Chronicles of Kyle

Humble Husband * Fond Father * Enthusiastic Educator * Lover of Life

Category: Teacher Tuesday

Is Qkids Legit?

Well, is Qkids legit? Oftentimes people are leery when others talk about ways to make money online. Rightfully so! I have been part of some of the schemes of “if you scratch my back I will scratch yours” mentality. I have been a part of network marketing programs in which I feel the only reason the person looks to help is because he/she is receiving a hidden benefit for themselves.  The more the prospect sells, the more the person in the upline reaps the benefits. So, when my wife came to me with an opportunity to teach English to Chinese children online, I knew that this offer might be different. Of all people, I knew I could fully trust my wife’s judgement. To read about my whole experience with Qkids, CLICK HERE.

Money Talks

For most people, the legitimacy of something comes down to whether a fair amount of money can be made consistently. The screen shots below are only for informational purposes, but they show my monthly incomes for every month I have been with the Qkids company. It should be noted that amounts some months are far more than others.  This is attributed to the sheer flexibility of the opportunity. I am able to choose the schedule that works best for me and work as little or as much as I like. Read more on that by CLICKING HERE.

Once a person applies and is hired, money starts going into his/her bank account 30 days later. Other opportunities rely on items sold or commissions and take months or years before things come into complete fruition financially. This is different in that you are working with Chinese children from the comforts of your own home with a ready-made presentation. Essentially, you get paid to play and have fun. See my monthly payouts below…

Is Qkids LegitIs Qkids LegitIs Qkids Legit

 

Conclusion

I have been pressured by people who did not have my best interest at heart. To be fully transparent, Qkids does have a referral program. Employees do receive referral money for helping aspiring teachers, interested in making money online from home. There are never pushy sales pitch but only a helping hand if asked. Never once have I pressured anyone to join, but the only people I share my link with are those who have reached out to me first. I believe in the company and its mission.  Plus, they pay consistently by the 15th of every month. Those are the reasons much of this blog is devoted to being a resource to people who wish to take the online ESL teaching route. To take advantage of this opportunity, feel free to APPLY HERE.

Best of luck in your money-making endeavors.

 

Qkids Teacher Evaluations

Today I want to discuss with you some of my teaching strategies, based on the criteria used for Qkids teacher evaluations. Note: These are my approaches and are not the only ways that a teacher can fulfill lesson expectations. CLICK HERE if interested in starting the path to $20 per hour from the comforts of your own home. If wondering about the hours Qkids offers, CLICK HERE to find out.

Sound Control and Quality

The first Qkids teacher evaluations criterion has to do with sound control. Volume features can be adjusted on the student’s individual screen by hovering the cursor over the student. Parents and students will pay close attention as to whether or not they are able to hear clearly. At the beginning of class, during the greetings, I say hello to all of my students and ask them simple questions. This is a great way to get to know the students personally, but at the same time, I’m indirectly checking to make sure that I can hear them properly and if they can hear me properly. Checking this at the very beginning of class ensures that the lesson will run smoothly. I also check for echoes and any other issues that may hinder the learning process. If I hear echoes, I will lower the student’s volume in hopes that it will go away and will not confuse the other students in class. As the lesson progresses, I will continue to ask students questions individually to make sure that the sound is still at a good quality. Sound is the first step to a successful lesson.

Button and Feature Options

Qkids Button Navigation

These buttons can be accessed in the top right of the screen of the teaching platform.

The next guideline for Qkids teacher evaluations is about the teacher’s proficiency with button navigation. The Qkids platform is robust and has many features to enhance the lesson.

Diamonds

Qkids Diamonds

One thing that students love is the use of diamonds during the lesson as motivation. I always make a point to give all of my students equal amounts of diamonds, so that no one feels left out. Before I give diamonds, I let the students know that that is what is coming their way. Students always seem so appreciative to receive diamonds.

Highlighter

Qkids Highlighter

Another tool that I use often is the highlighter. Simply right click and hold the button down and highlight or circle anything that you feel is important for the students to pay attention to. When you right click and hold the button down you should see a blue line that can bring attention to any part of the lesson that you wish.

Spotlight

Qkids Spotlight

In addition to the highlighter, there is the spotlight. The spotlight darkens the entire screen and allows the teacher to left click with the mouse and put a spotlight on something in particular. For example, if I want the kids to pay attention to an apple among many many other fruits and vegetables, I can use my spotlight to focus on the apple. This is another great option to complement the highlighter feature.

Marker

Qkids Marker

Another feature is the marker. You can click on it and left click your mouse to circle an object or to spell a certain word that may be part of the lesson. This feature requires that the teacher clicks to activate the marker, and when finished, the teacher clicks the X to exit the marker. Only then can other features on the platform be used. This is one thing that I wish could be fixed. I would like to use other features while using the marker, but that is not possible at this time.

Text Board

Qkids Text Box

One of my favorite features of the platform is the text board. Let’s say that a student is having difficulty putting words together to make a sentence. A teacher can use the text board to type the words and create sentences to aid the student to better understand which words to click on his/her end.

Stickers

Qkids Stickers

Another form of motivation are the many stickers that a teacher can give the student throughout the lesson and at the end of the lesson to finish up. Stickers at the beginning of the lesson are also a great icebreaker to bring humor and style to the lesson. A new teacher should familiarize himself/herself with the various stickers that students may request. Sometimes students may be difficult to understand, so it is important to have familiarity with all of the sticker options.

