As a VIPKID teacher, certifications should be a term you know and understand. Teachers earn certifications in order to teach new levels of students. These certifications help parents select the perfect VIPKID teacher for their son or daughter.
In this post, you’re going to learn everything you need to know about VIPKID certifications: how to earn them and which certifications help you get more bookings.
How To Get More VIPKID Certifications
VIPKID teachers are encouraged to earn as many certifications as possible. Having more certifications means you can teach more classes and more students.
Initially, VIPKID teachers are given two certifications: either levels 2 & 3 or levels 4 & 5. You can choose between these options when preparing for your mock class.
As soon as you sign your contract, you’ll be able to earn more certifications. Do this by navigating to your “Resources” tab and clicking on “Certifications” in the drop-down menu.
Once in the Certification Center, you’ll be able to access many certifications. If a certification displays “Vacancies”, this means you can apply for it. If a certification says “Unavailable”, you’ll need to check back in a week or two. This means they are completely full at the moment.
To apply for certifications, some require special prerequisites like the picture shown below. Other certifications can be obtained by any VIPKID teacher regardless of qualifications and prerequisites.
Most certifications can be earned by reviewing materials about the level and passing a quiz. Other certifications require that the teacher submits a demo video. You’ll be able to see what the steps are when clicking on a specific certification.
At the top of the Certification Center, you’ll see a list of different VIPKID certifications. Below, I will explain each certification in detail.
Major Course Certifications
Major course certifications are the most common VIPKID certifications and classes. A major course class refers to classes WITHOUT any specific focus (i.e grammar, phonics, etc).
If you’re a new teacher with VIPKID, I highly recommend getting as many major course certifications as you can. These are the most common classes taken within the platform, therefore the more you have, the higher your booking rates will be.
Each major course level is different and focuses on unique learning objectives. I’ll cover each one below:
PreVIP (Level 1)
This is the lowest level on the VIPKID platform and it caters to young students that don’t have any experience with the English language.
With the PreVIP level 1 certification, you’ll teach students ranging in age from 3 to 6. The key lesson objectives include an introduction to basic vocabulary words and alphabet recognition.
In other words, the student will be repeating after you for the majority of the lesson and you’ll practice letter sounds.
There are many pros and cons to obtaining the PreVIP level 1 certificate. Since Chinese parents like to introduce English to their children at a young age, it’s a highly demanded level.
Another positive to having the PreVIP level 1 certificate is that it’s easier to book classes outside of peak and peak-peak hours. Since the students are young, many of them aren’t in school during the day, which leaves them free to take VIPKID classes.
During my first year of teaching, I earned this certification. However, as time went on, I realized that teaching PreVIP level 1 students made me completely exhausted. Because of their age, you’ll need to work hard to keep their focus. After a few months of having this certification, I asked VIPKID to remove it.
Level 2 is the most common VIPKID level taught on the platform. Having this certification will greatly benefit your booking rate.
Level 2 focuses on letter sounds, blending techniques, reading, and more vocabulary recognition. They also learn proper pronoun-verb agreement and structuring sentences.
VIPKID students that take level 2 could potentially be ESL beginners, but their ability to understand and comprehend new concepts is higher than those taking PreVIP level 1 classes. They tend to be a bit older than PreVIP students, ranging in age from 5 to 8.
Level 3 caters to students that can read with few mistakes, can understand and answer basic questions, and can mostly comprehend what they read. With this level, teachers will focus on conjugating verbs properly.
These students typically range in age from 7 to 12, but this can vary depending on their educational background. With level 3 students, you’ll notice a significant growth in confidence and behavior management.
Don’t get me wrong, most of my level 2 students can stay focused throughout the entire lesson, but level 3 students tend to be more serious about their schoolwork.
Another step up from level 3 is… level 4, you guessed it!
Level 4 focuses on conjugating verbs, using these verbs in conversation, reading complex stories, and effectively using compound sentences.
This is my personal favorite level to teach. Level 4 students are typically pretty excited to use their English skills and engage in conversation. They usually range in age from 9 to 12.
From this point on, your students should be pretty advanced. Engaging in conversation should be easy for them. At level 5, reading skills are fluent and they can accurately answer comprehension questions.
Level 5 students usually range in age from 9 to 12
This level is very similar to level 5. In this level, you’ll be working with students who should be able to nearly take over the lesson. What I mean by this is that the student should do the majority of the talking. You’ll want to ask them detailed questions, use rich vocabulary words, and compound sentences.
Level 6 students are typically 10 to 12 years old.
During my first two contracts with VIPKID, I didn’t even know level 7 existed. Level 7 is the highest level on the VIPKID platform and it’s the highest certification you can get as a teacher.
Keep in mind, earning the level 7 certification doesn’t mean that you’ve made it to the top. VIPKID teachers are all different and have unique ways of teaching lessons. Some teachers prefer teaching older students, others enjoy teaching the young ones.
Level 7 is simply a continuation of level 6. This level expands further on reading materials, advanced vocabulary terms, and conversation, but ultimately it’s not much of a change from level 6.
The student should have control of the conversation and will be doing the majority of the talking. These students range in age from 10 to 12 years old.
Another certification that I highly recommend to new VIPKID teachers is the trial certification. With this certification, you’ll be able to teach trial classes, which are very plentiful in the VIPKID world.
Trial classes cater to students that aren’t currently signed up with VIPKID. This is a way for VIPKID to market their business and gain new paying students.
As teachers, we receive full payment for teaching trial classes (unless the student doesn’t show up). Not only are they a great way to connect with new students and possibly add to your list of “regulars”, but these classes are exceptionally easy to teach.
Since the students have never taken VIPKID classes before, they don’t know what to expect. If you mess up, the student would never know! Just do your best to create a fun environment and teach the student something new. Easy!
Starlight certifications are a little different from other lessons taught on the VIPKID platform. The Starlight classes help older students understand and learn basic English. These students are beginners, having started their ESL journey later than usual.
VAE certifications include a trial level, level one, and level two. Students that take these courses range in age from 10 to 15 years old. They need extra help with grammar and can also work on reading and writing fluency.
There are a plethora of supplementary certifications available for VIPKID teachers. These include grammar lessons, TOEFL classes, free talk classes (my favorite), and many more.
VIPKID frequently adds more supplementary certifications as they produce new teaching materials and lessons. Check back every once in a while to see if they’ve added any that you might like to earn.
Read next: 5 Clever VIPKID Reward System Ideas
The Wrap-Up: VIPKID Certifications
Certifications make the VIPKID world go ’round. Earning as many certifications as possible can help you gain more students and increase your booking rate. On the other hand, certifications can also help you connect with students that you feel comfortable teaching.
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