As schools worldwide have gone virtual, there are more opportunities than ever before for qualified teachers to teach online. For example, many teachers now work with an international company to teach English as a Second Language (ESL) classes to kids in other countries. With so many international teaching platforms to choose from to teach English online, though, you want to make sure you select the best one.
That’s where Qkids claims to come in to help! The question is, is this site a leading online education platform and the right choice? Let’s take a closer look at this Qkids review and see if this is the right pick for your next online teaching job!
What Is Qkids?
Teaching online has become all the rage for many, and Qkids has followed suit. Qkids is a platform designed for kids ages 4 to 12 to learn English from native North American English teachers or Europeans online. The Qkids curriculum is largely game-based and developed to keep kids entertained while learning. In addition, the curriculum includes phonics, sight words, vocabulary, reading, and even science.
Is Qkids a Legit Company?
Although it may not have garnered as much attention as other popular platforms like VIPKid, Qkids is a solid option for teachers looking to teach English online.
Qkids was founded in 2014 and launched in January of 2016. They are based out of Xiamen, China, with offices in Shenzhen, Guangzhou, and Beijing. Today, the platform supports more than 1,100,000 students, 47,000 teachers, and 1,000 employees.
The company has put serious effort into developing its programs for students and teachers. The curriculum is based on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). The teachers’ educational background must include TESOL, TEFL, CELTA, or ESL certified.
In addition, students must complete placement tests before entering into a program. American educational standards like Common Core have also been incorporated into the lesson plans.
Their partners include National Geographic Learning, Sterling Talent Solutions, TESOL International Association, and Star Publishing. They currently reach students from all around the globe, including China, Japan, South Korea, France, and Turkey.
How Does Qkids Work?
Qkids has a narrative game-based curriculum. The lessons are full of games, animations, quizzes, and activities to keep kids engaged even when learning in a virtual classroom. Also, theme-based programs mimic the concept of unit studies and help kids tie together what they are learning.
Students are placed into different program levels following a placement test. They can also supplement their courses with in-app and printed materials designed to be used before and after class for practice and review.
Similar to other online teaching platforms, Qkids offers a few different ratio options for their online classes, including 4:1, 2:1, and 1:1 teaching.
What Is Required To Be an Online ESL Teacher?
Generally speaking, online teaching companies like to hire teachers who are native English speakers. However, some companies may also limit their hiring process to applicants in a certain geographical area such as North America or Europe.
Every company is different, but most platforms require a teaching certificate (like TEFL) and prefer to see teaching experience. You will also need a stable internet connection and a reliable computer operating on a recent Windows or Mac operating system with a functioning webcam and microphone.
Does Qkids Require a Degree? What Other Qualifications Do You Need?
To teach with Qkids, you must have at least a Bachelor’s degree (in any area of study), and the company does complete a background check and review the teaching certificates for all of its applicants. You must also be a native English speaker currently residing in (and legally working in) either the United States or Canada.
Qkids hiring process is very competitive, and not everyone who applies to join the Qkids talent pool will make it. We’ll cover this process step by step in the following section.
Qkids Hiring and Interviewing Process
• Step 1: Apply
First, you will fill out a quick and easy online Qkids application that includes your name, location, photo, education, teaching experience, and other qualifications. You will also be requested to submit a short introduction video with your basic information and a short teaching demo. To demonstrate your teaching skills, you can choose to teach three objects around your house or read a children’s story. This application process functions as an initial screening to weed out unqualified applicants.
• Step 2: Pass a Resume Screening
After your application, Qkids will process your information and set up your demo interviews if you qualify. You should expect to be contacted within three business days to find out if you are a match for the company.
• Step 3: Complete Video Interview
The Qkids interview process is formatted as live teaching demos. Your first demo interview will be with a trainer, who will assess your computer specs, internet connection, technology setup, personality, and ability to use the Qkids teaching platform buttons and tools.
A second demo interview (also with an employee) will dive deeper into evaluating your teaching skills and prior teaching experience. Each of these demos will take about 25-30 minutes to complete.
• Step 4: Complete Training & Supervised Trial Classes
Teachers who have made it to this step will then experience teaching a few trial classes with real Qkids students. Your trainers will evaluate your trial classes and give you feedback as necessary. You may need to complete a few more trial classes after receiving feedback to show that you can successfully implement these changes. After mastering the practice classroom, you will be paid for this training time.
• Step 5: Background & Qualification Check
This step often happens concurrently with your demos and your trial classes. Qkids will make sure that you have a valid TESOL or TEFL certification and that you have passed your background check.