Productive Learning Setting

Next is a productive learning setting. There are many ways to achieve a productive learning setting. In my case, I make sure that I am familiar with the lessons before. I think about what creative ways I can present the words and sentences, so that it will be fun to the students. Oftentimes I will make sure that I have plenty of props to model in order to ensure student understanding. I also have an approach of student speak/teacher listen. By this, I mean that I allow the students to look at the words or sentences and attempt to say the words or sentences first. I then listen to the student and give the student praise or feedback as needed. If I offer feedback, I use plenty of gestures by pointing to my mouth when I say the word to prompt speaking, and then I hold my hand up to my ear for the student to repeat what I have said. In my experience, parents like this much more than when I speak first and the student repeats after me. This small tweak has increased the rigor for English language learners. Parents also like all of the speaking opportunities that it gives their children. I also find it important during the lesson to stop and compliment the student on how well he or she is doing. This comforts the student and reassures the student that I am pleased. It gives the student the confidence he/she needs to finish strong. These are my main strategies for a productive learning setting. As you can see, I use best practice strategies recommended to me by my mentor and from my own teaching experiences at my brick-and-mortar school.

I also find it important during the lesson to stop and compliment the student on how well he or she is doing. This comforts the student and reassures the student that I am pleased. It gives the student the confidence he/she needs to finish strong. These are my main strategies for a productive learning setting. As you can see, I use best practice strategies recommended to me by my mentor and from my own teaching experiences at my brick-and-mortar school.

Approachable

Parents, students, and Qkids staff also look for whether or not the teacher is approachable during the Qkids teacher evaluations. A smile and kindness go a long way to ensuring a successful lesson and student participation. If a student does not feel that the teacher is approachable, he or she will not give his or her full effort. I feel this is one of my biggest strengths because I value students and families and feel that they are both a blessing. I’m thankful for new relationships with them.

Feedback and Emphasis

Feedback and emphasis are also valued by students and parents. I always allow the student to attempt the word or sentence first and then I listen and provide feedback as needed. When the student reads a sentence, I listen to every word that the student says from the sentence. If the student leaves out a word or mispronounces a word, I kindly repeat or emphasize that part of the sentence and prompt the student to repeat after me. Parents really appreciate when teachers take the time to do this because they feel that it is a bang for their buck. Parents are paying for their child to be taught proper English and sometimes that requires feedback an emphasis when needed. Sometimes a student’s accent is heavy and it requires some corrections. This oftentimes comes in the form of repeating the sentence and emphasizing the words the student missed.

Fairness

Another part of the evaluation instrument is simply fairness. I always try to give students equal amounts of diamonds. Students have equal amounts of speaking opportunities. I call students by their first names or the names they have designated. If I give one student praise, I give all students praise. Equality is a major part of success in the online ESL classroom.

Professional Presentation

In addition to the previously mentioned Qkids teacher evaluations criteria, next comes professionalism. This takes many forms. For example, the teacher must always be professional with students and parents and how they redirect them and communicate with them. The teacher must be tactful in the messages and reports they write about the student, so that the message is understandable and applicable for the student and families to improve. There must be also a clear communication with class coordination to ensure that everyone’s needs are being met and that all issues, big or small, are documented and reported. If it crosses your mind and is a question, it is always wise to consult with your superiors to make sure they know, in case a complaint arises or the family may have questions. I try to be mindful that all families are not proficient in English, so I write as clearly and concisely as possible for them to understand. Sometimes if I have concerns that a family might not understand what I am communicating with them, I will contact class of coordination for further assistance.

Student Emotional Support

Next in the Qkids teacher evaluations is student emotional support. Some days students are very emotional and need that extra push. This can come in the form of diamonds, stickers, or simply words of encouragement that everything will be okay and that the student is doing a great job. Along with fairness, I feel that student emotional support is one of my strengths, as I can always seem to make students smile, even when they are having a bad day.

Student Participation

The next thing that students and parents look for is student participation. Are all students participating the way they should? If I have four students in a class, sometimes I will mute all but one student and give that student an opportunity to say the words and sentences. Then, I will go on to the remainder of the students to give them equal opportunities to participate. I feel this is important when you have groups because some shy students will try to blend in and not participate as much. Even during group games I like to focus on individual students to make sure that everyone is participating.

Teacher Language Use

Teacher language use is also valued by parents and students. I try my best to use simple sentences that are clear to English language learners. Speaking at a slow pace helps students to more easily follow the lesson content. I use hand gestures, pointing to my mouth, and holding my hand to my ear to prompt students.

Interaction and Communication Style

Last but not least, students and parents value a teacher’s interaction and communication style. Every teacher will be different in how he/she approaches the lesson. That is the beauty of teaching and education is that every teacher has his or her own style. My personal style is offering ample encouragement, plenty of props, and equal opportunity for speaking among all students. If a teacher does these things, it ensures a fun a successful lesson for all students. As you look through the lessons, you will discover your own way of interacting and communicating with students that fits your personality. Use video examples to get an idea, but do not think that is the only way to teach. Develop your own teaching style, based on your own personality. If you try to teach like someone you see in all the videos, it will be mentally draining and will come off as fake and not sincere to who you really are as a person and teacher.

