A Young Girl In A Magic Ears Classroom.

Is Magic Ears Legit? 2021 Update

A lot of curiosity has been growing around the online ESL company Magic Ears. Is this a good opportunity for those looking to work remotely? Is Magic Ears a legit platform?

In this post, I’m going to answer all of those questions for you so that you can make a well-informed decision on whether or not this is an opportunity worth pursuing.

Table of Contents

What Is Magic Ears?
Is Magic Ears Legit?
Working For Magic Ears: The Details
Is It A Good Company To Work For?
Is Magic Ears Better Than VIPKID?
Do You Actually Get Classes?
Do You Actually Get Paid?
What Do I Need In Order To Teach With Magic Ears?
The Wrap Up: Is Magic Ears Legit?

What Is Magic Ears?

Let’s start with the most common question I am asked by aspiring online ESL teachers: what is Magic Ears?

A Girl Teaching English Online - Is Magic Ears Legit?

Magic Ears is an online English teaching platform that aims to provide students in China with high-quality English lessons from native speakers. As of 2021, Magic Ears is one of the top online ESL companies with hundreds of thousands of active students.

Is Magic Ears Legit?

Another question that often floats around the internet is, “is Magic Ears legit?” And it’s likely that people ask this question because it seems like an opportunity that is “too good to be true”.

But the truth is, Magic Ears is as legitimate as it gets. They employ real teachers to educate young children in China.

Is Magic Ears An MLM?

Others confuse Magic Ears and other online ESL companies with MLM schemes, but that is also incorrect information.

Magic Ears outsources a lot of their job recruiting to current teachers. Those current teachers are expected to help the applicant through the hiring process and give them advice on how to become a successful teacher with Magic Ears.

If a teacher completes the application process and begins teaching classes, the referring teacher receives a small, one-time incentive for helping them through the hiring process.

Personally, I think this is a genius idea because current teachers know the platform and how to succeed more than anyone else.

Do I Have To Recruit Teachers?

The bottom line, teaching comes first and foremost. You are NOT expected to recruit new teachers; Magic Ears just wants you to teach classes. And if you feel inclined, you can help a friend through the hiring process.

Working For Magic Ears

Now that you know a bit more about Magic Ears’ mission and that they are in fact ‘legit’, let’s get into the important details of teaching for them, shall we?

Magic Ears is unlike other online ESL companies in many ways, so be sure to go through all of the information below:

Is It A Good Company To Work For?

Overall, Magic Ears has really changed for the better over the years. Not only do they have incredibly supportive staff, but they are one of the only companies that still offers high hourly pay.

Magic Ears is also an awesome company to work for because their classes are really easy. With little to no prep work, you can easily separate work-life from home-life.

Balance is key when it comes to teaching English online and Magic Ears delivers that for their teachers.

Is Magic Ears Better Than VIPKID?

Magic Ears and VIPKID regularly battle for the top spot in the online ESL world, so who takes the crown?

Well, here are a few things that I think are important to know when making that decision:

Pay

✅ Magic Ears

Over the past year, VIPKID has significantly decreased pay for new and veteran teachers.

With a new incentive system rolled out, new VIPKID teachers are only able to make $7 base pay (per 25 minute class). In addition, they did away with the old incentive program that paid $1 for every class you show up to and $1 for every class you teach (as long as you teach 45 classes per month or more).

A Young Chinese Student Waiting For An Online English Class

Instead, teachers are expected to work more in order to earn more. The more classes you teach, the more money you’ll make.

Those who teach with VIPKID as a side job are now falling victim to lower pay.

Magic Ears continues to keep their original pay scale system and teachers love it. New teachers have the potential to earn between $7.50 an hour and $10 an hour depending on qualifications.

In addition, you’ll receive up to $4 extra per hour: $1 per class (25 minutes) for showing up on time and $1 per class if you open 60 classes or more per month. You don’t need to have all of those 60 classes filled in order to get the bonus, which is another perk.

Overall, Magic Ears definitely wins when it comes to pay.

Raises

✅ Magic Ears

Another important factor in deciding which company is better between Magic Ears and VIPKID is the topic of raises.

Unfortunately, VIPKID no longer awards raises to any teachers. Simply put, you’ll be earning $7 as a base pay for the entire time you teach with VIPKID without the possibility of a raise (unless they decide to change their policy).

On the other hand, Magic Ears does leave plenty of room for raises. At the end of each contract, teachers can cash in their carrots (rewards earned for teaching classes and completing various tasks) for a base pay raise.

So in the end, Magic Ears takes the cake when it comes to raises.

Flexibility

✅ Magic Ears

Let’s start with VIPKID. VIPKID’s cancellation policy allows teachers up to six absences within a 6-month contract. After six cancellations, their contract is reviewed for termination.

Magic Ears has a different approach to cancellations. They allow their teachers up to four cancellations per month.

So this category is a no-brainer. Magic Ears has a much more flexible cancelation policy, which is extremely important for busy teachers.

Curriculum

✅ Tie

For many applicants, it’s important to factor in curriculum. And when it comes to curriculum, it’s a tie.

Neither company expects their teachers to create their own lesson plans and both companies have well-written and exciting material.

A Teacher Reading A Book To His Online English Student - Is Magic Ears Legit?

