VIPkid is an online ESL program for Chinese kids ages 4-12. Lessons are taught by North American classroom/ESL teachers in one-on-one lessons that last 25 minutes each. It is crazy popular for a number of reasons:
– PAY. This is obvious if you’ve spoken to any VIPkid teacher – the pay is a living wage if you work full time (especially CZ, as they pay a US living wage). You earn $7-9 per lesson (determined in your interview, based off a demo lesson and your credentials), with up to $2 per lesson in bonuses. Those bonuses are pretty easy to get (one is for showing up on time and following policies, the other is for teaching +45 lessons a month). So, at a minimum people earn $14/hour, and at a maximum, $22.
-Pre-planned lessons/curriculum Teachers don’t have to lesson plan! Lessons are made by a dedicated curriculum team – teachers prepare in advance by reviewing the slides and the student’s history (notes left by previous teachers). It is easy to get used to the lesson format and prep time is pretty quick.
– Flexible scheduling You make your schedule two weeks in advance, opening up slots for parents to book. You can work as little or as much as you like. If you want to take time off, you schedule it in and if it’s more than 7 days send the company a note of when you’ll return, just so they know you haven’t quit and can reassure any parents who ask “Where is my favorite teacher?”
– Work from Anywhere That is, anywhere with a quiet room and an internet connection 🙂 Your working hours will change depending on your time zone, but work is possible 8am-10pm BJT (Beijing time), and peak hours are 4pm-8pm BJT.
– Growth & Referrals VIPkid is growing at a crazy fast rate – when I started on in December, there were 10,000 teachers. That has doubled and it hasn’t even been a year yet! There are rumors of them expanding in the future to markets outside of China as well, though for now it seems there is no end to the legion of Chinese kiddos willing to sit down and sing “Hello, How are you, I am fine fine fine!” with you. Because of VIPkid‘s growth ambitions, they offer generous referral bonuses to teachers who bring in new teachers – myself included. I’ll talk more about this in another post (here), because I have some thoughts I’d like to share.