Conclusion

In conclusion, these are all things that students and parents and those who evaluate look for when reviewing our lessons through Qkids. Granted this is a lot of information, most of it is common sense and best practices that anyone can apply. If you think this is something you might be interested in, feel free to click here to apply. CLICK HERE to apply for Qkids today!

Qkids Hours: Which Times Work Best for You?

Qkids Hours…

Potential applicants for Qkids often wonder what the hours are. One apprehension that I often hear is the classes are just too early. In this article, I plan to thoroughly discuss the Qkids hours and hopefully present times that can be beneficial for all. CLICK HERE to register for Qkids today.

Qkids Time Slots: Morning Hours

Morning Hours

It is true that not every person is a morning person. Some can’t fathom getting up at 5 AM to teach ESL classes online to Chinese students. Others enjoy the early classes, as they are able to teach and have the rest of the day ahead of them once they are finished. Note: For the times used in this article, I will be using Central Standard Time, so convert to your time zone accordingly.

Each day of the week, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday,  Teachers have the option of teaching four morning classes. Teachers’ morning class times are as follows…

Class 1–5:40-6:10

10-minute break

Class 2–6:20-6:50

10-minute break

Class 3–7:00-7:30

10-minute break

Class 4–7:40-8:10

For the 1v4 classes,  teachers are to end 2 minutes early to do a simple, short evaluation in which the teacher checks  some boxes on student performance. For 1v1 classes, teachers end 6 minutes early to do a written evaluation of the one particular student.

Qkids Time Slots: Evening Hours

Evening Hours

Many teachers would prefer the evening hours, so that they can sleep in. Evening hours offer 5 classes on nights they are offered.  During non-peak season, evening classes are offered on Friday and Saturday evenings.

Class 1–7:40-8:10

10- minute break

Class 2–8:20-8:50

10- minute break

Class 3–9:00-9:30

10- minute break

Class 4–9:40-10:10

10- minute break

Class 5–10:20-10:50

Peak Season Hours

During the peak season, that usually spans from July to August, evening classes are offered each night, along with the same morning class schedule mentioned above.

Qkids Hours Requirements

The minimum requirement to keep employment with the company is 12 classes or 6 hours. In order to obtain the $20 per hour, one must work 15 classes or 7 1/2 hours to get the bonuses needed to bump it up to the $20 per hour.

Conclusion

These minimums are super easy to obtain during summer break, if your primary job is teaching. Having said that, if you are a teacher during the school year or a person with a different job that you report to all year, then you will have to become more creative.  Hopefully by seeing Qkids hours you can get a better idea of what will work best for your own unique schedule.

CLICK HERE to register for Qkids today.

Happy Teaching!

 

Teacher Tuesday: Not By Number

This Teacher Tuesday I come to you with this–know the students by name and not by number. To read my last Teacher Tuesday CLICK HERE.

Ahh, yes! Testing week! The week when all of your efforts and hard work come to complete fruition! That is the hope anyway. How sweet it is when it all works out! Students are deemed “high-performing” or “smart” and the teacher gets high praise. In this scenario, all is just peachy in the world.

The flip side of that is tension, anxiety, and the curve ball question(s) the students nor the teacher anticipated being on the test. After the the question is read, people are left saying “What the whaaaa…?” accompanied with a cold sweat and sick stomach.

What I practiced was all in vain!

Through My Child’s Eyes

Yesterday, I picked up my daughter from school. Dori is in third grade. It is her first year experiencing state-mandated testing. She got in the vehicle and the first thing she said was…

Today was my first day of KPREP!

I asked her how it went and she was pretty positive about it. She said she was able to answer all of her questions without running out of time, but there were a few that she didn’t know. I told her that was okay and that we will never know all the answers on a test.

We had also been working SO hard on short answer. She had gotten to a point that it was like clockwork. Each night, she would come home, and we would do a short answer. Based on the scoring guide, she was scoring twos (the highest score) on most of her writings. She felt really good going into it. On the way home, I asked her how she thought she scored on the short answer.

I think I got a 0 on the first one and maybe a 1 on the second one.

Father Fail

My response could have been so much better.

You are just kidding, right? The short answer is what we have practiced all year!

At that point, Dori started bawling.

Please don’t be disappointed in me.

She was crushed by my words, and I realized that this was a “father fail” for the ages. I was just attempting to push her, but it made her feel that she had fallen short. 🙁 A true testament to the stresses of test week.

You see, I had fallen victim to focusing more on the numbers that Dori might score rather than the beautiful person she is inside and out. After an apology and further discussion about the short answer questions, I realized the rigor of the KPREP short answer questions exceeded the examples we had been practicing nightly. That is not to fault anyone, but those unexpected questions or extensions to certain questions seem to always surface every year. Couple that with students’ test anxiety, and it is the perfect storm for a whirlwind of emotions that are just simply unneeded!

I talked to Leah about it later, and she said that Dori felt good about her efforts and the fact that she did not run out of time. I should have been happy with that and should not have started talking about scores or numbers.

Cards of Encouragement

The school does this wonderful activity where for each of the four days of testing they give families four note cards. Four family members or friends write encouraging words, so that the students have something positive to read before testing each of the four days. Sometimes when Dori is unsure about something she panics and completely shuts down. She said that yesterday the one thing that kept her from giving up was her mother’s card of encouragement.

