The Experience of Teaching ESL Online

As an educator, it is easy to get caught up in what is expected of you on the road to teaching. As you graduate, you have a vision of how your career will develop. First the job search, then the interview and now your first year of teaching! Then you develop relationships within your dream school and live happily ever after. Unfortunately, the reality of working in education can fall short. The job hunt runs long, family responsibilities keep you from your classroom or worse yet you may burn out and need a change in scenery. Sometimes the political climate of working in a school keeps you from doing what you love most: teaching!

While I have been on my job search for my desired full time elementary teaching job, I found an alternative opportunity that may interest those of you who enjoy working with children and earning extra income to boot. VIPKID, a fast growing Chinese education company, is calling out to North Americans (Canadians welcome!) with a college degree and some experience working with children. VIPKID is a leader in a growing pack of online education platforms promising college educated North Americans to the children of China’s growing middle class. Teachers are able to set their own schedule and with a tempting starting salary between $14 – $22 per hour, many teachers are answering the call.

I personally began the interview process with VIPKID in early May as the upcoming summer loomed and the prospect of 4 months with no paycheck started to look like a real possibility. As I researched, I looked at this as a simple part time job to pay the bills and fill my time. I’d get to work from home, use my office, and I’d be doing work I enjoyed rather than working in some sort of customer service gig like I had done all through college! VIPKID offers all of the lesson curriculum, a website platform where you and the student meet, and a vast infrastructure developed to meet any IT needs or assistance from the Education department in China.

I expected an easy paycheck and getting to work in my sweatpants! What I did not expect was the connection and joy I would feel working with these kids. When my student and I are sitting across from each other, our webcams and microphones ready, the vast distance and 14 hour time difference disappears. We read, spell, draw, sing, and even high-five as if we were in the same room. What started as a paycheck became the best part time job I could have ever hoped for. I found a community of like minded educators and a number of students who I think the world of. It is worth the early hours knowing I get to go to China and teach every day.

If you are a North American college graduate interested in part time work and full time fun, apply to VIPKID today!

Guest contribution provided by Taylor Miller


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