the requirements, here are my quick tips to help you pass the VIPKID interview.
Here Are My Quick Tips for Passing the VIPKID Interview
1.) Be prepared: VIPKID gives you the material ahead of time to prepare, so spend some time reviewing it and prepping for the class. Don’t just show up and wing it. It won’t work, regardless of how long you have been teaching.
2.) Be energetic, smile, and praise: No one wants to be taught by a grouchy, low energy, boring teacher. Students will emulate your energy, so give it your all even if you are having a crappy day! Also, be sure to praise your students for everything they do well!
3.) Use TPR: What is TPR? In short, TPR means Total Physical Response, and it’s a method of teaching language based on listening and physical activities. The idea is that by doing something physical when teaching, it will help a child remember, learn faster and make learning more meaningful for them. For example, to teach the word “look” or “see”, a teacher will use their fingers to form a circle around their eyes (like binoculars) and the student should respond by mimicking the teacher’s actions.
4.) Correct mistakes: If the student makes a mistake don’t be afraid to correct them, just remember to do it in a positive manner!
5.) Talk slowly: By speaking slowly, you give your student the opportunity to understand what you are saying. Also, you want to avoid complicated words and use simple words and phrases! Ex: Instead of saying “do you know what this is?” say “What is this?” It’s simple and still conveys the question you want to ask.
6.) Use a reward system/props: Have a reward system, such as a smiley face, and give the student a tooth each time they do a good job! Also, use props for the class. You don’t have to go out and buy props, just scan around your house and use objects appropriate for the class. For example, for my interview I used an apple, banana, and hand-drawn letters as props, and a lot of TPR.
7.) A good background: For the interview and all classes after, you will need a good background, good lighting and quiet surroundings. A blank/white wall for a background is perfect! If you don’t have a white wall, a solid-colored wall with no distractions will work fine as well. You will lose points if you don’t have good lighting and a good background.
8.) Observe 70/30 rule: You want to make sure the student is speaking the majority of the class! If you are talking 90% of the class, you’re doing it wrong! Encourage the student to repeat after you, to answer questions in full sentences, and read words on the slides.
9.) Good internet connection: You don’t want to have spotty internet when doing this interview, as they will disqualify you if they feel your internet connection is not adequate. After all, this job does depend on a good internet connection.
10.) Be mindful of your time: Pace yourself throughout the lesson. You want to spend between 1-1.5 minutes on each slide. Any more means on other slides you will spend less time or go over the allotted time. Extra tip: Don’t spend too much time on the review slides.
11.) Be aware of your camera space: Test your camera ahead of time to check how you look, how to correctly show your props and rewards, etc. Lastly, sit back a bit from the camera so you can properly use the camera space. This way, your face, hands and props show without being cut off!
12.) Wear an orange shirt: Though it is no longer required to wear an orange shirt while teaching, you do get extra points for wearing one during the interview. It shows your awareness of the company and its policies. If you don’t have an orange shirt, don’t sweat it! Just wear a plain non-distracting shirt.
Step 3: Teacher Training
After completing step 2, you will be given 6 hours of training materials to review. The materials, which will be in the form of videos and PowerPoint, will give you an overview of VIPKID, their policies, standards, technology and curriculum. After reviewing the materials, you will be given a quiz. You will need to get 80% correct in order to make it to the next step! No need to stress about it, you can redo the quiz multiples times. Once you’ve passed the quiz, you will be asked to schedule your first mock class/practicum.
Step 4: Mock Class (Teacher Practicum)
During this step you will complete up to two mock classes with one of the VIPKID teachers (mock mentor). The mock class will be just like a real class, the purpose of this is to see how you handle teaching online. You will teach a class to your mock mentor, who will also play the role of a 5-year-old Chinese student. Each mock class lasts about an hour and will be broken up into three parts. Below is a general breakdown of how the mock classes will go.
1.) Introductions: The first five minutes will be introductions. This will be your opportunity to ask questions you may have, like how to teach a slide or explain something.
2.) Teach Class: You will teach for 25 minutes, however it will be broken up into 2 parts. For Mock Class 1, you will teach 2 levels: Beginners (level 2), and Intermediate (level 5). For the first part you will teach a level 2 lesson for 15 minutes, then the mock mentor will stop you to give feedback. The mock mentor will tell you what’s going well and how to improve. After this short pause you will teach a level 5 lesson for the remaining 10 minutes. Be sure to implement the feedback you are given during the second half. It will show your ability to quickly apply feedback. As for Mock Class 2, assuming you pass Mock Class 1, you will teach only one level (whichever level you scored the highest on Mock 1). You will teach the first 14 slides for 15 minutes then get feedback and teach the remaining slides for 10 minutes.
3.) Feedback: Once you finish teaching the lesson, you will be given feedback on your overall mock class for ~10 minutes. If your mentor is nice, they might tell you your next step. The next step could be moving straight into teaching (less common), doing a second mock class (more common) or unfortunately, not being accepted as a teacher with VIPKID :(. Nonetheless, the official decision of your next step will come via email.
As for me, I was part of the lucky few that went straight to signing my contract and becoming a teacher after the first mock class. If you have to do a second mock class don’t feel discouraged, it just means they want to see how you improve with the feedback you are given. Having to do a second mock class is seriously becoming the norm!
Tips for Passing the Mock Classes/Practicum:
The tips I provided to help you pass the interview process are 100% applicable for the mock classes, and should definitely be implemented during your practicums. In addition to those tips, here are a few extras:
1.) Implement feedback: Take the feedback you were given during the interview or mock 1 to improve your teaching!
2.) Show or simplify instructions: Rather than explaining to the student what they will do next, just demonstrate it. For example, don’t say “next you will look at the picture, find the letter T and circle the letter T”, rather circle the letter T, while saying “circle T”. Think of it as “I Do, We Do, You Do”. Remembering this and doing it during class will definitely help!
3.) Encourage student output: The student should be talking on every slide as well as saying the target sentences (you get the list of sentences before class) as often as possible. Also, remember to encourage the student to answer in full sentences!
Step 5: Sign Contract + Submit Required Materials
Yay! The hard part is over! Now you will review the VIPKID contract, sign it and upload the required materials for approval. Required materials include the signed contract and scanned copies of your bachelor’s degree, government issued ID, and teaching certifications, if you have any. For the next half of this step you will upload additional things to create your profile for the VIPKID parents and students. This will include a short greeting video, a few photos of yourself and a completed W-9 form so you can get paid!
Step 6: Start Teaching
You are officially a VIPKID teacher after you have successfully completed step 5. Now you can open time slots so students can book you!
Oh, and for successfully completing the rigorous application process, VIPKID pays you $40. See, I told you they love to give their teachers money :) <- No longer offered by VIPKID.
What to Expect Once You’re Hired With VIPKID
What Pay Should I Expect the First Month I Am Hired?