As a teacher, encouragement and love should be at the forefront of any teaching philosophy, because if that is present, then rapport with students is built and there is a direct correlation with that and student performance.

You attract for bees with honey than vinegar.

I have never been of the mindset that teaching should be drill camp. This generation of students, and even my own kids, do not respond well to it. Besides, it is just not my nature to be the “hammer down” type of teacher. Let compassion and relationships be the foundation, and more times than not, everything else will take care of itself.

Conclusion

My mother, and “Gran-Gran” to my kids, wrote on her card of encouragement something that Dori loved and something that is a mantra of mine when teaching my students…

Do your best but don’t stress!

This is an interesting read on Finland’s education system and how they take a different approach to student success CLICK HERE. I might add that this post isn’t intended to have low expectations for students or kids, but the emphasis that there is more to life than just a number.

For example, last night Dori and Holly were running through the house like wild horses. They were just being kids. Somehow Holly’s fingers were shut in the door, and she was sobbing uncontrollably. My first instinct was to scold Dori, but the look on her face told me that she felt bad enough already. Later Dori came out of the bedroom with this to give Holly…

Not By Number

Bandaid with a Bit of Neosporin.

Not By Number

Sincere Note for Little Sis.

This made me smile and also put things in such perspective for me as a father and educator. Good people with great work ethics and attitudes, who offer respect and compassion, far exceed any number. Love and appreciate people for their personality and uniqueness and not by number. If the first part is in place, all will be just fine in the world.

My Top 3 Online ESL Teaching Strategies

 

ESL Online Teaching Strategies

Today is Teacher Tuesday! Each Tuesday I share my experiences about high school English, Online ESL with Qkids, or kindergarten class through what my wife, Leah, might share with me. Today the focal point of the discussion is about  my top 3 ESL online teaching strategies that I feel are non-negotiable strategies for a successful class with English language learners.

Before we get into the strategies, I want to first discuss a special week for us teachers–Teacher Appreciation Week. It is always a humbling experience to receive kinds words, and even in some cases, gifts.  I can’t express how grateful I am to just simply converse with students on a daily basis and experience the individuality of each student. Their presence is a present enough for me.

Today, while at work, my wife, Leah, sent me a text with some SUPER SWEET pictures. I have posted them below.

Teacher Appreciation Week

My wife with her kindergarten students, releasing the butterflies after finishing the life cycle unit over butterflies.

Teacher Appreciation Week

In case you can’t make out what it says, across the top it reads “I luve Miss Leu She is Butifil”

Teacher Appreciation Week

A nice note from one of my high school students.

Folks, when I receive notes like this and see sweet pics that my wife receives, it makes my worst day much brighter. I display any notes I receive on my bulletin board as friendly reminders from time to time. This is my “why” for my career path.  Get knocked down 9 times, I am willing to get back up 10 for the kids who love us, need us, and appreciate what we do. So, on this week and every week, we appreciate our students as well.

As already stated, I want to briefly discuss, in my opinion, the three most important  ESL Strategies for teaching online.

Online ESL Teaching Strategy #1: Enthusiasm

Online ESL Teaching Enthusiasm

It is human nature to be more cooperative with those willing to offer energy, patience, smiles, and consistent encouragement. I will be the first to admit that this was a big deterrent for me when I applied for Qkids. Overly jovial personalities were very off-putting for me. That sounds surprising, I know.  Read more about my experiences by CLICKING HERE.

Your personality does not have to be over the top to be an online teacher. My suggestion with enthusiasm is to find what works for your personality.  Don’t be someone you are not.  When I first started out, I was attempting to be someone I wasn’t, based on some of the promo videos for various companies. Once I settled in after a few months, I began using more of my own personality and not so much what I saw on Youtube. You do you and the enthusiasm becomes much more sincere and is not as emotionally draining.

One way to show students enthusiasm non-verbally is through a reward system of some sort. Many online teaching platforms have a built-in reward system, while other teachers also make a second reward system of their own. This shows students gratitude and enthusiasm my rewarding them before the first enthusiastic word might ever be spoken Let that create your guide to spread enthusiasm in your own unique way.

Online ESL Teaching Strategy #2: Visual Representation

Online ESL Teaching Visual Learner

This is SO important. Many students you encounter have such limited English that they are unable to do the lesson proficiently at which point visual representation is needed. This can be accomplished in two ways and preferably a combination of both.

  1. Props–These can be minimal if the teaching platform is robust with really good visuals already. However, some props are encouraged to enhance the lesson and student’s knowledge. Many students are visual learners and an object to clarify a word can be the difference in a student learning a new word and not. Prop usage must be very intentional and have purpose for enhancing the overall learning experience. Sure, props can be used to make the lesson more entertaining, but the main use should be to help the student.
  2. Total Physical Response (TRP) are hand gestures and actions that make a word or sentence more understandable to a student. These gestures prompt students while also clarifying meanings that the student may have trouble following otherwise.

Couple these two visual representation techniques together and you have the perfect combination for student learning and teacher success. Plus, the families you encounter during lessons will be super grateful.

Online ESL Teaching Strategy #3: Student Speak/Teacher Tells

Online ESL Teaching Say/Tell

Last but not least, this is probably the most important of my top 3 online ESL teaching strategies that I have not always implemented, and because of that, I received some constructive feedback when I was first starting. My approach when I started was more of a “monkey see, monkey do” approach. I would say the word or sentence and the student would repeat after me. However, the rigor of this was very low because it is fairly easy for students to simply repeat what they hear.

