As global trade, travel and communication increase, it’s increasingly important for young people to grow up bilingual or multilingual. Students and teachers need the opportunity to extend and expand their global understandings and skills.
Over 3,000 teachers, 85% in North America, are teaching Chinese children English on VIPKID. The split screen video conferencing platform shares a lesson and picture of the student.
The engaging content is Common Core aligned (a marketing plus in China), but it’s the teachers that make the difference on VIPKID.
Teachers are interviewed, trained and well equipped to teach English on VIPKID. They receive feedback and benefit from ongoing training.
Student choice is integrated into the design of the platform, as students can identify a teacher preference. Some stick with one teacher while others enjoy variety.
“We look for teachers with passion and love, teachers who really want to help the kids,” said CEO Cindy Mi.
Before founding VIPKID in 2013, Cindy worked in tutoring centers for 14 years. Students visited the centers for three-hour sessions. She has learned that two 25 minute sessions online is far more engaging and more effective than those long in person sessions.
“About 50 percent of the communication is nonverbal,” explained Mi. “It takes about three classes to get used to teaching online.” A little practice results in great student interaction. In this video, she shares more about VIPKID and its vision:
VIPKID raised $125 million from prominent investors including Alibaba chairman Jack Ma.
Investment to date has supported a sophisticated platform to improve the student experience and to provide teachers with assessment data and comments from the previous teacher. The information equips teachers to personalize learning for each student. They currently support more than 10,000 classes each day.
In a trip to California last week, Cindy met with 30 teachers. Some were California public school teachers that appreciate a second income. Others are retired or are taking a year off after the birth of a child.
Want to learn more about teaching English online and connect beyond your own classroom? Check out the VIPKID blog for some great teacher stories.
VIPKID added 1,000 teachers last month and intends to continue hiring at that pace. Interested? Sign up here.
For more on language acquisition see:
- Dual Language Education for Equity & Economic Development
- Getting Smart on Global Education and Equity
- Supporting English Language Learners with Next-Gen Tools
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