I am going to keep it a hundred! Don’t expect to be bathing in money and make $2,000+ the first month with VIPKID! The first month will be slow, as you have to build your reputation, get regulars and increase your VIPKID booking rates. And even though VIPKID helps you the first month by giving you a few classes to start off, they do not guarantee a steady stream of classes.
I started with VIPKID during the worst possible time, Chinese New Year. This is when bookings are drastically decreased, as students are enjoying their 2-3 week vacation! I didn’t get my first class until 25 days after my contract started, when CNY came to an end! I was only able to work 10 hours that month and made $160 (not bad though)! However, the following month I made $2,200. So two things to take away from my situation is don’t apply during CNY and be patient the first month, things will pick up!
Do I Have to Come Up With My Own Lesson Plans?
NOPE! VIPKID creates all the lessons, so all you have to do is show up and teach! Okay, you can’t just show up. You’ll need to review the lesson and prep for the class. Prep time differs for each teacher, but it’s usually 3-10 minutes. After a few weeks of teaching, prep time is cut down to like a minute, since most times you’ve already taught the class. Although there is already a set curriculum, teachers have the freedom to teach the way they want! Oh, and did I mention that there are no papers to grade, no essays to read or crazy parents to deal with!?
Besides teaching the class, the only other thing required of teachers is writing feedback for each student. Writing and submitting feedback for each student after class is mandatory for every teacher. If a teacher neglects to submit feedback after 24 hours of teaching a class, they won’t get paid for that class!
What Will I Need to Teach as a VIPKID Teacher?
1.) Computer/Laptop: I currently use my Macbook Air, and it works perfectly for me.
2.) Webcam: I recommend investing in a good quality webcam. My favorite is the Logitech HD Pro Webcam C920.
3.) Headset: Many teachers use a professional headset like this one, where background noise can be muted. Since I refuse to add unnecessary stuff to my travel backpack, I use my small headphones (like the ones given with iPhones) and teach somewhere quiet.
4.) Good Internet Connection: This is pretty self-explanatory, especially since it’s an online company! I travel with a mobile hotspot from Tep Wireless as a backup.
5.) Reward System: Though there is an internal reward system in the VIPKID classroom where you can give a student a star every time they do something well, it’s way more rewarding for the student to have additional rewards.
Materials You Will Eventually Need
Since I am a long-term traveler and live out of my backpack, I keep the amount of props I have to the basics. You do not need 1001 props for class. I found the basics, and my silliness works wonders. With the basics, I still manage to get my time slots filled with mostly regulars and still make my desired monthly pay! I like to think my minimalist classroom and teaching style is awesome lol, since students keep coming back. Anywho, here are the basic props you really need:
- ABC and 123 Flashcards
- Whiteboard/dry erase board and dry erase markers
- Notebook and crayons or markers: Perfect for making your own props, if you need to.
- Puppets/stuffed animals
Am I Required to Teach at Specific Times With VIPKID?
Your teaching schedule is whatever you want it to be. Teachers are 100% in control of their schedule. You pick the days and times you want to work!
When I started with VIPKID there was a minimum requirement to work 7.5 hours a week, but they did away with that, which means you can truly work whenever you want! If you want to work only one hour one week and 80 hours the next, you can! There’s no maximum or minimum hours you must work! This is the perfect job for people looking to make extra cash, stay-at-home moms, travelers, and well, anyone really!
So How Does Scheduling Work Anyway?
Once you are a VIPKID teacher, you will have access to your teacher portal. In the portal you will be able to choose your teaching availability in time slots between 9:00am – 9:30pm Beijing time. You can open your schedule one month in advance, but students can only book you on a weekly basis. Once you put in your schedule for the week or month, you can alter it as many times as you want, as long as a student did not book that time slot.
As for me, I work about 15 – 20 hours a week. Most weeks most of my time slots are booked during “peak times”. Peak times are from 6:00pm – 9:00pm Beijing time Monday – Friday and 9:00am – 9:30pm Beijing time on the weekends! Those are the times when most Chinese students take their VIPKID lessons and demand for teachers is highest.
How Do Students Book Me, or How Do I Pick VIPKIDs to Teach?
With VIPKID, you don’t pick the students you teach nor will you be teaching the same kid every class! Students (more like the parents) are the ones who pick their teachers each week, and teachers teach whoever books them. This means you will not teach the same kid every week, unless a kid or parent loves your teaching style and books you each week, becoming your regular student.
Can I Travel and Teach With VIPKID?
Of course! I wouldn’t be telling you about VIPKID if you couldn’t. Well, maybe I would because it’s pretty awesome and you can make easy money! I am traveling full-time with just a small 40L backpack, and I still manage to make about $2,000 a month with VIPKID. So far I have been to Bali, Thailand, Cambodia, and Malaysia, and next month I plan on backpacking through Europe for three months. I even wrote an article on “How to Teach with VIPKID while Traveling” so if you are a traveler (or enjoy taking vacations), know that you can travel and still teach with VIPKID.
What Does a Typical Class Look Like With VIPKID?
What is Teaching With VIPKID Like?
Teaching with VIPKID is not difficult at all! It’s a pretty sweet teaching gig if you ask me! You show up, load up the PowerPoint, release your inner child, act silly, make funny faces, sing off-key, play with toys, laugh, and scream all while teaching English to a student! It’s like being paid to act silly, be positive and have fun!
Prior to class, VIPKID gives their students pre-class work to complete before you teach them. It’s almost like homework, but more fun. The pre-class work helps the student familiarize themselves with phrases, vocabulary words, and concepts of the lesson, and it’s the teacher’s job to reinforce the learning during the 25-minute class. Since VIPKID is a full immersion teaching program, only English will be spoken in the classroom, which means you do not need to learn Mandarin to be a VIPKID teacher (thank gosh).
As for the logistical stuff, you will be teaching on a one to one basis. One student and one teacher for 25 minutes! All classes will take place on VIPKID’s own teaching platform! The platform is very similar to Skype, but more sophisticated. When you enter the classroom, it will look like the picture below! You will have three boxes, one where you will upload the lesson, and the other two are where you will see yourself teaching and the student.
All lessons are made as PowerPoints and usually consist of 26-30 slides. Once uploaded into the platform, you and the student can draw, write, type, and even circle objects on the slides. At the moment, VIPKID is slowly doing away with the old PPT lessons and implementing new and interactive PowerPoints where students can drag and drop objects, play sounds and so much more. This means classrooms are becoming even more fun for the students (and the teachers too) :)
What are the VIPKIDs (Students) Like?
Teaching VIPKIDs is not like teaching your typical American student, as 90% of those students don’t want to be in school. There will be those who want to sleep or play with their toys instead of being in class, but most of the VIPKIDs you teach want to be in class. Most are eager to learn and participate, especially since they know they are not going to a boring class, but a fun, silly and interactive class. These students are motivated and will surprise you! I seriously love these kids, especially my regular kids. They’re awesome, if you ask me!
Currently, all students are 5 to 12-years-old and their levels of English vary. However, VIPKID recently introduced their PreVIP program for younger kids. If you get a certificate to teach PreVIP kids, you will teach students younger than 5 but older than 2 years old.
