How has VIPKID changed? (3 year Anniversary Edition)
Let's all take a moment to step back in time. 3 years ago to be exact. I was just starting out at VIPKID. Ahhh it was a simpler time then, there were only a few thousand teachers and schedules were easily fully booked. If you have been with VIPKID for awhile lets reminisce about the good old days and if you are new come along for the ride and see how far we have come!
Below is a recap of the changes I’ve seen over 3 years. Leave a comment below with any more memories you have of "back in the day"!
C COURSE CURRICULUM: Courses used to be labeled as C before the MC curriculum came out. Lets just say that the C course curriculum left a lot to be desired.
NO INTERACTIVE PLATFORM: Beyond the lack luster curriculum in the C course lessons there was no interactive platform. You could use the pen to draw on the slides but that was it. No clicking on animations or audio clips and songs. You had to actually sing the songs yourself and learn the tunes before hand.
ASSESSMENTS WERE A PAIN: There were no built in assessment forms to conveniently fill out during class. You had to download the assessment form and then upload it afterwards. It took forever to complete assessments, time that you weren't compensated for.
SKYPE YOUR WAY TO A FULL SCHEDULE: Skype messages were the way to grab classes back in the day before short notice options and substitute programs. It was amazingly easy to get a full schedule by just hanging out at your desk with Skype open. There were tons of Skype groups out there and home office would announce a class that needed filled, first one to say they could do it got it added to their schedule.
TEACHER EVALUATIONS: Teachers were evaluated after being hired. After your classes were reviewed you would receive the results by email. You needed above a certain score to "pass".
CERTIFICATIONS FOR ALL: There was no Pre-VIP or Advanced Levels, no special supplementary classes either back in the day. When you were hired you were able to teach all the levels offered and trials. There was no need for separate demos and quizzes to teach a level back then.
ODD PROMOTIONAL TRIALS: If you have been here long enough you have had the joy of teaching one of the odder trial classes that have been around like "The Story of Milk" or "Little Translator". These were promotional trial lessons parents had special codes for that they could redeem. For example "The Story of Milk" was literally a code off of a milk carton. The thing about these lessons is they were not leveled. So any student could end up in these classes. Try teaching a 4 year old with zero English about a machine or waitress.....good times.
APPLE RATINGS: Back in the day we did not have any access to our own apple ratings from parents. They existed somewhere out there in the world and other parents could see them and book us (or not book us) off what was said, but we had no idea what was in those mysterious apples.
AMAZING INCENTIVES!!!!!: You could easily make several hundred dollars in additional incentives each month. The incentives were often just given for opening more classes.
NO RESOURCES: We were flying blind back in the day at VIPKID. There was no library of resources available, no workshops or trainings, and no Facebook groups. Videos on YouTube were non-existent. We had to rely on our own ideas and extincts to get the job and then learn on the go as the students started pouring in.
BASIC PLATFORM: The platform for VIPKID has certainly changed a lot over the last 3 years. There was no app back then and no ability to switch lines to alleviate IT issues. When things went wonky there was a list of backdoor websites based on where you were living that you could try and access to get into the classroom if you were lucky.
PAID FOR TEACHING SUPPLIES: There used to be a $55 reimbursement fee given to new teachers to cover your props and orange shirt needed for the job.
MANDATORY UNIFORM: A orange shirt used to be required to teach at VIPKID! Wearing anything else was a no-no and could get you in trouble.
REQUIRED HOURS: There used to be a 15 class requirement a week here at VIPKID, which meant you needed to open 7.5 hours of slots each week.
TEACHER INSTRUCTIONS: Students could read the teacher instructions/answers on the bottom of the slides, once students had enough English ability they quickly caught on to this fact and would just read the answers right from the teacher instructions. Those kids are smart....VIPKID was not, lol.
MANUAL LOADING OF LESSON: Teachers had to manually load the lesson each class, trial classes were particularly problematic because of all the choices and the fact that they were never listed in order. You had to search around for the correct lesson and then if the student wasn't placed correctly you would frantically search to find the right lesson.
NO HUTONG: There was no Hutong, we only had freshdesk which was our internal message board. You could submit tickets, read weekly updates, and post messages and questions on the board for others to see and reply to.
BACHELORS NOT REQUIRED: Not everyone had a Bachelors, if you had an Associates degree in education that was accepted.
KYLE AND KATE: True Veterans know that Meg and Mike are just aliens who took over Kyle and Kate's bodies. RIP Kyle and Kate.
SICK? TOO BAD: Medium and soft cancellations did not exist. There was no official policy for getting cancellations excused in cases of emergency. Your only hope was to fall at the mercy of the random ticket answerers feet and hope for the best.
Well there you have it, from the VIPKID vault, three years of growth and changes. Certainly some improvements have been made, but also some things I really miss. Bring back the BIG bonuses please.....no more of these tokens. LOL.