One day when I logged in, one of my pieces of feedback was that the instruction was too teacher-centered. I messaged my mentor for clarification. I then made the decision that for each activity I would let the student say the word or sentence first and then I would tell/correct any mistakes or reward the student for a job well done. This flipped approach made the lessons much more student-centered and offered that level of engagement and rigor that parents wish to see with their children.

I have often heard that the student talk/teacher talk ratio should be 50:50, but with this approach I feel like it is more 60:40 or 70:30, depending on the level of student and the interactivity of the teaching platform.

Less is More

Let me also note that just because I am talking less does not mean that I am any less diligent in helping the student. It means I am a facilitator and can intervene at anytime to help, while also allowing the student to learn more  by doing.

Conclusion

Many of you may still be on the fence as to whether this is a viable way for you to make money online from home. Some read this post thinking that my top 3 online ESL teaching strategies were these earth shattering approaches and might be too difficult to follow or develop, but these are strategies that anyone can implement right away. I am here to tell you that this part-time job is not work at all.  If interested in supplementing your income feel free to apply with one of the premiere online ESL teaching companies (Qkids) by CLICKING HERE.

 

 

Online Teaching Background Ideas

Visually appealing online teaching background ideas are important to consider and an integral part of keeping students’ attention during the lessons. If a teacher were to have a white wall in the background, the learning environment would be lacking. Students might be less engaged. At the start, I had no idea how this online teaching journey would work out for me. During the interview process, I was not sure if I would even be hired. I did not want to invest a lot in my background if I could keep from it. Read on to see my before and after backgrounds. To apply for Qkids, follow the link by clicking right here.

Note: I would like to preface this post by saying that I am no expert on what an optimal online classroom background looks like. However, I will say that what I had in the beginning was good enough to receive the starter bonus that the Qkids company gives to teachers who have an attractive online classroom.

Online Teaching Background Before

Online Teaching Background Before

The supplies that I used to make up my background consisted of a very short list. A Disney alphabet picture was my focal point. It was something my mom bought for me from the thrift store–totally free. Christmas lights were used to outline the picture. These were also free. When we moved into our current house, the previous owners had left the lights in a box of Christmas decorations in the storage closet. I made a name tag using printer paper and markers. To finish off the background, I put a stuffed 3′ Minnie and Mickey Mouse on each side of the alphabet picture. I also laid some stuffed animals on the desk directly behind me and placed an easel to the side in case I needed it.

As I previously mentioned, this gave me the background bonus of $8 from Qkids which was a relief to me. This background cost a few dollars at most, and the supplies were all purchased from thrift shops. My point I want to make is that it takes next to nothing to create a background that is kid-friendly and appealing to the eye. Don’t let this part deter you from applying.

Even though my background sufficed, I felt like everything that I had put on the wall was the same color. The background seemed too washed out. I later printed off the main characters–Koby and Momo and also placed them on the wall. I just felt like my background was a hodge podge of “stuff”. After several months with the company and seeing that this was something I truly enjoyed, I invested more in an attractive background.

Online Teaching Background After

Teaching Background After

The supplies for my second background consisted of a higher price tag but still fairly cheap, nonetheless. I bought a trifold board which adds plenty of brightness to the area. Tie dye decorative duct tape was used as the border around the trifold board. I bought string lights, and they seemed to be easier to work with than the bigger and bulkier Christmas lights. I bought some sticker letters that I purchased from the craft section at Walmart. On one side of the board I put my nickname “Mr. Blue” and on the other side I spelled “Qkids”. I also took the character pictures and put them on the board as well.

Lastly, I still placed the Minnie and Mickey Mouse on each side of the board. All of these supplies ended up costing around $40 dollars give or take. I make that back during one day of teaching. I also removed the easel to reduce the cluttered look.

By placing everything on the trifold board, it created two benefits to my overall background.

  1. It makes my background portable, so that I can take it with me if I am out of town or on vacation.
  2. My background is more of a cohesive whole, and it just feels like my background has more purpose.

Final Thoughts

A teaching space and a quality background do not have to be expensive, and it does not require an entire office space. My work area is in the corner of my ustairs bedroom. I know other teachers who use laundry rooms and other small areas with limited space. Some teachers have used shower curtains and tensions rods as their background, and these work just fine. There is honestly no right or wrong as long as the space is neat and pleasing to a child’s eye. If you typically wear light colors, go with a darker backround or vice versa. Hopefully this gives you some ideas and eases your mind when thinking about what truly determines a desired online teaching background. A little imagination and creativity go a long way! Have fun! To apply for Qkids, follow the link by clicking right here.

How Much Does Qkids Pay?

“How much does Qkids pay?”

Qkids Logo

Many new Qkids applicants ask this question. Today I hope to answer that question and also expand on the details of what a Qkids teacher makes and the various ways teachers can earn with the company. There are three factors that go into Qkids pay rate. For those looking to go ahead and apply, CLICK HERE.

Qkids Base Pay

The base pay for teaching classes is 8 dollars per class. The classes last anywhere from 24-28 minutes, depending on the type of class the teacher is assigned to teach, plus the mandatory report at the very end. Teachers can teach 2 classes per hour. This equates to $16 per hour. This rate sounds much different to the 20 dollars that is often advertised on other sites. However, other aspects are factored in for additional money. Read on to find out other areas in which a teacher is paid.