The Pros and Cons of Teaching With VIPKID
Nothing and nobody is perfect, including VIPKID. This is why I am laying out the good and the bad of working with VIPKID, with no filter or sensor. This way you know exactly what you will get into if you choose to apply to be a VIPKID teacher. As for me, I believe the advantages outweigh the disadvantages, and 4 months down the line, I don’t regret it one bit! Enough of my blabbering, here are the pros and cons of working with VIPKID:
Benefits of Teaching With VIPKID
The flexibility you have with this position is amazing, and it’s one of the main reasons people seek out this job. You can work whenever you want, whatever day you please and wherever you want. It’s an ideal job that works around your schedule. This is not a quality you will get with most jobs. Did you know that in January VIPKID was listed as the 5th best company to work from home with on Forbes’ Top 100 Work from Home Companies? Don’t believe me, you can check it out here.
2.) The Pay
Compared to most online companies, VIPKID pays their teachers fairly well. So well that some VIPKID teachers are leaving their full-time jobs to work full-time hours with VIPKID. With the ability to make $22 an hour, it’s a pretty ideal job. Can you think of a part-time position that pays you this well while working in your pjs or while backpacking through Guatemala? I didn’t think so!
3.) Opportunities to Make More Money
On top of your hourly pay, VIPKID gives you opportunities to make more money every month with their incentives and bonuses. For example, last month VIPKID gave $100,000 worth of extra money to 1,000 VIPKID teachers for having the most amount of excellent parent feedback. I got myself an extra $100 for being awesome. VIPKID also shows their appreciation for teachers who teach during the holidays with gifts and extra money! Like I said, they love paying their teachers :)
4.) Not Much is Required of You
As mentioned earlier, being a VIPKID teacher does not require you to do much! Come to class on time, teach a student in a fun, positive and energetic environment for 25 minutes and finally write feedback for the student after class. It’s a fairly easy job to accomplish, especially since you don’t have to create your own lesson plans, grade papers, assign homework or communicate with parents. All of that is done for you, you just need to be an awesome teacher and teach the lesson!
5.) Opportunity for Advancement
After you’ve completed your first contract, VIPKID often offer teachers a raise as well as the opportunity to become a mock class mentor or a teacher mentor. So with VIPKID, there are opportunities for advancement.
6.) Ongoing Trainings and Workshops
VIPKID is constantly providing additional trainings, evaluations, feedback and workshops to help teachers improve their teaching quality. By doing this, VIPKID continuously improves their teachers and the quality of education the students receive. As for trainings, they come in the form of PPTs and videos, while workshops are led by teacher mentors via video conferences. You are constantly learning and improving with VIPKID.
7.) VIPKID is Always Improving
VIPKID is growing rapidly, but they are making sure they are providing the best quality education to their students and the best working environment and ideal job for their teachers. They do this by constantly improving their system, curriculum, policy and overall company. VIPKID also listens to their teachers, take in their feedback and suggestions and make improvements, that’s why this company is becoming one of the leading online education companies in the world.
8.) The Community/Support
VIPKID does not throw you to the wolves once you become a teacher! You are supported in so many ways, not just by VIPKID but also by teachers around the world. You would think the VIPKID teachers would see you as competition, but they don’t! They are always there to help, give tips, share prop/reward ideas, and so much more. The VIPKID community is pretty amazing! The community is spread through various platforms such as Facebook, Skype group chats, forums and even in-state meetups. With VIPKID you are never alone, even if you teach at home alone in your pjs!
9.) The Kids are Awesome
The children are really a delight to teach. Since I teach mostly younger kids, they are super adorable and love being silly! They enjoy coming to class and if they missed you one class or couldn’t book you they will surely ask what happened. I had one student who said “I love you Teacher J” and gave me a virtual hug after class, I cried! I love those kids, they truely are what make VIPKID amazing for me, the money is just a bonus.
What are the Downsides to Teaching With VIPKID
1.) Teacher Cancellation Policy is Strict
There are two things VIPKID is strict about, the application process and their teacher cancellation policy. Teachers are unfortunately allowed only six cancellations per contract, and after the 6th cancellation VIPKID can terminate your contract! I should mention that 3 cancelled classes in one calendar day is counted as one official cancellation, and within one day you can only get a maximum of 2 official cancellations. Nonetheless, for every class you do not show up for for whatever reason without informing VIPKID, or you do so with less than 2 hours before class, you will be deducted $10 from your pay. Yeah, I know that totally went over your head, right? Crazy complicated and strict. Well, I can help!
Remember our VIPKID teacher Jim from my scenario in the “How Much Can I Earn With VIPKID” section? Well, I forgot to tell you he was sick one day and didn’t show up for his scheduled 8 classes. He completely forgot to let VIPKID know! Poor Jim. So due to his sick day, $80 was deducted from his final pay and he used 2 of his 6 cancellations! So Jim really only made $573.50 that month.
*I should note that VIPKID does understand that things happen and emergencies come up. This is why they recently implemented a “soft” cancellation policy, where under certain circumstances VIPKID may invalidate your cancellation (meaning it won’t count towards your record, nor affect your pay) if supporting documents can be provided. These situations include power outages, natural disasters, serious illness, death, labor or birth. So yeah, it’s getting better.
2.) Have to Pay Taxes!
Even though VIPKID is a Chinese company, you are required to complete a W-9 form before signing the contract, which means you need to pay taxes. Paying taxes isn’t the issue, rather it’s the fact that you will have to PAY MORE taxes, because as a VIPKID teacher you are not an employee, rather you are an independent contractor. Why do you pay more you ask? Well, as an independent contractor federal and state taxes will not be withheld from your pay! This means you are responsible for paying your taxes on your own! I know, just when you thought you were going to escape Uncle Sam’s clutches or have an easy tax season.
So now you know the ugly truth behind those easy thousands of dollars you’ll rack up with VIPKID! Those thousands will be a lot less, as you will need to set money aside for taxes :( If you want more information about being an independent contractor, here is a pdf with FAQ and another article that does a great job explaining why you pay more taxes as an independent contractor.
3.) It’s a Part-Time Gig
Though you can work way more than 40 hours a week and make full-time pay with VIPKID if you choose, your position is still part-time. Unfortunately, this means you are not given any benefits or health insurance, but then again what part-time position does?
4.) No Notification for New Bookings
When you receive a new booking, VIPKID does not notify you in any way. You have to check the portal often to find out if you have a new class, as students can book you at anytime throughout the week as long as it’s not within 24 hours of the class. However, the VIPKID app does send you a notification letting you know you have a class in 15 minutes, which might not be too bad if you are not far from a laptop!
