Common Threads Abound
There are always new members to the VIPKID community. Almost daily, I see many of the same trending topics and conversations over and over again. I’m not mad. I just want to create an easy location to find these answers, and to encourage experienced VIPKid teachers to be patient and encouraging. Here are the top concerns I keep seeing: 1) I’m not getting bookings. How long is the average wait for bookings? 2) OMG, I’m concerned about my teaching tags because they said I’m “serious”. Am I like, boring? 3) How do you make VIPKid work with your family? My kids miss me and my hubby is getting frustrated.
The short answer to each on in the order they appeared:
- There is no definitive answer to this question. Please be aware that the norm is a few months…not a few days. It annoys me to all end to see teachers get booked right off the bat then act annoyed when they see other new teachers in their frustration. It takes TIME. You can do it though! At day 66 I was FINALLY booked fully. All those slots I left open in desperation were filled and I was exhausted. Since then, I teach 3AM to 6AM. That’s it. I could open more if I wanted and they’d get booked, but I won’t.
- The easiest way to say this is: ALL THE TAGS ARE GOOD. I repeat: ALL THE TAGS ARE GOOD. You are given those tags to make sure the right parents find you. A lot of teachers are afraid of things like “serious”, “strict”, “low-key”. All tags are things parents look for in a teacher! “Serious” is something more like professional. You can be a professional and well polished teacher and still be fun in class. “Strict” is of the similar sort, but it means that you don’t miss anything and correct errors well. As a “low-key” teacher myself, I attract calm and easy-going kids that like reading, drawing, and do not bounce off the walls. As an introvert, I LOVE this tag because I attract more introverts.
- Funny you should mention this topic to a single, stay-at-home mom. I’m devoting the rest of this blog post to this topic.
Making VIPKid Work for Me
If you are new to my blog, here’s my basic background. (otherwise, scroll to next heading)
After graduating with a BFA in Graphic Design from Angelo State University, I applied to grad school 4 times. 3 different universities, and the one I really wanted to go to twice. Come to find out, my portfolio lacks creativity. I was really not hurt by this because my portfolio consists of working designs used as logos, newspaper ads, email blasts, websites, and more. I’m not sorry that I make functional designs that aren’t off-the-wall and unrealistic for a business to use. That aside, I had a poor experience with my internship due to not having a car (nothing on the company) and wanted a long break from design talk—but I needed a job. I started as a Cashier at HEB Grocery and went from there.
3 years later, my daughter was born and I needed a way to keep income coming without resorting to daycare. At that time I made too much for any sort of government assistance and yet daycare would have been over half my paycheck—there was no logic in going that route. I took a job as a substitute teacher and continued my time at HEB on the weekend and some evenings. Long story gone shorter: I found VIPKid and left subbing and HEB behind once my VIPkid income met and surpassed my HEB income.
The Next Heading
VIPKid is hard enough when you actually are married and have older kids. My daughter was 1 when I began my VIPKid journey. I lived with my mom, but the reason I was in a bind was because my mom became so overwhelmed with having to help babysit that she abruptly quit and refused to help anymore. So, I had no sitter, no friends or other relatives who could help, and no way to afford daycare.
It makes me sick to hear wives talking of needy husbands and whiny children when the alternative is physically leaving the house to go to work. I mean, what do the think is going to happen? If they feel neglected now, what’s to come? Please, if you are a spouse or an eight-year-old-and-up child hear this: your wife or mom is making money FROM THE HOUSE. DON’T YOU SEE HOW GOOD THAT IS? It can be hard to make spouses and children understand, but the reality is either you NEED work like I do for bills and, you know, existence; or you WANT some play money for vacationing and other special things but your spouse is the main income bringer.
- If you NEED money, keep reading.
- If you WANT money, then you need to quit it with the side hustles and spend time with your family. Clearly, your husband thinks he makes enough for both of you and you’re being stingy and neglectful. (I threw that jab in there in case he’s reading. You do you.)
My Typical Schedule and Why
I work 3AM to 6AM for 6 days a week. When fully booked, that comes to 36 classes per week at $10 per class. That is, I make $8 base + $2 incentives / each class. So, I’m looking at a max of $1440 per month. Realistically, I don’t always open that many slots and I don’t always get fully booked when my students are on holiday—but for the past year, I’ve always made enough to pay all my bills. Let me be clearer: I STOP teaching by 6 then switch to writing feedback. By this time, my daughter wakes up and I give her some breakfast, park her in front of Peppa Pig, then I finish feedback. If she wakes up too early when no one is around to help, I set out toys, snacks, milk, and turn on the TV and send her to occupy herself until I’m done teaching. If someone is home, my daughter crawls into bed with my mom or sister and, hopefully, goes back to sleep.
It’s hard. It may even sound ridiculous. But the reality is this: in only 6 classes taking up 3.5 hours of my time (that’s teaching time plus feedback writing time), I make what I was making 6-8 hours per day and working 2 jobs.
In one hand is the pill that gives you long work days, a day care bill, a gas bill, and no time with your family. In the other hand is the pill that lets you work while your family sleeps and you set your own schedule and never leave the house for work…ALSO YOU CAN STAY IN YOUR PAJAMA PANTS. Which will you choose?
That’s what it looked like for me. Here I am on my 4th contract with VIPKid. My daughter is almost 3 and is trained to sleep until 5:30 or 6. She usually climbs into bed with my mom or even turns on cartoons for herself. It took some training, but she is not an issue as I teach anymore. We have the rest of the day to spend together.
How can YOU make this work?
- Define WHY you want to work for VIPKid
- Define WHAT you need
- Define WHO is involved in YOU getting to work
- Decide: is it all worth it.
Look at the answers to those questions above. If the reality of working from home REALLY won’t work, then that’s all there is to it: it won’t work. If the only thing holding you back from being a VIPKid teacher is an annoyed spouse and a whiny child, it might be time to have a heart-to-heart about your goals and dreams with your family. The truth is, it CAN work for a variety of situations.
If you have ANY questions or concerns about working for VIPKid, leave comment or find me on Facebook. A simple search for #TeacherLorri will lead you to my page (Or you can click here). I’m seriously here to help, even if you are already hired and won’t be using my referral code.
Are you ready for a rewarding career? Get stared!