Hello friends, if you are here, that means you are interested in or already working for Qkids, amiright? I’m definitely still a newbie and learning the ropes a bit, but I’d like to share what I’ve learned so far and share some tips for situations that you may encounter.
I’d like to begin by saying that I have never taught online or in person before, other than educating patients during their hospital stay and at discharge. I am a nurse, but I haven’t worked as a nurse (at bedside) for almost 6 years! I found my way to research and started off as a clinical research coordinator, served as interim manager, and ended up as the Quality Assurance specialist at the research clinic which involved training others on new tasks, policy, etc…That counts as teaching experience, right? What I am trying to get at is, you have a chance at getting hired if you haven’t taught children before. It can happen! And honestly, I find that the children we meet during classes actually make us better teachers.
Anyhoo, I have not been able to work full time due to health issues, and was in search for something flexible, fun, and NOT stressful. I searched online for remote positions, and found a lot of ESL companies looking for teachers. Little tidbit about myself, I’ve always wanted to be a teacher and working for one or more ESL teaching companies seemed like a really cool way to fulfill one of my dreams. I researched most, and decided on Qkids. I read all the reviews, pros and cons, and wanted to give Qkids a shot. I met the eligibility requirements and felt that I could be a great teacher since I love kids and have two young ones of my own. So, I signed up, sent in my application and was fortunate enough to be asked to move on in the hiring process, and ultimately get hired.
I know I mentioned that I wanted a job that wasn’t stressful, but the application process, for me, was anxiety inducing, nerve wracking, and stressful, BUT worth it because now I am working for a company that I love. I encourage anyone who is interested in Qkids to “GO FOR IT AND APPLY.” The staff, coaches, fellow teachers, and children are all wonderful!
I was hired late March, and taught my first real class on April 1st. I’ve learned so many things since then and I want to share what I’ve learned. (Warning: what comes next may be super random and out of order, but my brain is crazy, and I tend to type whatever comes to mind first. Forgive me in advance. 🙂 )
What are the minimum hours you need to work for eligibility purposes? You must be able to work/commit to a minimum of 6 hours (12 shifts) a week. If you work 15 or more classes in a week, you may qualify for an attendance bonus, which is $1 more for each class.
What is the pay? $8 per class, with potential for bonuses. You can essentially receive $8-$10 per class. There are 2 bonuses, a performance bonus ($1) and attendance bonus ($1). You must be rated 4 or 5 by the parents/students to get the performance bonus, and work at least 15 shifts to qualify for the attendance bonus.
Scheduling: It has varied in the last couple of months. Some teachers are fully booked, while others, not so much. If you are concerned about scheduling, it doesn’t hurt to ask or message CCT. Sometimes schedules aren’t finalized until the end of the week. Also, I hear summer hours are coming and that means more time slots, specifically evening hours during the week, NOT just the weekend. Yah! The available time slots are as follows (keep in mind that they are 30 minute classes):
Different tags. After each class taught, parents/students are able to leave feedback for teachers. You can either receive green (good) tags or red (needs improvement) tags. I’ve received some “need improvement” tags before and it doesn’t feel good. It honestly hurt me, but I realized that you can’t please everyone and you can only do your best, and if it doesn’t meet someone’s expectations, then something must be wrong with them…haha…just kidding, everyones’ opinions differ. BUT if you see something you disagree with, as far as tags go, you can always reach out to your trainer for feedback. Sometimes coaches/trainers remove the “needs improvement” tags. So do what you feel is right for you. 🙂 One more thing… the tags do not always determine if you get the performance bonus. Sometimes you can get all green tags and NOT get the bonus (parent/student may have rated you below 4 without leaving tags) or you may get a red tag(s) and still get the bonus. It all depends on the RATING, not tags. In most instances, if there is a red tag, you probably won’t get the bonus, BUT sometimes you just might. 🙂
Standby classes: They show up as orange on your app calendar. Basically, you are scheduled in case a teacher is unable to make their class for whatever reason. If the standby class doesn’t convert (does not become a class), you will be paid $4. If it does convert, you will receive the full $8. For standbys you must be logged onto the Qkids teaching platform at least 3 minutes before class start time (00:00). You are required to stay for another 3 minutes after start time to see if the class converts as well. For example, if you have a standby class at 5am, make sure to be logged on before 4:57 am and stay until 5:03 am. To be on the safe side, I usually log in at least 5 minutes before class time and stay 4 minutes after class time,and take a screen shot of both times, just to make sure. Also, with standbys, you will know it converted if you hear a “ding” and see a pop up come with some details about the class. When you see the pop up, enter as soon as you can.