Qkids Attendance Pay

A teacher is awarded for attendance. If teachers work a minimum of 15 classes per week, they are eligible for a $1 dollar bonus for each class worked. A 12-class minimum is required to hold a teaching position, but 15 classes are required to receive the attendance bonus.

Qkids Performance Pay

Teachers are rated based on a list of criteria by parents and class coordination. If a teacher is rated high, then a dollar bonus is given for each successful class. If for whatever reason a teacher is rated lower than the standard, his/her pay will exclude the dollar bonus. Potential teachers should not let this part deter them is they wish to apply. In my experience with the company, there have only been a few instances in which I have not received an attendance bonus for a class. I have used the feedback as a growth opportunity and have never taken it personally.

Base pay, attendance pay, and performance pay add up to the $10 per class and the $20 dollars per hour.

Standby Pay

Occasionally, teachers will be placed on the schedule as standby teachers. During these instances, teachers are there in case the primary teacher for the class has tech issues or becomes sick and is not able to take the class. In this case, the standby teacher fills in for the primary teachers. When a teacher’s standby is filled, he/she makes the usual $10 per class rate. If the standby teachers do not have to cover the class, they will be paid $4. Teachers must wait 3-4 minutes after the class has started to make sure they are not needed. The system will notify the teacher with a “ding” sound if they need to cover a class. In my experience, when I am on standby, 98% of the time I get a notification to cover a class.

Vacant Classes Pay

In the event that students are absent, The teacher still gets paid the full rate. A teacher must wait 10 minutes into the start of class to make sure that the student does not show up. In certain cases, I have had kids arrive at the 9-minute mark. We are still required to teach the class, but oftentimes, I let class coordination know, and they usually tell me to end at the regular time so that I am able to make my following class.

Money Earning Proof

How Does Qkids Pay You?

The final question others might ask is once you accumulate the money, how does Qkids pay you? The company pays teachers through direct deposit. One must provide a routing number, etc. While some may be leery of this, they have paid me on time for the past several months with 0 shady business. I leisurely work from the comforts of my home, and the money is deposited. Qkids’ pay schedule is usually the 10th of the month, give or take a few days. Above I have provided the payments I have received as proof. As you can see, it is a great secondary income and the easiest part-time job I have ever had.

In conclusion, I wanted to answer this question to clarify all of the various ways teachers get paid. I hope this helps those who are still thinking about applying. Qkids continues to look for new aspiring teachers. CLICK HERE to apply.

I am here to help each step of the way.

Qkids Application: My Personal Experiences

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Greetings everyone! In my last article, that can be viewed here, I discussed what I thought were the bare necessities for equipment when teaching online. Now some are probably curious about what the Qkids application process looks like. To go ahead and apply, follow this link. Today I will share with you the stages of the Qkids application process and my personal experiences.

Step 1: Background and Experience

Like all companies, the first part will be turning in your resume which I did using a free app on my phone. Any resume app will work. Put down any experience you might have with education, teaching in general, or online education (even if you were only a student). A background in education is not required but a bachelor’s degree is greatly encouraged. If not, be willing to justify why you are still a worthy candidate. Next, identify your computer specs, internet speed (2 mbps upload speed needed), and days of availability (only a rough estimate). Should you need help with any of this, feel free to comment below or email me.

Step 2: Children’s Book

Secondly, introduce yourself. Share your educational background. Explain why you feel you are a good candidate. Then you read a short children’s book, exhibiting your personality and exuberance while reading. I will post my video below not to act like I am an expert but to show you that anyone can do it. This may provide you a good laugh. 🙂 I completely left my comfort zone. Remember, the main goal is to take action. To see the book I used, you can click here. This book has enough substance to showcase your personality but short enough to squeeze in during the 2-minute video. Your video should not exceed that amount of time.

Step 3: Demo Interview #1

Let me start by saying I completely dropped the ball during this part. I was applying for two different jobs. I was not providing my full efforts to either company, as there did not seem to be enough time to prepare. During this phase, you essentially show your know-how of the teaching platform. You play the games and pretend that the person interviewing you is a student. I had not properly practiced the games, so a few times I hesitated or stumbled through. The part that I did ace was knowing how to operate each of the buttons to make the software work. That was a plus. The Qkids lady was very nice and gave me suggestions for the next phase. I feel she could have easily failed me at this point. However, she was very kind, patient, and understanding. I was on to the next step.

Step 4: Demo Interview #2

During this juncture, a different member of the Qkids’ staff interviewed me. He started asking me a few general questions about my background and why Qkids interested me. It was very conversational and laid back. I felt more at ease very quickly. The next step was more of a repeat of the first interview. I showcased my know-how of the platform. The games were much easier because I prepared much more this time. I feel this is the primary thing they look for–that you show improvement each time. The man who did my interview became my mentor for the rest of the process.

Step 5: Demo Classes

Much to my surprise, he scheduled my first two classes with students the following day of my interview. I taught two back-to-back classes. This was the first time that I made money, and it felt great! Following these lessons, my mentor gave me thorough feedback on how I could improve. We correspond through an app called WeChat. My mentor scheduled two more demo classes the following day. I applied the feedback that I had received. Again, I feel Qkids wants to see if you will follow feedback sufficiently. My mentor’s second round of feedback was minimal.