5.) Hours are Not Guaranteed
Though I personally have not had issues with my time slots being booked, many teachers do complain about hours being sporadic and not getting bookings. As mentioned earlier, this will definitely be the case when starting off with VIPKID. It takes time and you need to build your reputation. Having a consistent schedule and doing a kick-ass job with the few kids you do get in the beginning will help drastically as you can potentially get regulars, i.e. guaranteed booked slots. So be patient and perfect your art, the students (and the moola) will come! After all, there are over 100,000 students and only 10,000 VIPKID teachers, so there’s no need to worry!
6.) Time Difference
Since VIPKID classes can only be taught between the hours of 9:00am – 9:30pm BJT, depending on where you live these hours may not be ideal working hours for you! For example, if you’re on Eastern Standard Time, your peak teaching hours will be between 6:00am – 9:00am on weekdays (6:00pm – 9:00pm Beijing time), which can suck for people that aren’t morning people! However, some people don’t mind it and find that they get most of the day to do whatever they want and their body adjusts well. So far time difference hasn’t been an issue for me. I have been in Southeast Asia and the time difference is only an hour, let’s see how I do once I am in Europe.
My Experience With VIPKID So Far!
As you know I have been with VIPKID now for four months and I truly love it. My partner in crime, Ben, even say it’s crazy how I light up when I am teaching. For me, VIPKID is not a job, it’s a hobby! It’s pretty awesome being paid to do something I love and working with kids. I am grateful I found VIPKID.
VIPKID is now my main source of income and is supplying all my monetary needs so we can continue traveling. It has been super good to me and I have no plans on quitting! Besides being able to do something I love, and getting paid well, I love the flexibility of VIPKID. I love that when I am on the road traveling I can reduce my hours or not work at all, and when I am settled into a destination I can work as many hours as I please.
VIPKID is great, but I am not saying there aren’t days when I am exhausted and need a break from teaching. Sometimes IT issues make me want to pull out my hair or I am ready to choke a student for being a pain in the ass. However, those days don’t outweigh the good ones at all, and that is why VIPKID works for me.
I am not the only teacher who feels this way about being a VIPKID teacher. Most, if not all VIPKID teachers love their job and the company they’re working for. There are many VIPKID teachers who took this part-time gig to make extra cash with no intentions of liking it and ending up falling in love with it. It’s totally worth a try if you are interested, because you just might love it and if you don’t, you can always quit!
Would I Recommend VIPKID to Other People?
Umm, clearly! I did write an entire guide to convince you to join this awesome company! I feel like I have found gold, hence why I am sharing this company with you, so you too can feel the joy of working with those amazing kids and a company that gets it and pays well. However, I will say that you should only apply if you like kids and enjoy working with them! Otherwise, you just might hate this job. Though, I think those cute and adorable kids just might make you fall in love with VIPKID!
I’m Ready to Become a VIPKID Teacher
I know that was a lot to read, but now at least you know everything you need to know about VIPKID to apply. If you have any questions about applying or working with VIPKID, feel free to comment below.
So, what are you waiting for?! Apply now!
Good luck on your application! Can’t wait for you to join the VIPKID Community!
Please Note: This article will be updated periodically to make sure you have the most up-to-date information on VIPKID.
Inspired? Pin this for later…
Diane P. Smith says
Question: I have a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and a Master’s degree in Diverse Learners-Special Ed, and ESL.
Do I need to write to the two Universities and get copies of those two degrees
so that I can provide them to you?
1. Brigham Young University-Provo, UT: Bachelor of Science, 1984
2. Washington State University-Vancouver, WA: Master’s Education, 2000
This is erroneous information and extremely outdated. It was true two years ago, but pay has decreased as well as incentives. The teaching hours have been extended as the company has gone global. Overall, however, there are fewer students because of the new Chinese regulations and the global side has not yet ramped up enough to accommodate the current teachers. There is just too much to correct….I can assure you, however, that it is no longer
a lucrative gig.
Hi jazzy! Your blog posts are perfect for me since I am a VIPKid teacher who plans to travel while teaching. I’d love to keep up with your experiences. Do you have social media or a Youtube page?
Hi Jazzy! Thank you for writing such a thorough article. Do you know if they consider tutoring experience to be teaching experience? I’m not sure what to put in the initial application step to this point, as I have worked previously as a language arts tutor, but never a teacher. I know it’s not the same thing, but I don’t want to disadvantage myself by not counting it in this step… Your opinion would be very much appreciated! =)
Hey Jazzy! I am going through the interview express quiz and I’m not finding info to answer questions. That’s how I found ur blog lol please help lol thanx in advance 😊☺️
I just became a teacher with VIP and stumbled across this awesome article. My question is about the pay. My friend said he made $2800 per month at 35 hours a week. I see the ad says you can make $2000 a month working 15-20 hours. I’m having trouble understanding how that all works out. My base rate per class is $8. If I work 20 hours (40 classes) at $8 per class that’s $320. In a four week month that’s just over $1200. Even with the extra $1 or $2, I’m having trouble figuring it all out . You’re a pro at this so I figured you might be able to help to have it make sense! Thanks!
I have an interview on Wed with VIPKID.
I’m a stay at home mother of two, do you have any tips to passing the interview??!
I have a white board and conveniently have plenty of props I can find around the house since my kids are under 3 years of age!
Your article is extremely helpful!!
It’s been 3 years since I last worked so I’m definitely nervous. I would extremely appreciate any more advice you could give me.
Hope to hear from you soon!
I really appreciate your time and effort in helping the rest of us!!!
I really hope I pass and get to experience teaching in the comfort of my home!! I am really excited.
Thank you for writing about your experiences with VIPKID. Are you still with them?
Could you talk a little more about the flexible schedule? My impression was that you had to commit to the same schedule for 6 months. Am I totally wrong about this?
I occasionally have to take trips, and living in Indonesia, cannot always be sure about good internet. So I’d like the ability to be able to schedule a free week once in a while.
Hey Willow, yes I am still with them still-going on two years soon. I could probably say my schedule changes all the time, it’s never the same from week to week as I travel permanently. You do not need to commit to the same schedule for six months. That would never work for me as half of the time I barely know what or where I will be the following week. The only thing is that students book classes one week in advance, so you would just have to know your availability for that week that they are booking and open slots so they can book it. If you are not available that week just don’t open slots. If you find that you realize you are available (but did open slots) after the “booking fenzy”, you can still open slot to be booked last minute (24hr before). If they are filled you get an extra $2 on top of your regular pay. Flexibility is one of the main reasons why I have this job otherwise it wouldn’t be for me.
Thank you for writing this. I have applied to VIPKID before I found this but have yet to do my interview/sample video. I had to get a new pc, headphones and get it all working…in the meantime, I found you, which has helped me get over my cold feet. After reading your inspiring writing on VIPKID I am excited to do my introduction.
I just graduated with my MA in Sociology and I am teaching sporadically at my university, I even enjoy teaching freshmen.
I have some classroom experience with elementary students as well (summer school) which was fun but unruly (20-30 fifth graders). I have tutored at a home for delinquent boys, and I love being goofy and making learning fun for kids. It is so much easier in a one on one situation with youngsters.
