VIPKID Vibes: After 400 classes, this is what I’ve learned…

This morning, I taught my 413th class with VIPKID. It’s hard to believe. Here are ten things I’ve learned along the way.

Some classes last 7 minutes. Some last about 70.

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I have a few students who I just love. I look forward to seeing them, and class is a blast. Or I meet a new student who is just all around awesome. Maybe they want to talk to you about their day. Maybe they want to show you something they made. These are the seven minute classes. Then, there are classes that feel never-ending. This could be for one of several reasons: the kid is misbehaving, the kid is mute, the lesson is super boring/difficult, the kid is super slow and you have another class to get to. Point being, rarely does a class actually feel like 25 minutes. (27-29 if you’re me. I can NEVER finish at 25.)

Completely opposite reactions to the same reward is totally normal.

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I love doing rewards! Some teacher don’t like them, or they don’t even bother with them. But I must say, I love matching rewards to the student’s interests–once you find out what they like–or matching to the lesson topic. I like creating rewards too. As it turns out, sometimes I am much more excited about the reward than the student. There are some students who just do not smile. They show no emotion despite the reward, whatever it may be. And that’s OK. Because the next kid you show that reward to is going to love it. I’m always curious to see the reactions. You never know what to expect.

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VIPKID Vibes: Dino Has Arrived!

Hello VIPKID teachers and potential VIPKID teachers!

Last week was all about Dino: VIPKID Vibes: So…You Want a Dino. He’s back for this week as well. Here is the Dino update, as promised:

I ordered Dino on the 1st and he arrived in MD on the 15th! I didn’t think I’d see him until next month. As you can see, he fits right in with the crew.

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And he’s already been a hit in class with one Level 2 student in particular!

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VIPKID Vibes: So…You Want a Dino

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.

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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

VIPKID Vibes: Reasons Why You Should Translate Your Feedback

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.

But.

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

VIPKID Vibes: 20 Thoughts Every VIPKID Teacher Has

  1. Why did my kiddo cancel? Did he see a clip of me teaching and change his mind?Related image

  2. When I go on vacation, will my kiddos find a teacher they like better?Related image

  3. I’m never going to finish this lesson on time.Image result for the office jim gif

  4. I’m never going to make it to twenty-five minutes with this lesson.Related image

  5. Where did he go? We still have five minutes. Come back, kiddo!Image result for the office creed gif

  6. Why didn’t my favorite kiddo book me this week? Related image

  7. Why am I teaching math?! I didn’t sign up for this.Related image

  8. These are the worst sentences ever written. “I lob the cob.” Seriously?Related image

  9. Your name is what?Image result for the office michael gif

  10. The fireman may be coming, but there won’t be a problem by the time that happens. Because class will be over.Image result for the office michael gif

  11. That sounds nothing like what I just said.Image result for the office jan gif

  12. I have no idea what you just said.Related image

  13. So, is the kid taking this class or is Dad?Related image

  14. So, am I teaching this class or is Dad?Related image

  15. I must think of a better response than “Very cool.”Related image

  16. No one puts butter on their nose for their birthday. Why are we teaching them this?Image result for the office kevin gif

  17. No one uses a mouse. They all have iPads. Why are we teaching them this? “I can click.” No, you can’t. You can touch.Image result for the office michael gif

  18. I’m losing sleep for this? And you can’t show up on time? Come on.Related image

  19. Is this worth losing sleep for. Absolutely.Image result for the office michael gif

  20. This job is real, right?Image result for the office dwight gif


    Thanks for spending some time here. Happy teaching!

VIPKID Vibes: Treading Lightly in Facebook Groups (Plus a Day 48 Update!)

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.

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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.

However.

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.

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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?

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VIPKID Vibes: Where are the Kiddos? Day 41 Check-in

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.

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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.Related image

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VIPKID Vibes: How to Rock Your Mock

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.

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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

VIPKID Vibes: The Interview

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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…

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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.

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