First of all, what is VIPKID?
VIPKID is an online teaching service that connects Chinese students (China) to North American teachers (USA/Canada). Teachers are paid between $7 and $9, per class (25 minutes long). On top of that, bonuses can be earned for short notice bookings, being on time, converting a trial student into a regular student, etc. One can earn from $16 – $22 an hour, depending on your base rate. Teaching hours can be from 12 AM to 8:30 AM and 8:00 PM to 11:30 PM (EST) but the peak hours are from 5:00 AM to 8:30 AM (EST) during weekdays. On weekends, there are more available hours. There are no minimum hours to work so you can freely choose how many hours you want to teach per day.
First, what are the requirements to join VIPKID?
- A Bachelor’s degree.
- Experience with children. Whether you are a school teacher or not but if you enjoy children and have experience in dealing with them you may be accepted to apply.
- A North American (neutral) accent.
- ESL, TESOL, TEFL certifications are not required but a higher pay can be negotiated during the live interview process if you are certified.
- A computer. Have a reliable internet speed, proper lighting, and good sound.
Steps to Becoming a VIPKID Teacher
Going through the application process is quite rigorous BUT it is all worth it once you get hired. I am writing this post to outline the steps to becoming a VIPKID teacher:
- Application: Apply online here.
- Interview/Demo: You will receive an invitation to sign up for an interview and demo. You can either record or schedule your interview/demo. I chose to record it myself because as an introvert I can perform better that way. 😉 The interview process is quite a challenge but just be yourself and enjoy the experience. When doing the demo, make sure to do a lot of TPR (Total Physical Response) and manage your time well. I jumped into all these without doing a good research so I did not know a lot of things. Take some time to watch Youtube videos to know what TPR means and how to do it well. After this step, you will receive an invitation to do Mock 1.
- MOCK 1: This is where I really think one needs to practice on. Just follow through the email instructions they send you, watch videos and learn from other teachers, be who you are and stay focused. Mock 1 is a teaching presentation that you have to do within 25 minutes, in front of an online mentor. It will take about an hour to complete. VIPKID has a lot of resources for you, so take advantage of those things and learn as much as you can. After this step, you will receive an email letting you know whether you pass Mock 1 and get hired immediately or be instructed to do Mock 2/KickOut Session. My email said that I passed Mock 1 but it also asked me to do the Kickout Session.
- MOCK 2 or KICKOUT SESSION: MOCK 2 is your final chance before the hiring process. Again, the slides are provided for you. Just like Mock 1, it is a 25 minute presentation that includes feedback from an online mentor. After a day or two, you will receive an email about your results. *Some people who passed Mock 2 were also asked to do the kickout session. KICKOUT SESSION is a trial process VIPKID gives to new teachers. If you choose this option, you can start teaching BUT you have to teach 5 trial classes before you can teach master classes (regular classes). *A lot of new teachers in late 2017 had chosen to do the kickout session since you will be hired already. However, due to the influx of new teachers and holidays, a number of teachers had not received a lot of booking or could not finish doing their 5 trials. I chose to do the Kickout Session and enjoyed doing the 5 trial classes because it gave me an ample time to get used to teaching online and the VIPKID curriculum. It takes patience to wait for bookings, so don’t feel so bad if it starts slow for you.
- YOU ARE HIRED: So you receive the welcome email, now what? You will be asked to send in your requirements (proof of degrees, diploma or college transcript of records, 3 photos, a 15 second intro video, etc). You can only proceed and start teaching once all the requirements have been sent.
As I already mentioned, mock classes can be daunting for some people. I was not very prepared with my mock since I was doing it around the holidays. For me, the key to passing the mock class is to be prepared and to feel prepared. What are the things you need to be prepared?
How to Pass Mock Class:
- Have a reliable internet speed, proper lighting, and good sound.
- Know TPR and perfect it. Use facial expressions. Practice in front of the mirror if you have to.
- Encourage the student to speak. Be expressive and keep smiling.
- Watch out for your time. You are given 25 minutes to finish your lesson. Practice, practice, practice!
- Enjoy it!
The VIPKID Curriculum
VIPKID has each lesson ready so teachers don’t have to spend time making lesson plans. The classes for younger children have gone interactive and a lot of cool features are added to the teaching platform. In my personal opinion and experience, VIPKID is a wonderful company that cares about their teachers. They offer good support and they are a fast-growing company.
My goal as a hired teacher is to give the best I can in every class and to always teach and treat each child as though they are my own. I look at this opportunity as a blessing to my students and to my family. I wake up each day with a grateful heart and a positive outlook, knowing that I am doing what I love to do (and get paid for it) and at the same time not miss a day taking care of my family.
What are your goals? If you have questions regarding the application process or just general questions about VIPKID, send me a message or a comment and I will reply as soon as I can.