I passed the Praxis core and middle school ELA tests last year. I do not have a teachers license in my state, but while I was waiting for my pc to come in the mail I completed 120 hours online TEFL certification.
Though I don’t remember where I read it, I am pretty sure VIPKID wants you to agree to get TEFL certified within 90 days of contracting with them, it is not required to begin, but they want it eventually. I hope they accept myTEFL.com, which had good reviews and seems to be widely used. I don’t remember seeing this mentioned in your guide, so it might be new.
My question is this, with my qualifications and some teaching experience, do you think I will max out the pay scale? Assuming my demo is great and the technology works and they like me…
If you need a certificate, myTEFL.com was the cheapest, especially if you are a recent graduate. Also, myTEFL has job postings for teaching in many countries, if you fall in love with a place and want to stay for a school year you might like teaching the kids in person or doing in-person tutoring. (I think VIPKID pays better, considering there is no grading and lesson prep sounds pretty simple).
Thanks again for writing in so much detail about VIPKID. I hope I make it.
Does the Safari browser work with Vipkid classroom? Do I need a mouse if I have my touchpad (I have a Macbook Air)?
Also, do they allow you to practice in the classroom before you actually start recording?
I have a Macbook Air as well and the touchpad works perfect. However, you may find it easier have a mouse especially when you are teaching them about “mouse” and how to use it.
Yes, I believe you can practice in the classroom now with the new recruitment process. Double check with you contact person via email.
Hope this helps Eve.
Thanks so much for sharing this, Jazzy! You’re the second review blog on VIPKid and I’m in the quiz stage of the prepping.
Your thorough details have been more than helpful!
Glad to help Dami :)
Hi Jazzy, Love your blog. I am thinking of being a VIPKID teacher. I have a question about equipment. I have a MacBook Pro, and earbuds, but not an external webcam. Do you need one for the interviews?
Nope, your built in camera should do the trick. I use my built in camera to teach. People sometimes buy an external webcam to improve the quality of their video. It’s up to you, as it’s not required to have one.
I came across the VIPKID opportunity on FB and signed up. But now that I read your article I realized that one needs to have some sort of teaching experience which unfortunately I do not have. Do I still go through the process of giving the quiz and making the demo video if at the end I am not going to get through because of the non teaching background. Your thoughts..
P.S. Just a bit about me, was in the IT sector but taking a break to be with my kid and was looking for work for home opportunities when I came across this one.
Normally, the applications are vetted during the sign up stage were if you don’t have any experience they will decline your application. Was your application accepted? Also do you have any experience working with kids, after school programs, volunteering, anything of that sort might work. If you do and they accepted you to the next stage, I would do it and see what happen.
Laryssa Adame says
I’m currently working for VIPKID. I’ve lived in Vietnam before and have considered moving back and would like to continue my job with VIPKID. I’m worried that I won’t get enough hours booked. What is the peak for booking in Southeast Asia? Is it possible to have a full time schedule there? I’d ideally like to open my booking from 10am – 5pm (Mon-Fri). Do these time slots typically get booked? Thank you so much! Love your blog!
Hey Laryssa, we were just in Vietnam for a month. The working hours are great, you can open slots from 8am-8:30pm. I worked weekdays from 4:30- 9pm and on weekends from 9am-9pm. On occasions I would open morning slots but only a few would get filled. However during the summertime and Chinese holidays those times will definitely fill. As for the internet it was great. We had fiber optic and had the best upload and download speed we ever had. Hope this helps.
Hey there Jazzy,
I have applied and I will be scheduling my interview, just waiting on the proper webcam and headset. I want to make sure I ace this. I am great with children and I have a positive and bubbly personality. My only issue is I want to test my presentation, and quality of it, do you think you could work with me?
Do I really need a webcam if there is a camera built into my Macbook? The information on the VIPKID site is unclear on this. Please advise. Also- I sent you an email with some additional questions. Thank you for being such a wonderful resource to others!
No you do not need a webcam. Your camera built into the Macbook is perfect. That’s what I’ve been using.
Hi Jazzy, Your blog helped me tons getting through my interview with VIP kid and I just signed a contract with them today! Unfortunately I didn’t realize that you could only sign up in 6 month periods and I will be traveling in April for 3 months. I’ve read in some places that you have to work 15 classes a week at least. There’s just no way this is going to possible for me with a Nepal Expedition on my calendar. Then I read your blog and saw that there’s no minimum hours any more. Is it true? Can I not schedule anything for a few weeks and not get fired?
Congrats! There is no need to worry about taking time off as there are no required amount of classes to teach anymore. I took a month an a half without telling them and it was perfectly fine. My schedule wasn’t affected and my regulars found their way back to me once I started teaching again. I recommend you start teaching right away, then when April rolls around you let your regulars know you’ll be gone for a while if you have any and then take a month and half off! Then you can continue to take the time off without telling VIPKID or submit a ticket and let them know that you will be away for a month and a half. It’s your choice. Also if you are taking your laptop with you I recommend teaching a class or two if you are worried about it. This job is perfect for teaching while traveling. After all that’s what I am doing. Hopes this put you at ease!
Oh…and a question I forgot to ask in my previous comment! Is there a “better” option to choose for the interview (face-to-face vs recorded)?
Thanks again for your help!
There is no better option, just preferences. I personally think the face-to face is better as you can get back feedback immediately and incorporate it in the second half of the interview. Hopes this helps :)
Thanks so much for the thorough information! I’m about to begin the VIPKID application process and am working on updating my resume. I previously taught Social Studies and Content Literacy at the middle school level for 17 years (specifically Grades 7 & 8). Do you think VIPKID will consider those ages to be appropriate, in terms of my qualifications, relevant experience, etc.? Thanks for your help :)
Hey Erin, the age doesn’t matter rather the it’s the experience that counts. They want to see that you have experience working with children. And also those ages are appropriate as they would be the ages of some of the students in intermediate and advance levels.
Great article :) Thanks a lot for this.
I’m currently at the post kick-off meeting stage of my application and should hopefully be uploading my docs tomorrow or the day after and signing the contract :). A question I have is can I get paid into a non US/Canada bank account? I believe it is possible.
Also, the VIP kick-off meeting presenter today said VIP now pay an extra $16 per month on top of your salary to pay the exchange rate fees and bank fees. That’s really great!
Hey Conor, it is definitely possible to get paid in a non US/Canada bank, as many traveling teachers do this! Before they did pay the exchanges fees but it seems like they do that now according to you! That is great news for anyone with a non non US/Canada bank. Thanks for sharing that :)
Demrie Alonzo says
I’ve been with VIPKID for three weeks now and have had two no-shows and taught 3 trial classes. I had a lousy bio video so made a new one and sent it through Freshdesk and they said they updated it, but what I see on my app is still the old one. I’m trying to figure out ways to promote myself to Chinese parents. I signed up with Weibo, but only some of it is translated into English which makes it hard to maneuver. I just feel “stuck” and I don’t know if there even is a way to promote myself better. Any suggestions?