Step 6: Hired and Paid!

There is no better feeling than getting the confirmation email that you have been hired. The next step is providing bank account information, so that money can be directly deposited. At first this concerned me, but Qkids has paid me numerous times with no shady business. Here is my proof of payment below:

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In conclusion, Qkids has been a great company to work for. They are kind and understanding. There has never been a time that they have not accommodated me and my schedule. I fully recommend them to anyone I encounter who is looking to make extra money. If you feel you may want to apply, follow this link.

Happy Teaching!

Online Teaching Equipment On A Budget

Online ESL teachers must first be sure that the quality of their hardware is up to par. In my previous article entitled ESL Online Teaching with Qkids, I researched possible options for the best online teaching company. I finally decided to go with Qkids. If you think this might be a side job that interests you, follow this link to apply . This task would be easy peezy. I was of the mindset that I could apply with my computer of choice. I would interview. Then I would be signing my acceptance letter in no time, right? I was actually wrong with this type of thinking. However, with proper preparation, you are sure to succeed. Stay the course. Trust the process. Today I will discuss the bare necessities for online teaching equipment to ensure that you wow your hiring audience.

Can Your Online Audience See You?

The first misconception for me was that my audience could see me perfectly. I thought natural light from a window, overhead lights, and the dot of light from my laptop would suffice. After days of research, I quickly realized that my audience could barely see me in such a dim setting. An integral part of success for teachers and students is that they can see your gestures and enunciation of words. The company may hesitate to hire you and efforts will all be in vain due to a less-than-desired lighting set-up. I had no idea where to even begin looking for a good lighting system online teaching equipment. However, I remembered all the picture sessions I experienced as a kid in the 80s. The lighting with umbrellas always did the trick during those times. I thought, maybe, just maybe, that would do the trick for me too. Below is what I came up with:

Lighting Online Teaching Equipment

This set of two does the trick in a poorly illuminated room. I turn these on with my room lights, and it has done wonders for my lighting. The lights come with a tripod stand and three points of adjustment for just the right height and angle. The umbrellas do a great job of providing soft white light without the glare. The biggest positive for me with the lighting system is that it was good quality at a great price point for a newbie like myself. Click on the image above to view even more specs.

Teach with a Crystal Clear Online Webcam

Another aspect that I took for granted was thinking that my laptop’s webcam was providing a quality viewing experience. I had never done any online videos in the past nor did I really think that it mattered to the viewers. However, once my requirement was online teaching, my mindset quickly changed, and I could see the difference. Many times the video seemed grainy and I looked more like a blob than an online teacher. Again, I decided to take the plunge and see what viable, budget-friendly options were available. This is what I decided to go with for the money:

Camera Online Teaching Equipment

Again, I am not tech savvy, so I was wanting a camera that would not break the bank, but would fulfill the requirements to get the job done. I wanted something with great video quality and a great microphone, just in case I were to have technical difficulties with my primary microphone. This camera has never let me down in regard to this. It has HD 1080p video quality and the microphone picks up my voice while no so much of the background noise. Click on the image above to view even more specs.

Get a Headset You Won’t Regret

The factory microphone and computer speakers will work just fine, right?

Wrong!

I can use the earbuds that I got with my cellphone and just speak into the computer speaker, right?

Wrong!

During the online teaching application process, I tried to get by with both of these approaches. My online teaching equipment was not up to par. What happened was my audience was hearing a terrible echo. Imagine if you are an English language learner attempting to deal with your teacher’s echo issue? It would be frustrating to say the least. By this time, the thought that entered my mind was “OMG, I have to sink more money into this!” But then I had an epiphany…if I was going to commit to this, I needed to do it the right way. I was going to invest in myself. If I wanted this to be a legitimate extra source of income, I needed to take it seriously and hold myself accountable. I started shopping once again, and this was budget option I found:

Head Set Online Teaching Equipment

My wife ordered this headset when she applied for her online ESL job and was hired. I figured if it worked for her then it would work for me. The noise cancelling effect of this headset has been wonderful for me. There is no more background noise drowning out what the students need to hear. This product also has a control so that the volume can be adjusted or muted quickly. I have had great luck with this headset and no complaint from parents or Qkids, so that makes it a winner for me. Click on the image above to view even more specs.

You Need a Mouse in the House

When I come home from work, all we have are laptops that have touch pads. Little did I know a mouse plays an integral part in online teaching. Let me explain. Due to the interactive nature of online ESL teaching, teachers need a mouse to spell words, highlight pertinent information, and mark or circle points of emphasis or mistakes. It is SO MUCH HARDER doing that with a built-in touch pad on a laptop. Take a look at the pic below for further details.

Mouse Online Teaching Equipment

Don’t Be Short on Your USB Port

Now that I had bought all of my online teaching equipment, I had one small problem. I did not have enough USB ports on my computer to make all the equipment work. D’OH! Well I turned to my research once again to find a simple fix that has worked so well for me. I never knew they made such a thing until I found myself in this pinch. Take a look:

USB Online Teaching Equipment

Connect with Ethernet and You are Set

Anything legit and worth doing will take work. I kept telling myself this. A minor bump in the road would not deter me from taking action to gain traction. I had to have a wired connection to provide optimal internet speeds. The handy dandy wi-fi would just not work. There were too many uncertainties with using wireless connection. Qkids requires a download speed of 4Mbps and an upload speed of 2Mbps. My computer did not have a port for Ethernet. This tiny piece of online teaching equipment was so helpful in solving yet another problem for me:

Ethernet Port Online Teaching Equipment

In conclusion, I share my online teaching equipment purchases with you to provide you a bare necessities guide to the most affordable options and a fair price point. Are there better equipment options out there? Of course. Will they cost you more? Probably. I only recommend these because in the 5 months of my online teaching experience these various pieces of equipment have never let me down, and I certainly hope you can find some value here as well. If you decide you want to apply, feel free to visit this link.