• Step 6: You’re Hired!
Teachers join Qkids as independent contractors, and they have to sign a contract. At this time, you will also be able to submit your schedule availability.
• Step 7: Continuous Assessment
Contract terms are for 6-month increments and may be renewed at the end of each contract. In addition, teachers are regularly evaluated through parent feedback and assessment.
How To Pass Your Qkids Demos & Trial Classes
Passing your demo interview and trial classes can be easier than you might think. However, you can do a few things to help you stand apart from the pack and ensure that you will impress your trainers and get hired.
Utilize The Tools – During your demos and trial classes, show that you have a solid working knowledge of the Qkids platform. Trainers will want to see that you have practiced using the system, have the technical skills and equipment needed to succeed, and keep students engaged. This can be done by decorating your welcome page with stickers, using the spotlight tool throughout your lessons, and rewarding your students with diamonds.
Read The Teacher Notes – Be prepared and don’t miss any of the instructions your trainer may be expecting from you by thoroughly reviewing the teacher notes before you begin.
Use Props – One of the best ways to make a good impression in your demos and trial classes is to use props. You can buy, print, or create your props such as a pointer stick, magic wand, or emojis. Props help keep kids entertained and engaged.
Use TPR – The TPR’s unique teaching style (common with most online teaching platforms) incorporates frequent gestures and facial expressions to teach by using physical movement to reinforce verbal input. In short, you will want to be very animated and use plenty of encouraging smiles, head nods, and repetition, along with body movements and other physical cues.
Practice All Your Slides – During your demos, your interviewer may ask you to demonstrate all or just some of the slides for your lesson, and they may even skip around. Be sure that you have practiced all of the slides for your teaching demo and are prepared to run through all of them.
Incorporate Feedback – As you begin your demo, your interviewer may pause to comment on the slides or give you feedback. If you can show them that you can listen and incorporate feedback in the following slides without getting flustered or thrown off track, this will certainly earn you some easy bonus points with the trainer.
Have a Dedicated “Classroom” Space – You want to show your trainer that you can work professionally and a space from which to teach without interruptions. So whether you use a well-lit closet or a dedicated office room, decorate your space and ensure you are well-insulated from household noise and other distractions.
How Much Does Qkids Pay?
Like many other online English teaching platforms, Qkids has a base pay rate (of $8 per half-hour class) and available bonuses for performance or attendance. Qkids pay is very competitive with other similar platforms.
Qkids pays out an extra $1 per class as performance bonuses to reward positive parent feedback and $1 per class for all teachers who earn the attendance bonus. To get the attendance bonus, you must teach at least 15 classes per week, give advanced notice for any cancellations, and be consistent with your class schedule. With these incentives, educators can earn anywhere from $16/hour to $20/hour.
How To Get Paid on Qkids
Qkids teachers are paid via bank transfer (to bank accounts in the U.S. or Canada only). You will be paid around the 15th of each month for the entire previous month’s teaching, but there may occasionally be delays in pay due to Chinese national holidays.
You do not need to pay any transfer fees for your Qkids salary. A Qkids teacher is an independent contractor, so no taxes will be taken out, but you must pay your taxes when you file.
Please note: Residents of Canada will be paid in U.S. dollars
How Many Hours Can You Teach?
Because you will be teaching international students, all Qkids classes operate during the following regular class time slots:
- Summer Mornings 6:30 a.m. – 9 a.m. EST (7 days a week)
- Summer Evenings 8:30 p.m. – 11:40 p.m. EST (Friday & Saturday)
- Winter Mornings 5:30 a.m. – 8 p.m. EST (7 days a week)
- Winter Evenings 7:30 p.m. – 10:40 p.m. EST (Friday & Saturday)
Additional evening classes may sometimes be available. However, you may not get as many hours as you would like.
Is Qkids a Good Job?
Like most online platforms where teachers guide students, working for Qkids has pros and cons.
• Set Your Availability – When this online ESL company approves your application, you can set your availability within the hours that Qkids is in operation. Qkids has slightly different hours than most other ESL companies, which could be a good perk for those looking to fill in their schedule a bit more or who find the hours at other companies don’t quite work for them. However, these hours could be a con for some.
• Curriculum – The curriculum at Qkids stands apart among online English teaching platforms. When a teaching platform has a strong curriculum, it is easier for educators to jump in and begin teaching their classes each day without a ton of prep time. Teaching English online when the curriculum and teaching materials have already been provided for you is much simpler than taking the time to deal with lesson planning. Many teachers love using Qkids for this reason.
