In December 2016, I quit my job as a brick and mortar teacher. We were moving states and honestly, the pressures of being a full time working mom had me walking a fine line between success and insanity. Mid-move, I stumbled upon the link for VIPKID in a facebook group for moms and something about it caught my interest.A fast week later, I had clicked on the link, signed up for information, interviewed, and been hired as an independent contractor to work as an English teacher for this Beijing based company. I had a massive fear it was all a scam, but 6 months in, I’m working 15-20 hours a week and staying home with my kiddos. Average pay is about $20 an hour, so while it does not substitute my full time salary, I have chosen to only work part time to still gave time with my family.
No Chinese knowledge is necessary, as this is a full immersion program. The program relies heavily on your use of TPR (total physical response) and the use of props. The process seems unbelievable overwhelming at first, but its just because the teaching style is unlike what us brick and mortar teachers are used to.
Key elements to keep in mind…
1. Limit incidental language– this means, VIPKID will provide you with target sentences. Use these. Don’t get carried away with long directions, just stick to the target sentences and model them in action.
For example, if you want the student to pick an answer, show them.
Say “Elephant” “Tiger.” while circling the corresponding image.
Circle tiger while saying “t-t-t-t-tiger”. This shows the students you are looking for the word with the initial sound of “t”. Then ask. “Circle the picture that starts with t-t-t”
2. Encourage the student to speak. If they don’t answer your questions, no worries….you ask, then answer, and have them repeat. It is acceptable to give the student the answer, because repetition is the key to success when learning a new language. We want to model correct pronunciation and have them practice.
3.Correct their mistakes and encourage the use of complete sentences via modeling.
T: What is this?
S: van (pronounced w-a-n)
T: This is a van
S: This is a van.
VIPKID offers multiple ideas for reward systems. Be sure to use it consistently and to provide physical praise (smiles, thumbs up, high fives). It is intimidating to speak a new language in front of strangers, reassure them that they are doing great!
Image via clipartpanda.com
I get a small compensation, if you use my link and are hired to teach, so let me know if there is anyway I can help you with the process : firstname.lastname@example.org