ESL Online Teaching with Qkids

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As mentioned in previous posts, I am a public school teacher.  We do what we do for love of the kids and not so much for the money that we make. I had come to a point where I wanted to find a side gig–something that I could do to supplement my income.  Ebay drop shipping, Amazon FBA,  and affiliate marketing were all considerations, but each of these had too much of a learning curve and many gurus promoted these tactics as “get rich quick” opportunities, yet I had not made the first cent. I had even settled for driving a taxi during the summer months for $10 per hour, but that did not work out either.  ESL online teaching made the most sense for my career background, but I dismissed it and made excuses. Analysis paralysis deadened any initiative I had of taking action to gain traction.

Wives Know Best

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One day my wife said that she had an idea to make an extra $1000+ dollars per month. This perked my ears and peaked my curiosity. She explained to me that she was going to inquire about ESL online teaching to Chinese students. I watched her go through each part of the application process. The more I watched her, the more I believed that I could do the same. The first company hired Leah very promptly.  She made her promotional video. She waited and waited and waited for parents to book her but nothing happened. We had hit yet another roadblock.

Her Spark Became My Flame

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With vacation quickly approaching, I told Leah that I also wanted to give her idea a try. I had avoided trying before because the notion seemed too elementary for me. I teach high school English, and I didn’t know if I could bring the enthusiasm of an elementary school teacher. The only difference in my efforts would be to apply for two companies that actually do the booking for the teachers, and the teachers do not have to depend on the parents to do the booking. Magic Ears and Qkids hired me after three weeks of piddling and taking my sweet time. ESL online teaching and Qkids have many appealing factors that make it worthwhile for anyone pursuing a secondary employment.

Online Work from Home

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To begin, a second job would mean that I would be away from my wife and family.  I did not like the thoughts of that at all. The commute back home would also  get old very quickly. With ESL online teaching, it is all based from home. There is no commute to the office. When I finish for the day or night, I walk downstairs and that is it. I can work in my shorts and t-shirt or pajama pants. I can drink a cup of coffee and leisurely interact with my students. It was the ideal scenario for me.

Get Paid to Play with Online ESL

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Essentially, I facilitate interactive lessons alongside Chinese students. I live in a small rural town in Kentucky and no job offers close to what Qkids offers in regard to pay.  I teacher two classes per hour which equates to $20 per hour. The work is not labor intensive like other jobs in my town. I have access to curriculum that puts the lesson on autopilot. The saying “Do what you love and you will never have to work a day of your life” holds true to this job. It isn’t work at all and is a great supplemental income. As you can see above, I made $1200 plus dollars one month, but other months I decided to work less which leads me to my next point. 

Flexible Hours

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QKid’s hours are convenient. Morning classes start at 4:40 am CST and the last class starts at 6:40 am CST. That provides four slots and a person can turn the convenient times into class coordination about a week in advance. Teachers can also choose to Friday, Saturday, or Sunday nights. These classes start at 6:40 CST and the last class is 9:20 CST.  Teachers can choose night classes any weekday night during the summer months. Employees can take advantage of the peak summer season to gain more hours. Times also change during daylight savings time. Some may say that these hours are too early or too late, but in all reality, the hours are perfect to do before or after your regular 9-5 job.

Curriculum

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As mentioned in the introduction, when applying for ESL online teaching companies, two different ones hired me; however, the company that seemed right for me was Qkids, due to their curriculum and teaching platform. It seemed more robust and interactive for teachers and students. Games and fun activities populate the lessons and contribute to the overall fluidity and enjoyment of the content.  The program has undergone many tweaks and continues in its development. However, it is already an established curriculum with lessons ready to deliver to an eager audience.

The platform is one teacher to four students. They have also added a pilot program for one teacher to one student that comes with a written evaluation for those parents and students who desire additional engagement and attention.

Booking

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Class coordination caters to busy people’s schedules. A person simply submits availability to class coordination, and they will book the classes. Lessons are assigned to the person as soon as he/she is hired. This is different than companies like my wife’s that allow parents to choose. As a result, the students are dispersed evenly and all teachers get an equal opportunity to work.

The Kids of Qkids

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Working with international students is a blessing that I had not expected. It is enlightening to interact with different cultures and to see how they value education. The parents push the kids to strive for the best, and it is also a big motivator for me to see that type of positivity in a child’s life. As a result, Asian parents instill the universal importance of English and communication in their child’s lives daily. If only all cultures valued core content in this way. Asian culture it is truly something to marvel.

In conclusion, I would recommend ESL online teaching with Qkids to anyone looking to make an impact while also earning a great wage. Feel free to APPLY HERE if you decide this is something for you.  I would be glad to help you. Continue following this blog for other helpful articles to assist you in the process.

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