• Teacher Support – Qkids has separate support teams (including a Training Team, Class Coordination Team, and a Tech Support Team) to provide teachers with the resources and help they need to succeed. Training and feedback are provided from the beginning of the screening and hiring process. Qkids wants all its teachers to succeed and doesn’t play favorites or make teachers compete against each other for teaching spots. All teachers are booked equally through the Qkids unique patented platform.
• Positive Qkids Reviews – Qkids enjoys wide support from satisfied teachers, and many positive comments can be found online. It can be scary to branch out and try a new teaching program, so knowing this going in can give you the boost you need to apply.
• Flexible Cancellation Policy – The policy for cancellations at Qkids is one of the best in the industry. Teachers can cancel their scheduled class for any reason with no consequences (with at least 5 hours’ notice). Classes can also be canceled up to 30 minutes ahead of time, but you may forfeit your attendance bonus.
• Alternative Working Hours – Although it is not unique to Qkids and could be an issue with any teaching platform, it is worth noting that working with Qkids will likely result in some teaching during the early hours of the day. For example, if you live on the West Coast, it could mean staying up until 1 a.m. to teach, and if you live on the East Coast, it could mean waking up at 4 a.m. to get to work. However, for some people, this may be a good thing! If you are a morning person or like working late nights and want to work from home, online teaching with a company like Qkids is a great choice.
• Teaching Minimums – Qkids require a minimum commitment of 6 hours (12 classes) per week. In addition, scheduling availability changes must be submitted via email, and the company wants to see their teachers committing to a consistent schedule. If you aren’t looking to teach with a permanent schedule and can’t commit to consistent work every week or every month, Qkids may not be the right platform for you.
• Hard to Get Into – The Qkids application process is tough. So it can be very difficult to get your foot in the door. This platform prides itself on having top-tier educators for all of its students. However, those who do get approved to teach on Qkids enjoy their work for the company.
• No Raises – Unlike some other platforms, Qkids offers all teachers the same base pay rate and bonuses, without any opportunities for advancement or higher pay for more time spent working with the company. There is just one tier of pay for everyone.
How Does Qkids Compare to VIPKid and Other Teaching Companies?
VIPKid is one of the most well-known online English teaching companies, but is it the best? Not necessarily. The right platform for you may be different than the right platform for someone else.
Qkids is formatted similarly to another popular platform called Magic Ears (read our review here). You teach using their platform and curriculum with class times that the company itself books. Qkids curriculum is slightly more advanced than Magic Ears, with extra printed materials and placement testing for students. The pay rates for both platforms are similar, and both feature similar bonuses.
Compared to VIPKid, Qkids has done more to set up the curriculum and the classes for their teachers. For example, VIPKid teachers must teach off a basic slideshow model and use their external rewards. VIPKid teachers also must compete for teaching slots with other teachers by setting up a profile and hoping they get chosen by parents. Qkids (and Magic Ears) do not operate in this way, but instead, classes are booked for you by the company, making it easier to fill up all your available time slots.
However, one advantage of VIPKid is that you can work many more hours and even a full-time schedule if you would like. With both Magic Ears and Qkids, you are limited to a few hours in the morning and some weekend or evening time slots.
There are a few more things that set Qkids apart. Although you will still be teaching primarily Chinese students, Qkids hours are slightly different from most other online ESL companies due to their expanded reach into France and Turkey. Qkids requirements are also very stringent, making it slightly harder to get hired with Qkids.
One major difference between Qkids and other teaching companies is their scheduling blocks. Qkids has structured its classes into 30-minute classes with 10 minute breaks in-between. As a result, compared to most other platforms that use a 25-minute class and 5-minute break structure, you may find yourself teaching fewer classes (and earning less per hour) in the same amount of time as you could with another teaching company. But, on the other hand, many teachers like the longer break times.
It can be beneficial for online educators to contract with multiple companies to take advantage of overlapping time slots and get the most out of their schedules.
Final Thoughts: Qkids Review
Suppose you consider applying for Qkids to begin or advance your online teaching career. In that case, the Qkids platform is a great way for educators to expand their horizons across international borders. In general, Qkids is a great company to work for, and they have taken a unique approach to ensure that parents, students, and teachers are all satisfied. In addition, teaching with Qkids can be a very fun experience and a great way to earn some extra cash.
Have you ever worked for Qkids? Let us know your experience in the comments section below!