Student No Shows: If you enter a class, and no students are online, wait 10 minutes, starting from 00:00 (does not include the time you entered before the actual class start time). If at 10:01, no one appears, you are good to log off and you will be paid the full amount ($8).
TESOL/TEFL certification: For those who do not have a bachelors or higher degree in education, TESOL/TEFL certification is recommended. There is information going around, that these certifications may be required for all teachers soon. I took the IOA TESOL course, and was able to finish it in day. Even if it isn’t required, it is worth it, just because you learn all about teaching English as a second language. 🙂 I went to groupon. You can use the following link :https://www.groupon.com/deals/international-open-academy-787 or join the Qkids “newbie” group on facebook; there are teachers who are willing to share their discount codes with you.
Diamonds: The reward system for Qkids involves diamonds. So basically you are awarding students diamonds for their effort in class in addition to correct answers. It is recommended that you give out between 50-80 diamonds, (you can always give more), but you want to ensure that there is not bigger than a 5 diamond difference between students. That can be very distressing for sensitive students, which may result in a “needs improvement” tag.
Fixed students: My understanding is that the parents/students are able to request a specific teacher and be with them for all the lessons. I’ve also heard that teachers can reach out to their coaches/trainers to request to have a fixed student. I actually like the randomness, and prefer not having fixed students; however having fixed students does guarantee you classes every week. If you have or are selected to have fixed students, the class will show up as purple on your mobile app.
Requesting off: It is actually pretty easy to request off. You can do this by going on your mobile app, selecting which class you can’t make it to on the calendar, and click the “request off” button at the top. You will need to type in a reason for requesting off, and then submit. Once you click submit, the class will turn gray on your calendar. It is recommended to request off at least 5 hours before your scheduled time. If you cancel/request off less than 5 hours before your scheduled time, I would just send a quick message to CCT. Life happens, and they are super understanding. If you want to request a longer period of time off, it is recommended you email the scheduling department: email@example.com
Techinical Difficulties: If you are having technical difficulties before or during class, I recommend contacting CCT through the app for assistance. More often than not, they are able to help you. A couple things I’ve seen are being disconnected, media failure, unable to install updates, etc… A possible solution to the “unable to install/download update” issue, would be to uninstall the original/older version of the app and download the update directly from the Qkids site. (http://teacher.qkids.net/download)
Equipment check: I usually log on to the platform at least 30 minutes before class time to check the network (pings), audio and video. I do this just in case something comes up, such as mini updates. Every time an update happens, you have to restart the app. I like to give myself some extra time so that I am not rushing or inadvertently miss a class due to an update. You want to check your students’ sound and video before class starts. If you hear echoes, you can mute each student to find the culprit. If there is still an echo, or there is no video/sound coming from a student, I message CCT, and sometimes they are able to help and let you know what the problem is. Sometimes you may just need to adjust volumes or leave a student muted during class and only un-mute during games where you have to call on students individually.
Notifications for extra classes: Sometimes automated class invitations get sent to teachers. I think the process has become a little better. I remember getting notifications at the last minute (usually while I’m sleeping) so I miss them. Now, they have been coming in the night before, so that is helpful. If you miss the invite or are unavailable to teach the class you are NOT penalized.
Where to go for assistance: Another awesome thing about working for Qkids, is that you can get support from everyone; staff, coaches, and fellow teachers. In addition to messaging your coach/trainer or CCT team, you can also ask your questions in facebook groups such as “Qkids newbie group,” “House of Qkids,” and of course the official page “Qkids English.” There ARE many others as well. Just search and join. All the members are super helpful. You can always PM me @ Kim Arceo Moore on FB or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you want to use my referral code, it is: ZCGJQV
You can learn more at: https://teacher.qkids.net/faq
Hope this was helpful. 🙂 Happy teaching! If there are any mistakes in this post, please let me know or comment below with correct info. Thank you! 🙂 (also, I do not own the picture used in the feature image.)