This post will look at some of the best websites for online teaching english jobs
Let’s face it, more and more people want the freedom to work from home, or anywhere with a laptop and good internet, and in 2020, it’s never been easier. Particularly with the coronavirus spreading around the world, more people are opting to stay indoors in the safety of their homes as much as possible. But we all still need to work, and people still need and want to learn English. China is one of, if not the biggest English learning market, and most of the population of over 1.3 billion people are choosing to learn from their laptops rather than a school or centre. Meaning the job market for online teachers is at an all-time high, and it’s never been easier to work as a digital nomad.
Things to Think About
If you’re thinking about getting a job there a few things you might want to think about first. Do you speak English fluently? Do you have a Bachelor’s degree? Can you work strange hours such as late nights or (very) early mornings? Do you have stable internet access and a good microphone? Do you have the ability to make lessons or do you need pre-made materials?
All reputable companies for teaching English require their teachers to be fluent speakers of English, but not all of them require you to be from or even live in an English speaking country. Some companies also require a bachelor’s degree (of any kind) from an English speaking college or university. If you’re teaching English to learners say, in Asia, and you live in Canada or America, you’ll probably end up working hours between 7 and 10 pm and as early as 3 to 8 am depending on where you live and what the time difference is. Stable internet is of course extremely important as your students need to be able to see and hear you well, so a good mic also comes in handy. Some companies will have classes completely planned for you, and all you really have to do is present the information in an interesting and fun way, but other companies will expect you to plan your own lessons.
Kids or Adults
Something else you should think about is who you want to teach, kids or adults, or maybe it doesn’t matter to you and you can teach either or both. I taught English in China for a year, working with adults, and I really enjoyed it. Mainly because you can have real conversations with them, you don’t have to be over the top happy all the time, you’ll learn quite a bit from them too, and most importantly (for me) you don’t have to sing, dance, or deal with classroom management.
I also had many friends who taught kids in China and for the most part, loved it, but you definitely have to have the right temperament and level of patience when working with kids. If you’re teaching online, you have to think about how you’ll keep their attention and stop them from just walking away from their computer. Some kids will have their parents or an adult nearby to help keep them focused, but not always. Whereas teaching adults you still need to be personable and interesting, but you’re not fighting to keep their attention, and you know they actually want to be there learning from you. There is also a difference in pay for teaching kids vs adults, both in-person and online. Teaching kids will always pay more because you have to deal with behavioural issues and have to try harder to keep their attention. Keeping these things in mind, let’s dive in.
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EF, or Education First, (formerly English First) is the company I worked with in China. They made the top of my list simply because I knew the most about them as I also knew people who taught online with them. With EF, there are opportunities to teach either kids or adults, though most of their advertising goes into trying to find kids’ teachers as that is their biggest market. Kids are as young as three, and adults can be 18 to any age. EF has both group lessons and one on one, and the classes are pre-planned, so all you need to do is familiarize yourself with the materials and be prepared to teach it and answer questions. Lesson lengths are 25 or 45 minutes long depending on what kind of class you are teaching.
How Much Money Can I Make With Education First?
The pay for teaching adults starts at $12 USD per hour based on qualifications and experience and teaching adults starting pay is $13 USD based on qualifications and experience.
VIP Kid is advertised all over China, and teachers with this company will only teach kids in China. The age range for VIP Kid is 4 to about 12, though from my own brief experience with the company it’s mainly the younger kids. Classes are all short, only 25 minutes long, and you get to choose what hours you want to work, though again they will probably be strange hours, late at night or very early mornings. Lessons are pre-made so no true lesson planning here.
How Much Money Can I Make With VIP Kid
The website boasts paying up to $22 USD per hour, but the keywords here are “up to.” Because classes are only 25 minutes you aren’t paid hourly, you’re paid per class, and the base pay is $7 per class, but up to $12 depending on qualifications and experience. There are also other pay incentives like $1 per class if you teach more than 45 classes in a month and up to $100 for referring another teacher successfully.
VIP Kid requires its teachers to be from the US or Canada, and only those with a bachelor’s degree will be considered. To get lots of classes booked you’ll also have to have a pretty free schedule in the mornings and evenings because parents can book classes a week in advance.
DaDa is another company specifically catering to Chinese learners, and again, only kids. The age range of learners with DaDa is pre-school-aged to grade 9, and all classes are one-on-one only. Classes are all also 30 minutes long, but if the time slot isn’t filled or you’re left waiting for a student for longer than the class time, you are still paid half.
How Much Money Can I Make With DaDa
DaDa also requires teachers to have a bachelor’s degree, and some kind of English teaching certification like TEFL/TESOL. Teachers can work from anywhere in the world as long as you have a stable internet and a good microphone and headset.
iTutorGroup is a company that connects teachers to students throughout Asia. Through iTutorGroup you can teach kids or adults. Kids (Junior) are aged 5-18, and Adults are 18+, university students, working professionals or managers, or parents or retired workers. They also provide you with materials to teach so no need for lesson planning.
How Much Money Can I Make With iTutorGroup
iTutorGroup is another higher-paying company, offering $18-24 USD per hour based on qualifications and experience, and chances to earn bonuses.
iTutorGroup requires teachers to have a bachelor’s degree or higher, TESOL/TEFL certificate (or equivalent certification), or one year recognized teaching experience with a reputable school or company. You must be able to commit to 5 hours of peak time per week (evenings and mornings in North America) and have access to a computer with reliable internet.
iTalki is the world’s largest marketplace for online language teachers, and this is because it’s not just a place for English teachers. iTalki has teachers teaching in over 130 languages, though English is still one of the most in-demand languages. According to their website, they have over 5 million students with over 10,000 teachers. Through iTalki you can teach kids as young as 3, as well as adults of any age, and people from all over the world, with small classes of only one on one. iTalki has set working hours that you can choose from, from early morning (6 am) all the way to late-night (3 am).
How Much Money Can I Make With iTalki
You make your own schedule and set your own prices, with iTalki taking 15% of your earnings after a class is completed.
iTalki is the only company I listed that doesn’t require any kind of schooling or certification, though those with higher education and more experience can of course charge more for their classes. They also have no minimum required hours, so it can be as flexible as you want, making this option probably the best for anyone who is looking to work and travel at the same time, rather than someone looking for steady and set hours from home.
It’s never been easier to teach English (or other languages) from your laptop, but the market is certainly geared towards teaching kids, particularly from China. If you want to teach adults, and people from other countries, you do have to look a bit harder, but those jobs are out there. This kind of work is great for people ok with strange hours, or people just looking for a bit of extra income either while traveling or before or after another job or schooling. Most online teaching jobs still require some form of degree and/or TEFL/TESOL certification, but there are also jobs out there for people who are just personable and knowledgeable in their language.
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