Yes it’s been a few weeks since the last entry. The truth of the matter is that this teaching thing can become a bit all consuming!
The first few weeks were exciting! However, I had to switch from being a night owl to an early bird. When you write that out, it sounds like “no big deal”, however the reality of having to switch from going to bed around 2am to waking up at 4am is not an easy thing! I turned into a walking zombie for a few weeks … sadly, there were no hot guys around trying to divert me (sorry… horrible reference to TWD, which I love)
Don’t get me wrong, I am finding this deeply rewarding…but DAAANG the always being tired took it’s toll. For a couple of weeks I taught a lot both morning and night. I was almost non functional from the weird sleep schedule. Still not sure how I managed to drive or remember my own name during that time. There were moments that I would actually fall asleep standing up. Now I have figured out a schedule that works much better for me, one that actually allows me to be productive!
I left off the last time by saying how my first day didn’t happen due to the website crashing. Thousands of teachers all trying to figure out what was going on at the same time. It was chaos!!
The next day I timidly tried to sign on… “Woo Hoo” it worked ~ I got onto the site, signed into my classroom and waited for my first student to show up. When I opened up my camera there was a cute little girl wearing a headband with pink bunnies on it!! I was so excited that I started waving, and saying “Hello” over and over. She just stared at me. I asked her what her name was…… she just stared at me. Undeterred I began the class (classes are all Power Point slides that come up within the VIPKid classroom, no lesson planning on the teachers end) I would read and use the motions to have her repeat and she just stared at me. I pulled out a puppet and taught to the puppet to model what I was asking her to do, she just stared at me. I underlined words and again use the motions to have her repeat and she just stared at me. After about 5 minutes of this I began to wonder if this precious little girl could hear me. Surely there must be a reason why she isn’t responding to anything I am doing or saying. I began saying Can You Hear Me, while pointing to my ears … she just stared at me. Now I was beginning to panic… can this kid hear me… am I doing something wrong … why won’t she respond….. I took the training, I may be green, but I thought I was a pretty darn good teacher, I am using props, I am using this crazy TPR, I’m wondering if perhaps I grew a second head and she’s afraid to talk to the weird blonde two headed creature that keeps putting her hand up to her ear… I mean come on .. something has to be wrong here !!!!
Finally I hear the mom in the background say “Yes she hears you”. Oh, OK, she is just ignoring the weird, blonde, one headed creature on the computer screen in front of her. That made me feel not much better at all.
For the rest of the 25 minute class, I taught to a couple of puppets, some figures on popsicle sticks, I smiled my biggest warmest smile ever, I did everything I could think of to interact with this cute little pink bunny headband wearing 6 year old girl and you guessed it …. she just stared at me.
That was a long 25 minutes that left me feeling pretty deflated. I had prepared for weeks to become a teacher for VIPKid, I trained with their techniques, I learned how to become Mary Poppins on Crack to help these little ones learn English…. clearly I had failed.
Seeing as how it was only 8am my consolation glass of wine might not be appropriate so I dove into a cup of hot cocoa instead. After the appropriate amount of self pity time, I came to my senses about the experience. Small children do not always speak. Some are just shy and some of these kids have never seen a crazy American in person in front of them before. I did my best …. tomorrow was another day …another child and another chance to try again!
If you would like more info on becoming a VIPKid teacher, you can read about it on their website. Please feel free to use this link https://t.vipkid.com.cn/?refereeId=6786448&refersourceid=a01
I am part of an amazing FaceBook group that helps people become teachers with VIPKid. We answer questions, post lots of info, have a great file section with just about everything you would ever need to use, we host get online get togethers several times a week to demonstrate how to pass the “mocks and demos” to get hired! Here is a link for the group . VIPKid Teachers Wanted …..https://www.facebook.com/groups/VIPKIDteacherswanted/
Here is a link to my YouTube channel. There are a handful of videos about how to teach and how to set up a classroom for VIPKid…. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCt9pBlow-6nP8EXolRMBgxA?view_as=subscriber
Full disclosure, yes I do earn a ONE TIME ONLY dollar amount for people who use the above link and become teachers!