I have been working with children around the globe for over 15 years, whether in inner city drop-in centres, cross-cultural exchanges or as a children’s pastor in a large urban area. But burnout hit hard, and after taking over a year to recover, I began looking for small ways to use my skills again and bring in whatever income I could to help support our family.

I tried various side-hustles; knowing I was not cut out for MLM work, I did transcription work, surveys and sold my own hand-blended teas. At times, it felt like I was working harder than I had in a 9-5 job, for less money, but still struggling with health, I needed the flexibility to be able to take chunks of time off whenever needed.

For me, VIPkid was a game-changer. Honestly, I signed up thinking it’d just be one more way to make another $50 online – nothing big, but every little bit helps. While the application process was daunting, I was good at working with kids, and the idea of teaching (even ESL, which I had zero experience in) seemed much more enjoyable than trying to do sales.

Within the first week, I had fallen in love with the students. By week two my husband was starting to wonder if I had gone crazy – waking up in the wee hours of the morning, singing nursery-rhyme songs to myself throughout the day and cutting out pictures of cute animals in my free time. But when my first pay check came, he too was sold. My kids found it fascinating that I would ask for their toys (or just find their toys missing…) and soon became eager sidekicks in planning for my lessons. (They still love to be my guinea pigs when testing new rewards!). This job helped us get out of debt, fills gaps in our irregular income and is the seed money for some big dreams we had put on hold.

For some, it’s a way to earn a few extra bucks here and there. For me, it has been a half-time job with flexible hours that I love! Not everyone is cut out to be an independent contractor as there’s a lot of self-motivation needed, but for those who are, VIPkid is awesome!

Working alone in your basement can be a very isolating job, and I’ve found an incredible online VIPkid teaching community I’ve grown to respect and appreciate. There are some amazingly generous people who donate so much of their time and talents to freely support one another. I can’t even begin to say thank you to some of those creators! (The google slide group comes to mind!). I started this site as a way to give back to the people “in the trenches” who made my transition to online teaching so much smoother by their tips and support! I have a lot of fun creating my own printables and now that I’m a veteran teacher, am able to answer some of the questions that often cause confusion, so I thought I’d contribute in my own way.

If you have ideas or want to contact me, you can reach me at kirsten@teacherkirsten.com

Happy teaching!