You need to give yourself time. The first few weeks at VIPKID is very difficult for new teachers (especially during Chinese New Year), the reason is as simple as you are new so parents aren’t likely to book you yet, but VIPKID tries to help by giving you trial classes! What you can do is go all out for any class you do get, trial or major and make that student fall in love with you so they will continue to book you or even sign up! That alone help me get returnees my second month. By the way, you are doing way better than I did, on week three I hadn’t taught a single class but my second month, the ball started rolling and I made over $2,000 bucks! Just give it some time, almost every new teacher is or was in your boat. As for the video just send another ticket to freshdesk letting them know that the old video is still on your profile and not the new one, provide a screenshot. Also make sure your educational experience is correctly (not zero) listed on your profile as well as any certifications you may have. It’s difficult to promote to the parents without any classes taught, or apple ratings that they can judge you on, hence why you will receive more trials in the beginning. Oh and trials are infamously known for not showing up as the class are free for them so they don’t care if they miss it. But so do show-up. Anywho, in the end, you just need to give it some time! Best of luck Demrie.
Hello: I’m in the process already to become a teacher for VIPKID. What web pages or apps do you suggest for the intro video?
I’ll appreciate anything you can’t tell me
Hey Andrea, a simple video introducing yourself with kid friendly music is fine. I used imovie on my mac computer. I believe it’s free and comes with most macs. If you have a pc, windows have movie maker. Hope this helps.
Hi, I was wondering how they check the mbps. It says you need 20 mbps but you said that most people don’t have that much. I did at test and it shows only 6.5 mbps. Would I be disqualified at the interview or would they not be able to tell what my mbps is?
I honestly don’t think they will be able to tell the exact number. They will judge it based on your video quality, stability etc. If you can, just make sure to do you interview/mock classes somewhere where you have excellent wifi for at least the application process, and worry about a solution later if you need too. Because you don’t want to gamble, or test your wifi luck during the interview or mock classes.
I work for this overrated company also. I think 51Talk is better but I got fired because my computer kept freezing and sometimes my internet was going out. Oh well. VipKid needs to to get rid of that strict policy and they need to make a toll free number so we teachers can call them right away in case our internet goes out.
Anyway, I’m in the process of creating my own website and advertising directly to intermediate English learners online so I don’t have to worry about these damned Chinese companies stopping my income. Good luck Jazzy.
I don’t think it’s a strict policy. It’s fairly accept for an online company to ask for their “employees” to have reliable internet! As it’s not fair for the student/parent who are paying with their hard earn money to get quality service. At least that’s my taught.
Anywho, I am glad to hear you are finding a solution to keep your income flowing! Best of luck to you too Dameon.
Thank you for your wonderful blog, it has really inspired me! I love your enthusiasm and insightful advice!
I have a similar question to Maria’s. I am a US citizen but will soon have residence status in Germany. Do you know if I need to be technically a resident of the US to be eligible to teach with VIPKID?
You don’t have to be a resident of the US to apply, but you do need to be a US/ Canadian Citizen to apply. (Now they say you need to be able to work in US/Canada to apply) I was not living in the U.S. when I applied. I was somewhere in Thailand. You should be fine!
Hey, Thanks for a great post on VIPKid!
I noticed that you used a MacBook Air and I am in the interviewing stage using a MacBook Pro, but I’ve come across issues three times with the classroom software for the interview. Do you use Safari, Chrome or a different browser? I’ve been using the latest version of Chrome, but all three times the interviewer had problems and I’m looking for recommendations.
I use Chrome predominately and have firefox open as a backup. What is the problem that your interviewer is having because it could be the internet and not necessarily the window browser.
Maria Hast says
I read about this opportunity and somehow found your posts, which I love and appreciate!!
I´m from the US but I´m living now in Spain, do I have to have a US address or a bank account in the USA?
You don’t have to have a US address, the address where you are staying in Spain is perfectly fine. I don’t think you need a US account but it does make things easier as you can avoid wiring fees for each pay check depending on your bank.
Thank you so much for your post as you answered a lot of questions I had. I was just wondering if you knew of similar companies that focus on adults instead of children. TIA!
Glad you found the post helpful. Unfortunately I don’t know any! Sorry :(
I am currently teaching on VIPKID in Mexico and have considered moving to Bali to continue to teach there. My biggest hesitation so far has been what I have read about the available internet connection there. Were you able to find a secure connection while you working with VIPKID there? If so, do you have any suggestions on how to get a secure strong connection in Bali? Any assistance would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advanced!
I only taught in Ubud, Bali for two months and in that time I stay in one accommodation that had good internet. They had fiber optic which worked perfect for me. I had no internet issues or teacher ITs (if you want I can send you the contact for the place we stayed with). So personally, I found the internet in Bali to be good since I didn’t have any issues. Also, there is a coworking space in Bali that you can use, if all fails. To be honest I found Asia to have better internet connection then some places I have been to in Europe.
I also wrote an article on teaching with VIPKID while traveling which talks about different backup options if the Wifi sucks or doesn’t work at all.
Hi Jazzy, I teach full-time but am considering doing this part time, possibly 8 to 13 hours per week. How do they determine what pay rate you start at ( I have taught middle school for 10 years)?
Also, do you know of others with my circumstances teaching VIP part-time? Of course, in summers I can teach more hours.
Thanks for your response.
Thanks for your comment. The base pay is determine by your credentials (any teaching certificates, TEFL etc.), teaching experience, and how well you do on the interview. Almost 80% of teachers are teaching part-time especially since the positions is technically a part-time position even though you can work full time hours. Also VIPKID no longer has a required amount of classes/hours to teach each week. So it doesn’t matter how many hours you work. I know some brick and mortar teachers who only teach a few classes before school or just the weekends. It’s all up to you! Which is why VIPKID is so great! You make your own schedule. :)
Mary Lou McCarty says
I am interested in applying to VIP Kid and meet all the criteria. I do have a concern. I have a felony conviction on my record for a hit and run accident. Unfortunately it is considered a violent crime because someone was hurt (I didn’t even know I hit anyone). No drugs or alcohol or texting were involved. Do you know, or know how I can find out, if this felony conviction disqualifies me? I know you mentioned there is a background check. Thanks for the assist.
VIPKID does not disclose how they review the background checks once they come back “not clean”, as I am sure it depends on the situations and their specific criterias. What I can do is email them and asked them about your specific situation (without mentioning your name of course) and ask if that would disqualify the candidate. I should have an answer for you in a few days!
P.s. thanks for trusting this site and disclosing such personal information :)
I emailed VIPKID directly, and this was their response:
“Sorry, we can not give a yes or no answer as we have not conducted a comprehensive interview and background check process with the applicant teacher. Our background check are individualized assessment of applicants. Rather than having blank rejection in advance, we will engage in a case by case analysis of each applicant. Our principal is to evaluate whether there are criminal offenses that have a demonstrably tight nexus to the position of teaching. We will take into account at least the following three factors: (i) nature and gravity of an offense, (ii) time since the conviction, and (iii) nature of the position sought. We would encourage anyone who is interested in VIPKID to just start the application process.” – VIPKID
Hope that helps and encourages you to apply to VIPKID
Hello! Could you explain how paying your own taxes works with VIP KID? I checked out the links you listed but still didn’t quite understand. Is there a certain percentage of your income you suggest to save back to later pay for the taxes?
