A Guide to Qkids: Reviews, Hiring Process, and What You Can Make
What is Qkids?
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Based in China and founded all the way back in 2015, Qkids is one of the pioneers of the online teaching industry. They offer native speakers based in Canada and the US an opportunity to teach small groups of Chinese students from their laptop and home office.
Classes are taught over software that focuses on gamifying the learning process in order to encourage participation from both students and teachers.
What Are the Qkids Requirements for Teachers?
Qkids has pretty strict teaching requirements when it comes to their applicants:
As you can see, they not only require the normal stuff like being a native speaker with a degree but also relevant experience as well as being located in North America.
One of the most encouraging things about the Qkids teaching requirements is that it looks like you can really stand out if you have a TEFL and likely command a higher base pay. If you don’t’ have a certificate yet, make sure to check out our list of The Best Online TEFL Certifications.
One of the downsides is that they want you to be located in Canada or USA – while I’m not sure how they can determine your location at all times, this is something to consider if you’re planning on teaching from the road.
All potential Qkids teachers must also meet device and technical requirements to ensure your teaching setup can support online classes.
The thing that stands out here is that their required internet speed is one of the lowest I’ve seen for online teachers – most companies require at least 10mb (Gogokid requires 20mb!) and Qkids is only asking for 2mb – this is good news if you have a slower network and don’t want to pay for an upgrade.
However, are pretty adamant that you use a wired internet connection (as opposed to wireless) – if you’re only familiar with WiFi all you need is a cord like this to run from your router to computer – pretty simple!
As with other online English teaching jobs, Qkids also wants to make sure your students can see and hear you clearly. To ensure this, they require their teachers to have both a headset and quality webcam – luckily most modern computers come with a decent camera but make sure to check our list of teaching headsets for some good recommendations.
One thing I noticed is that Qkids doesn’t specify any minimum computer specs that you might need but does require a screenshot to ensure your machine is up to the task. You can check your specs by following the steps in this guide.
Qkids Salary: How Much Do They Pay?
The Qkids pay is a little on the lower end with an advertised range of $16-$20 per hour (VIPKid goes up to $22 for example).
This range is determined by your base pay per 30 minute lesson (usually $8) and the following optional bonuses:
- $1 Performance Fee for each lesson based on your review from the student.
- $1 Attendance Bonus for each lesson once a minimum of 15 lessons are taught in a week.
So, if you teach your 16th class in a week and get a good review then you could hit that $20/hr mark ($8 base + $1 review bonus + $1 bonus for teaching more than 15 classes = $10 per 30 minute class).
All teachers are paid in USD (yes, even if you’re Canadian) on the 15th of every month. Instead of using the ever popular PayPal, Qkids only offers bank transfer and they handle the fees.
A Note on Taxes
Qkids teachers are not employees when it comes to taxes, they are independent contractors. This means you are responsible for paying your own taxes and you should take this into account when calculating how much you’ll make. This is a good guide from the IRS on the subject.
Qkids Application & Interview Process: What to Expect
The Qkids application process is refreshingly simple and defined on its website:
The process is pretty easy to follow and applicants report it takes about 2 weeks from start to finish.
You start by uploading some basic docs like your resume and a brief video intro – make sure to be as charismatic as possible in your intro video as this is your first chance to impress the hiring manager!
One good thing about the Qkids application process is how thorough they are with their training. They have multiple demos, the first is to become familiar with the software and the 2nd to practice with a dedicated trainer – both of these happen before your paid trial class in an effort to better prepare you.
Assuming the trial class goes well, the last step is a background check before you can sign your contract and start booking classes.
Qkids teaching contracts are 6 months long with the opportunity to extend if you have a good evaluation.
What’s It Like Working for Qkids? What Are the Classes Like?
Qkids classes are 30 minutes long and teachers are expected to arrive 3 minutes early to ensure everything is functioning correctly. Unlike other companies who are moving towards 1-on-1 lessons, Qkids focuses on small groups and classes don’t exceed 4 students.
I personally prefer groups over single students because I think students feed off each others energy, something that isn’t possible with one person.
Also, while teachers are required to open up at least 12 class spots per week, don’t forget that those who teach more than 15 are eligible for a bonus!
About Qkids Hours & Scheduling
Qkids operates on Beijing time and teachers in the US and Canada can expect to be teaching either early or later in the day.
As you can see, morning classes are offered 7 days a week while evening classes are only available on Fridays and Saturdays.
Schedules are set weekly and teachers can view their upcoming classes every Sunday before the week starts.
About the Qkids Teacher Portal & Platform
Qkids has worked hard on their teaching platform and it’s generally well received by teachers. As mentioned earlier, there is a big emphasis on gamifying the learning process and this reinforced with the tools available to teachers to reward and interact with the students.
One aspect of the portal that gets a lot of praise is the support functionality for teachers: there are some great training videos and modules aimed at helping teachers develop their skills and be better online teachers.
Qkids Reviews: Is It for You?
Is Qkids a Scam?
I understand the hesitation around online employment but luckily Qkids is reputable and far from a scam. There are no reports of them not paying or wronging their teachers in any way.
Qkids’ Glassdoor page paints a pretty encouraging picture: 4.3 stars (out of 5) from more than 300 reviews.
The biggest complaints seem to boil down to 2 main issues:
- Low pay when starting out
- Difficulties communicating with staff due to the time difference
Unfortunately, these are often the reality for teaching online as you not only need to prove your worth at the beginning but also need to coordinate with staff across the world. I will say that I’ve heard MagicEars does a great job with their communication so there is always room for improvement.
Finally, let’s summarize some of the biggest pros and cons related to teaching for Qkids:
- Good teaching platform with a focus on games
- Good support from the teaching portal
- Easy to hit bonuses
- Low pay starting out
- Difficult to fill schedule
- Limited to living in the US or Canada
Have you taught for Qkids? Let us know what you thought in the comments!