Dino, the face of VIPKID, is pretty much a celebrity. And getting your hands on a plush Dino is the end goal for many teachers.
This may be a slight exaggeration. Then again, if you spend some time in Facebook groups, it seems as if people would sell their first born for a Dino.
First of all, I’m not above the Dino craze. He’s cute. He’s cuddly. I understand. Here’s what I don’t understand.
Why would you pay for one when you can get one for free??? Continue reading
There’s been some debate on whether or not to plug your feedback in a translator before submitting. For one thing, it takes time –time we’re not paid for. It’s an extra step.
Since day one, I have used Google Translate to check my feedback. And if you read the following examples, you’ll see why I urge you to do the same. Continue reading
Last Sunday morning, 7:00 am, I taught my 100th class with VIPKID.
Here’s a list of ten random things I’ve learned so far. Continue reading
Facebook groups house a wealth of knowledge. I can’t tell you how many quick answers to questions I’ve found just by searching in these groups–namely the newbie group, and that’s the one I’m focusing on here. Literally anything you have a question about, someone else has asked it too, and you’ll find out what you need.
Besides being a giant FAQ headquarters, there are ideas after ideas for backgrounds, props, reward systems, tips for particular lessons/levels, you name it. People are more than willing to share documents they’ve made of organizers, or images you can print for props or rewards.
I also love reading about others’ classes. Just a short clip of a lesson or a “hey, guess what happened to me” story. It gives such insight for those of us who haven’t taught many classes–almost a “this will be you one day” kind of feeling.
For these reasons, Facebook groups are amazing.
Some people treat Facebook as a giant vent session where they make every issue the worst possible scenario in their lives or to complain for the sake of complaining.
Hang on. I will admit, I did post about the interactive lessons for level two, and it may be considered a vent. I was merely saying how I didn’t think there was much content there. I’m referring to the chronic venters. You know exactly what I’m talking about, right?
Today marks my forty-first day as a VIPKID teacher. As of right now…
I’ve taught 6 classes and 5 students.
One of those was a trial.
Two were interactive lessons.
Two were short notice.
My stats aren’t anything to brag about, but that’s actually part of why I choose to share them with you. And why I started posting my experience in the most honest way I can. Listen, people want referrals to make money, so they often only share the pros of VIPKID. Someone who is trying to get you to sign-up isn’t going to tell you that you may not teach your first class for a month. Know what I mean?
Except for me. Yes, I’ll tell you that. You may not teach your first class for a month. You may not teach another one for a month after that.
There is a great misconception about this company. How much you make, your hours, etc. You probably have heard enticing lines like, “I can set my own hours” (true, you open the time slots you want), or “I decide when I want to work” (actually, no, you don’t. Parents do.) or “I can work when I want to” (again, no, you’ll work when a parent books you.). So I want you to know this upfront.
Sorry for the lame title–although if you’ve read any of my stuff, you’ll know lameness runs rampant around here.
As promised, here’s my Mock 1 experience and some tips from one newbie to another. Am I an expert? No. But…I was hired after Mock 1 and didn’t have to do Mock 2. So…
Settle in. There’s a lot to talk about.
You’ve passed the interview. Now it’s time to set up your Mock 1. Give yourself time. Don’t schedule it for the next day just to get it over with. Here’s the tough part. They only give you a week to do both mocks. I *think* you can request an extension, but don’t quote me on that. Don’t get cocky and assume you’ll pass Mock 1 and wait to schedule it for the last possible day. Leave time to prep for Mock 2. (They won’t give you this material until after Mock 1. I’ve never seen it, so can’t help you there!)
As far as scheduling goes, you’ll have hour blocks for the next few days and you just click one to confirm. You’ll be given the Mock 1 materials to practice.
This time you have two lessons to prep. OMG. I know, right? The first is a lot like the interview as far as the level. It’s called “Letter Xx.” The second is intermediate, called “My County, My Culture.” It’s a trip. Continue reading
Congrats! You’ve made it to the interview stage! Way to fill in that form! Huzzah!
Now comes the fun part: pretending like the adult face on the other side of your webcam is a five-year-old. (Let me just say, no problem. Going into it, this worried me, but after ten seconds, I completely forgot she wasn’t a kid. Bravo to her, I guess.)
I don’t know how often–if ever–they change what the interview lesson entails, but I had “My Feelings” which focused on happy, sad, angry, etc. After your application is accepted, you will be given access to the lesson so you can prepare. Thank God. If I had to walk into that blindly, would I have passed? Hmmm…
I practiced the crap out of those slides. I could recite them in my sleep. I’d be in the shower, like “I feel happy. I feel angry.” I’d ask my cat, “How do feel?” I’d drive to Walmart saying, “Big M! Small m!” I kind of lost my mind. But in the best way.
If you’re at this stage, let me share some tips.
Should you apply to VIPKID? Well, yeah. Obviously.
Chances are, if you’re here, you’re already planning on applying, so let me just walk you through what is undoubtedly the easiest part of the process.
Are you qualified?
- Do you have a Bachelor’s Degree–in anything?
- Do you have at least one year “teaching” experience (which includes virtually any contact with children from what I’ve gathered)?
- Did you go to school in the United States or Canada?
Then, you’re in.
First off, don’t worry. I’m not going to post after every single class. BUT this one was special because it was my first Major Course class. In other words, this kid is already part of the program, and he’s in the process of learning the lessons — he’s not someone trying this thing out for free.
More weight is put on Major Course classes. You gotta bring it.
This was not short notice (unlike last time) so I had the whole day to prep. Here’s where you can tell a newbie from a veteran. I looked over the lesson slide by slide (again and again), I made a list of the props I wanted to use, I set them all out and tried to lay them in slide order, I did a practice run. Now, a verteran would look over the slides the night before (or perhaps an hour before), gather some props, and boom, done. I can’t wait to get to that stage.
Here I am wondering how people can do six+ classes in a row, when it takes this much effort to wrap my brain around one. Man.
He got there super early! Class started at 7:30. He signed in at 7:09! So much for looking through the slides again. But I got over it because he started playing with an Iron Man figure, and I realized this kid is awesome. All is forgiven. Continue reading