Have you ever thought about teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) online?
Yeah, me neither.
When I stumbled upon this opportunity while browsing one of my (many) business facebook groups, it peaked my interest. I’m always looking out for things I could possibly do from home that could add to my income stream.
More eggs in your basket, right?
I was like, wait what? I could teach these cute little Chinese kids English in my spare time? And get paid a decent amount of money for doing it?
Yes ma’am, sign me up!
What is Qkids?
“Qkids is an interactive online teaching platform that connects English teachers to young language learners ages 5-12 with fun, user-friendly software in real time.”
You obviously won’t get rich doing this – the hours are limited due to the time difference – but depending on your availability, you can use this as a nice little side hustle! Not to mention, it’s fun!
Qkids recently did an overhaul of their teaching platform, and they’ve updated some of their policies to make the teaching experience better for everyone involved. For instance, the classes used to contain up to 6 kids per class (8 in the very early days), but now they are capped at 4. This gives time for more one on one instruction and no more rushing through lessons to make sure everyone gets a turn.
How Much Do They Pay?
OK, the magic question that most people want to know right out the gate – how much money will you make?
Each class is 30 minutes long, and you will make $8-10 per class (that’s $16-20/hour). Well, let me back up a bit. The base is actually $8 per class, but you can receive a $1 performance bonus for every class you complete. That bonus is tied to parental ratings, snd those scores are added to your account on Tuesdays so you’ll be able to see how many bonus dollars you received. If you teach 15 or more classes per week, you get an attendance bonus of another $1 for each class.
A minimum of 6 hours (12 lessons) is required per week and the attendance bonus only kicks in at 15 classes.
They pay once a month via direct deposit to your bank account – usually on or around the 15th. It goes in like clockwork, they are super reliable.
Oh, and did I mention your training and trial classes are paid – even if you aren’t hired.
Who Can Be a Qkids Teacher?
If you live in the United States or Canada, have a bachelor’s degree (or working towards it), and have some experience in a teaching environment with young kids (think daycare, school, tutoring, homeschool, etc), you’re welcome to apply! The first step is to make sure your system meets the required specs (they are overseas, so you need to have decent stuff). After that, the interview process begins!
What’s the teaching platform like?
Like I said, they just re-did their teaching platform. Truth be told, I didn’t use the platform before the overhaul – they were on a hiring freeze during the rollout and I was hired when it was finished. But, what I can say of the platform that I have used…it’s super simple to use, and considering that you are basically Skyping to China, the connection is amazingly great!.
You will have from 1 to 4 kids per class, and as you can see from the image above, you can see all of the students in your bottom row. The kids can’t see each other though unless you put them on the “stage”, which is one of the image spots on the lesson screen.
Each class has 11 to 12 parts which consist of games, animation, a short quiz and a rewards page. My first few classes, I was getting super prepared (and nervous), but now I just check the lesson 30 minutes before the class starts. After the first 1 or 2 weeks, the lesson slides become familiar and you won’t need much study time.
At the end of class, the students get to see how many diamonds they earned and they get to choose stickers or masks to celebrate!
My Overall Thoughts on the Position
I wasn’t too sure this would be something that I would enjoy, and I kept seeing the reviews and opinions the employees had of the company and the children and to be honest, I thought – they are all blowing smoke up my a** and it can’t be that cool.
I will be the first to admit…I was wrong!
Depending on your location (east coast vs. west coast), the hours could prove to be brutal. China is 12 hours ahead of the east coast, so their 6:40pm class is actually 6:40am for us (3:40am on the west!). The weekends do have night shifts and in the summer they will open up night shifts during the week – that will give west coasters more opportunities for classes at a more normal time.
The bright light here is the kids. I know it sounds cheesy and generic to say so, but these kids are amazing! Many of them already know a good bit of English, so having short bursts of conversation with them is so rewarding and they are eager to learn.
The staff and support team are also so easy to work with, helpful and super friendly. The scheduling is flexible – as long as you submit your availability or upcoming changes by Wednesday of the prior week, you are golden. Schedules come out on Sunday (Beijing time). AND if you have an emergency and can’t do a class, just give them 24 hrs notice! If you give them no notice or less than 24 hours, they mark you absent for that class, and if you are trying for that 15 class attendance bonus, that would definitely put a wrench in your plan.
Lastly, unlike some other companies I know, your schedule is filled and you begin teaching right away. Parents don’t choose the teachers, so don’t worry about not being picked based on your looks or how many classes you’ve already taught. Not an issue.
Do You Want to Apply? They Love Referrals!
OK, so if this all sounds good to you and it seems like something you can handle, I urge you to give it a shot! I’ll do a few more blog posts outlining the process, but you can apply here (view FAQs here) and enter my referral code UYVIFW on the application page or send your resume and that code to email@example.com. Depending on the number of applicants and your availability to do the interviews, you could have final decisions within 1 to 3 weeks!
Got any questions? Shoot me an email – I’m happy to answer the questions I can (or find out the ones I don’t know)!