First I must say that you should consult a tax professional/lawyer. As everyone’s tax situation is different. Some people set aside 30% from each paycheck, while others pay the IRS quarterly. But again, it’s best to have a tax professional give you more accurate advise about your situation than following my advise.
Sorry I can’t be of more help but I rather tell people to ask a professional than give my advise and they end up paying a crap load of money of fees for not paying/doing it correctly.
Erica Horenstein says
Hi there! Thank you for such a thorough explanation of the entire process of becoming a VipKid teacher. I passed my interview/ Demo lesson and just passed my Mock 1 lesson today. I just have to do the Mock 2 lesson and hopefully hopefully hopefully I will get hired! It has been quite a process and I’ve spent a lot of time and effort researching and practicing for the lessons. It seems like such a great company to work for and from your blog it definitely sounds like it’s worth it! Here is my question. I was given the intermediate level mock lesson for my mock 2 class. Does that mean if I’m hired I would only teach intermediate level or both beginning and intermediate? I thought I read somewhere that everyone has to start teaching at the beginning level and then work up to intermediate. I’m a bit confused about this so hopefully you can help me out. Thanks again!
Congrats on making it to Mock 2. The process has changed a bit since I wrote the article (plan on updating it soon). Before, teachers who are hired would teach any level they are booked for, however now they are giving new teachers specific levels to teach based on their skills sets from the Mock classes. So the way it works now is if you pass for the intermediate levels, you will start teaching these levels in the beginning. Then after 100 taught classes, you can apply for a level certification to teach the younger students. And the same goes for passing the beginner levels. Once you have both certificates you will be able to teach any level.
I Hope this cleared it up for you Erica! If you need more clarification just let me know.
p.s. Good luck on your Mock 2 interview!
Do you have to have headphones with a microphone or would earbuds with a microphone work ok? Thanks!
Earbuds are perfectly fine as that’s what I mostly use. I find the headphones hurt my ears after teaching a few classes in a row.
Thank you so much for the informative article about teaching with VIP Kid. I have been teaching with DaDaABC for a few weeks. My goal in applying to these jobs was to be location independent so I could travel. After accepting a job with DaDa, I’m hesitant to travel and teach because it states that a wired connection and certain upload and download speeds are required and I believe they impose fines if an IT issue is on the teacher’s end. I noticed that VIP Kid seems to have similar requirements and am wondering if regular wifi in Southeast Asia and your hotspot have been sufficient anyway, or how you’ve worked around their stated requirements. I was given an invitation to do a demo class for VIP Kid so I might do so. I’m hoping one or both companies could allow me to teach while traveling SEA or elsewhere, as I fell in love with Thailand a few years ago and have wanted to leave the US since. Great blog, it’s inspiring to see someone successfully teaching English to Chinese students while traveling.
I can’t speak for DadaABC but for VIPKID, I wouldn’t take it too seriously because most people don’t have 20 Mbps. Southeast Asia wifi was more than enough and it worked fairly smoothly. I actually found many parts of SEA had better Wifi than back home. However, if you are concern about stable wifi, stay at an Airbnb rental, as you usually have direct access to the modem and you’re not sharing the wifi with others. Also with VIPKID, you are not penalized for IT issues while you are teaching the class. If the IT issues are bad and preventing you from teaching a smooth enough class, then the class would be canceled, marked as “Teacher IT” and you would not be paid for that class. So not really penalized, just not paid which makes sense since you didn’t teach the class. But of course too many “Teacher IT issues” looks bad and VIPKID may not renew your contract later on.
Hope this help Liane, and hope you do become a traveler and location independent because it’s an awesome life to live :) If you have any more questions feel free to ask.
Kimberly McDonald says
I came across your post and appreciated the information that you shared.
I have my Mock 1 interview scheduled for this Thursday, June 15, 2017. I was wondering if you were still available to do some coaching. I would love some help preparing.
Congrats on making it to your Mock 1 Interview. And yes, I am still available to do some coaching, just send me an email with your availability so we can discuss details, etc. Hope to hear from you soon :)!
I just wanted to say THANK YOU so much for creating this blog post!
I just became aware of VIPKID yesterday and it really sounds like such a dream job! I am eager to begin my interview process! Through research I was able to see it is pretty competitive to get hired so I want to be as prepared as possible! Your blog post is just what I needed to get the information needed to feel confident in the interview process! Thank you so much for taking the time to inform others about what it looks like to interview and work for this company – really such a blessing and so sweet of you to take the time!
Thank you for your kind words, and I am glad you found this article to be of good use to you! I put a lot of work into it and I am happy to hear that others find it useful. If you have any more questions about the process or would like a coach to help you get through the VIPKID process, I am more than happy to help! Just shoot me an email!
Cheers and best of luck :)
I am very excited about this and I have seen some videos and I feel I can do this. The only thing is that I finish my bachelors in early childhood education next summer. I currently Do have an associates degree with concentration early childhood education and being half way through my bachelors I have learned a lot of skills for working with young children so if they accept an associates I have all the requirement other than actual teaching experience. All I have is a one week long volunteer\shadowing experience at a preschool, mostly helped them do the crafts which does take a lot of interaction and teachable moments. I did learn about myself then that I melt with their cuteness and I naturally get extra bubbly. But I am not sure if my lack of experience will disqualify me co sidering I also have just the associates degree.
The classroom experience is a big thing for VIPKID and without it you probably won’t pass the first stage of the application process. My suggestion would be to potential wait until you get your bachelors next summer (while gaining more teaching experience- even if it’s volunteer) to apply, this way you will be a stronger candidate and your chances of getting accepted is higher. VIPKID is always hiring teachers so no need to worry about not being able to apply, after all VIPKID is looking to expand beyond China! Shhh! You didn’t hear than from me :)
So that’s my two cents, but I hope it helped!
I’ve been teaching with VIPKID for 4 months now. AWESOME summary!
Hey David! How are you liking VIPKID so far? Are you in love with it as much as I am :) !?!
Sarah Owen says
I am just getting started with VIPKID. I have my 1st teaching lesson next week. Where can I preview the lessons that students have booked me for?
Congrats on becoming a new teacher! :))) On the computer you cannot view your ppt (lesson) until 48/24 hours before your class. However, on the VIPKID app you can now view the ppts as soon as they book you. If you haven’t done so already download the app on your phone!