Magic Ears has more of a game-centered curriculum, which makes classes really fun and engaging for the students. VIPKID also has great lesson plans that cover a wide variety of different topics like phonics, grammar, free talk, and more.

So overall, you’ll enjoy the curriculum of both companies.

Hours

✅ VIPKID

When teaching with VIPKID, you have the possibility to work 40+ hours each week if you choose. They are open from 8:30am until 9pm (Beijing Time) every day of the week.

Unfortunately, when teaching with Magic Ears, it isn’t possible to work a consistent 40-hour schedule each week. They run classes from 5pm to 9pm every day of the week, in addition to 9am to 9pm on Saturdays and Sundays (Beijing Time).

On the bright side, Magic Ears does add additional hours during summer holiday and other important Chinese holidays.

So, if you’re looking for a full-time schedule, you may consider teaching for two companies in order to fill your teaching slots.

Overall Winner?

Magic Ears

Based on the above criteria, Magic Ears checks many more important boxes than VIPKID in 2021. Don’t get me wrong, VIPKID is still a quality company, but Magic Ears currently offers teachers a lot more.

Not only will you enjoy flexibility while teaching English online, but you’ll also be paid more and have the possibility of getting a raise; all vital job qualities in my book.

Do You Actually Get Classes?

One of the biggest concerns that aspiring teachers have is, “will I actually get classes?”

Unlike other companies, Magic Ears books classes for their teachers, which means you are guaranteed classes. It’s a breath of fresh air to know that you won’t have to wait for the parents to book your lessons.

Note: It’s important to know that even though the company books classes for you, you’ll receive many more classes if you open up more availability. Therefore, I recommend opening as many time slots as you can.

Do You Actually Get Paid?

Another concern among potential teachers is, “does Magic Ears actually pay you?”

Remember, Magic Ears is a legitimate company with honorable policies and standards. They absolutely pay their teachers; I have never missed a payment from them.

Magic Ears teachers receive payment once per month and each payment is issued on the 10th.

What Do I Need In Order To Teach With Magic Ears?

Now that we’ve established that Magic Ears is a legitimate company and that they offer fantastic perks for their teachers, you’re probably wondering what you’ll need in order to teach with them, right?

There are eight major requirements that every Magic Ears teacher must meet:

Teaching Requirements

Let’s start with educational requirements. Every teacher must meet the following criteria:

1. A Bachelor’s Degree or Currently Enrolled In A 4-Year Program

As an aspiring Magic Ears teacher, you must have a Bachelor’s degree in any subject or you must be currently enrolled in a Bachelor’s program (4-year program).

This is a requirement set by the Ministry of Education in China, so it is non-negotiable.

2. TEFL/TESOL Certificate

In addition to a Bachelor’s degree, every teacher must have a TEFL or TESOL certificate. If you’re unfamiliar with this term, don’t worry!

Online English Teacher Teaching To Her Student Using Fruit For Props.

A TEFL or TESOL certificate just means that you’ve been certified to teach English as a foreign language. These certificates are extremely easy to obtain and you can even get started on your TEFL by completing Magic Ears’ TEFL program: Magic Ears University.

3. Native English Speaker From The USA, Canada, The UK, Australia, or New Zealand

Magic Ears hires native English speakers from the USA, Canada, The UK, Australia, or New Zealand.

Note: As of 2020, California, New York, and Washington State have passed laws limiting independent contract work. Because of these laws, Magic Ears cannot hire teachers from these states.

Classroom Requirements

If you meet all of the location and educational requirements above, then you’re eligible to apply for Magic Ears. In addition, you’ll need the following:

4. A Classroom

Before you get nervous, I don’t meet that you need to rent out a classroom or have a dedicated room just for teaching. You simply need a desk and a background that creates an educational atmosphere.

If you aren’t sure how to set up your classroom, simply purchase a world map tapestry from Amazon, hang it up behind your desk, and start teaching. It’s as easy as that!

5. A Device For Teaching

During each lesson, you will connect with up to four students at a time via video call. This will be over the Magic Ears platform, so you won’t have to worry about downloading or purchasing additional applications.

To teach with Magic Ears, you must have a laptop or desktop computer with at least 4GB of RAM.

6. A Webcam

Most computers and laptops come with a built-in webcam, which will work perfectly for teaching with Magic Ears.

But, in the case that your computer doesn’t have a built-in webcam, you’ll need to purchase one. I recommend the Logitech C90 for online English teaching.

7. A Headset

To reduce noise and echo during your Magic Ears classes, you will need a headset.

Young Teacher Using TPR To Teach English Online.

I’ve been using the Logitech Analog Stereo Headset H151 since I started teaching ESL online three years ago and it hasn’t failed me yet.

8. Stable WiFi

And of course, in order to connect with the students via video chat, you’ll need stable WiFi. Magic Ears recommends that teachers have speeds of at least 20 Mbps download and 5 Mbps upload.

You can check your WiFi speed for free here: speedtest.net

For even more information about Magic Ears, the pros and cons, and how to sign up, check out our extensive review post here.

The Wrap Up: Is Magic Ears Legit?

Among hundreds of online ESL companies, Magic Ears is one of the best in 2021.

Magic Ears is a legitimate company that offers applicants a flexible and exciting job opportunity; one where you can set your own schedule and teach from anywhere in the world. It’s a company that I can honestly recommend.

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