Teaching ESL online
February 8, 2017 8:16 AM   Subscribe

Yesterday someone asked a question here on mefi about building up a side freelance gig, and someone commented that teaching ESL online/through video chat was a sound and viable option. Does anyone know the best way to get started through this?

I'm a stay-at-home parent, US based, native English Speaker, about to start working on my Masters in the fall, so I'd love to explore this as a way to bring in some supplemental income for the next couple years.

I have some teaching experience, though I'm not an accredited/licensed teacher. I'm so-so on the technical savvy side of things, but I have all the basic equipment (laptop, wifi) and I love working with people, kids, and I'm pretty organized. I've worked from home before, but usually with someone/company who has been providing direction.

Does anyone know which company(ies) are worth looking into, and tips for applying, getting started, training, what to know, etc?

Though I'm a fast learner, I'd love to connect someone who could tell me a little more, and possibly walk me through the process of what to expect and how much time/energy I'll need up front to do it, and anything else that might be relevant! Thanks in advance :-)
posted by Rocket26 to Work & Money (2 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
I haven't used them but this site is very popular with language learners italki
posted by Coffeetyme at 5:30 PM on February 8, 2017 [1 favorite]

I've been doing this for 8 months. VIPkid is a solid choice - they teach Chinese elementary-age kids and have their own curriculum and set pay scale. I've also heard good things about italki which does not provide curriculum. For italki, you choose your own rate then italki takes a cut (I think 15%.)

Emphasize teaching in your resume. If you haven't taught ESL before, remember to speak sloooowly and use simple language. Being energetic, friendly, and likable is very important to a lot of ESL companies and students. The hiring process varies a lot by company but with almost all of them, the students choose their teachers so it can take a few months to build a following and a steady schedule.

Here's a huge and recently updated list
of other companies to look into too.
posted by horizons at 6:44 AM on February 9, 2017 [4 favorites]

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