Cheers, and good luck on your first class! Let me know if you have any questions
I have a question for you, seeing as though you live in Southeast Asia. I live in Thailand, and I’ve been teaching with VIPKID for 4 days, now. I had a scare today, with a power outage that lasted for about 8 hours. Thankfully, I got electricity back, right before my classes started. I even tried connecting to a hotspot, but it was incredibly slow. It wouldn’t have worked. This is a common problem, in Thailand. I’m sure, seeing as how you travel around, you’ve had to deal with this? What do you do, in these instances?
For the 4 months I stayed in Thailand, I did not have to deal with a power outage as we stay in a bit more upscale place (when I say upscale I mean more than $200 a month (~400 a month) or airbnb rentals) Also, it depends on where you are, if you are on the islands, there are more likely to have power outages unlike big cities like Bangkok, Chaing Mai or even Phuket, which is where I spent most of my time while teaching VIPKID. If you are staying on an Island it’s crucial to have a good wifi hotspot device ( I have tep wireless) as back up or even a sim card.
But honestly, I only dealt with power outage once since I been with VIPKID and my hotspot worked fine to get through my classes ( a bit slow, but we made it through class).
P.s. was the power outage for the entire country? If so that’s a bit more challenging (but it might be easier to prove to VIPKID if you can’t make class- as the power outage might be on the news or online).
I’m currently living on Koh Samui… I found out that it was actually a planned power outage, for the entire area that I’m living in. Though, the way they announce their planned outages are via truck & megaphone, in Thai, haha. Thanks so much for your hotspot recommendation! I’ll have to give it a try, in case something happens. We have outages pretty frequently, so It’ll have to suffice.
Yeah, you will probably just have to learn Thai or at least train yourself to know that every time you hear/see a truck with a megaphone there just might be a power outage coming up soon. :D
And no problem with the hotspot suggestion. I bought the tep wireless instead of renting it as it’s cheaper in the long run and I only have to pay when I use it!
I hope all it all works out! Best of luck :)
I’m on my second contract with VIPKID and so happy to hear you’re traveling through Southeast Asia! I spent three years in Cambodia and I will be going back in July. I had a few questions since I will soon be a traveling teacher relocating:
1. How do you ensure your lighting is good when you’re on the road. Some other teachers recommended this ring light product, but I’m wondering what you use.
2. Even though I am at home, what takes the most time for me now is coming up with NEW rewards for my students who book me a few times a week and other regulars. I know other traveling teachers use a minimal amount but how do you keep them engaged?
I currently live in Thailand, and also travel frequently. I haven’t been teaching at VIPKID for very long at all, but I’ve found a really great solution for rewards and props. ManyCam. It’s amazing. You essentially have virtual props that pop up on your screen. I’ll leave a few links with some helpful videos.
How to use ManyCam with VIPKID:
Top reward systems:
How to create a ManyCam object
In the description of her videos, she leaves a link so you can download all of her files to use.
I hope this helps!
Thanks so much for mentioning ManyCam and the links to the videos. I’ve been looking into it and thinking about getting it. I am going to try the free trial first to see if I like it. Thanks again for the extra info, appreciate it :)
Just so you know, it’s actually not a “trial” session. You can use it, indefinitely. You can download the free version, it just has less features. That’s actually what I’ve been using
sorry for the delay on the reply, I haven’t had time to respond to my emails.
Lighting: Honestly, I have no special tools to ensure lighting, I just make sure to sit directly under the light or put a lamp next to me! When looking for a place to stay, I make sure the wifi is good and that the room has good lighting (no dark rooms with just a dim light) and also good sunlight. If you want to make sure you have good lighting you should go ahead a buy it (better to be safe than sorry), however I have found my lighting to decent enough to teach. Also going into class early to test the lighting helps a lot.
Props: As of now I have about 4 or 5 reward system (bananas, ice cream, birthday cake, body parts) but for my regulars I implement their interest as a reward. For example, I have a student who loves to type (but he types slow so it can prolong the class), so his reward: type 2 words of his choice when he does well. Another reward I have with a regular is making silly faces, or acting like a superhero (he likes superheroes). I mostly observe my regulars and “create” a reward system for them based on that, and 90% of the time it doesn’t require anything physical, just my silliness ! However, I will say I am looking into the Manycam as Evynn mentioned below to spice up my classroom. There is a chance I may implement it!
sounds like the perfect way to earn money on the road. It’s a pity I’m not Canadian or American – thanks for providing the alternatives in your comment section as well ;-)
Hopefully in the future they will open the position up to non native north Americans, but until then, be sure to check-out those alternative programs I listed above! Best of luck!
This looks incredible. I wonder if they would accept someone with masters in Psychology. I specialise with children with various learning disabilities. I teach language skills with almost all my clients. I might just have to apply and see because this sounds like so much fun!
As long as you meet the other requirements mentioned above they should definitely accept you! Are you Australian? If so, then unfortunately they won’t accept you as they are only looking for native north American speakers :( !
However, if you are American or Canadian, you should definitely apply! I can even coach you through the process to help you get accepted if you like! Just let me know Stephanie :)!
Ryan Biddulph says
This looks really cool Jazzy. It’s funny; my wife taught Chinese students online but this was before we circled the globe. She found the opportunity. Loved it. Easy peasy and rewarding too. She has a few online businesses now but cherished those days when helping kids from the other side of the globe learn English.
Thanks for sharing your wife’s experience teaching English online to Chinese students! As you know I can definitely relate to her experience! I love working with kids, and I am grateful for the opportunity to continue doing so while I am traveling!
tracy collins says
Such a pity they only accept American and Canadian teachers! I taught English abroad, have a TEFL qualification and a full teaching qualification with 20 years experience yet cannot apply because I am English!
I think it’s because they are looking for a specific accent (north American accent) for their students especially since the American culture is very popular in China. However don’t despair, there are other online English teaching companies that are similar to VIPKID that doesn’t require you to be American and Canadian, just a native English speaker or even just have good English speaking skills.
Here are a few:
Check them out, and see if any interest you! Based on my quick research they seem to have some similarities to VIPKID and offer decent pay! I’ll probably do add a write up on alternatives to VIPKID if you do not qualify later on but for now, you can start with these three. Hope this helps!
Tracy, we almost have the same profile! It is likely because there are a lot of different accents in England, and Vipkid students may be used to studying with North American material and voices, but there are a few accents in various places in Canada and America too. If you have good enunciation you should have a chance to apply I think.
This sounds awesome. I almost did something similar this a couple years ago ,but never went through with it. I’ll take a look now though. :-) Cheers
Give it a try, you never know! If you end up liking it, thank goodness you did it and if you hate it well at least you tried it and know it’s not for you!
And Dave, if you end up trying VIPKID out and want some help or tips to pass the application process, I am more than happy to help! Just let me know!
Thanks for sharing all this, Jazzy!
For the demo lesson, do we create one or is that provided through VIP kid?
Thanks for the guide of information also.
The demo lesson is provided to you. All you need to do is teach it!
Lauren Gleockler says
I signed up using your link and I am waiting for my interview/demo that’s scheduled tomorrow. I would love to stay in contact with you to help with questions and such if that’s okay. Just let me know!