Teaching & Tutoring English Online from Home

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Online teaching is becoming more and more common these days. Modern technology makes it possible for online teachers to pass their knowledge to students with the same level of quality as teachers in a classroom setting. Therefore, online English teachers are in high demand nowadays.

Home tutors have a wide range of online teaching opportunities to choose from. If you want to have a rest from daily commuting to work, get additional income besides your full-time job, or work after retirement, then home-based online teaching can be the right choice for you.

Let’s see which home tutor jobs are at your disposal.

Independent Online Teaching

teaching english online from home

An online teacher with vast teaching experience can work with individual students as an independent contractor or freelancer. This way, they can still use different online tutoring service platforms to advertise their skills and connect with more potential students. As an independent contractor, an English teacher online has more flexibility in setting their hourly salary, unlike in language schools, which offer fixed prices. A salary of a qualified independent online teacher may range from $25 to $50 per hour.

Online Teacher at Language School

For beginner teachers, the best option would be to apply for an English teaching position at an online learning service like VIPKID. The service sets a curriculum for you and you can work full- or part-time. An average hourly wage for online English teachers at online language schools may vary from $9 to over $20, depending on your qualifications, expertise, and which service you use.

Online Course Developer

You can develop and sell your own language courses at online educational platforms. This form of teaching isn’t as interactive as when you teach English online with Skype or another video messaging service, but you can answer the students’ questions and consult them on course-related issues. Course prices also vary depending on your qualifications, typically ranging from $10 to $100 per course.

Teaching English Online from Home: Pros and Cons

Like anything else, teaching at home has its own advantages and disadvantages, and may not suit everyone. If you cannot decide whether you want to teach languages online, we can help you by outlining the possible pros and cons.

The Pros

  1. Saved time. You get more time both to prepare your lessons and to have a rest. No more time is spent on commuting to and from work.
  2. Flexibility. If you’re an independent online teacher who works with individual students, you can be more flexible when planning your schedule.
  3. Broad audience. You can work as an ESL teacher and teach students from all over the world without the need to move into another country.

The Cons

  1. Technical issues. Sometimes the internet connection can be quite unstable, leading to cancelled lessons and lost money. In this case, you can ask your internet provider for another contract that offers more stable connection. Even so, being late for a class because of a traffic jam is more stressful than unstable internet connection.
  2. Lack of personal interaction. For example, when you teach language online to kids, you may experience limitations, as kids need more games and moving activities than adults to keep them engaged. However, some features of Skype, like animated emoticons, can compensate such lack of interaction.

See this article for examples of games and moving activities.

Still, despite some drawbacks, teaching English online has many benefits and is great for innovative teachers who would like to expand their teaching experience. Let’s take a more detailed look at how teaching English online from home typically works.

How to Teach English from Home

If we consider the standard methods for teaching kids English, then it’s important to know that teacher-centered methods are not suitable for online teaching, as online teaching requires a lot of interaction and input from the students. The best approach would be the content-centered method, where students are encouraged to speak English as much as possible to improve their skills.

What about online tools that could be used to teach languages online?

So far, Skype is the most popular tool that is used by at-home tutors. It’s free of charge and quite flexible as it offers not only offers video and audio messaging, but also screen-sharing capabilities. A nice alternative to Skype is Google Hangouts.

When it comes to exchanging learning materials, home tutors prefer to use Google Docs or Dropbox for sharing. Many materials require quite a lot of hard drive space and therefore it may take lots of time to send the files via Skype or by email. Some teachers even use social media networks such as Facebook to share the homework and answer the students’ questions.

It’s important for online teachers to not let the convenience of the process take away from their preparation. You should still be professional, prepared, and ready to teach English, even if its in a less formal environment.

As you can see, there’s a wide variety of online language teaching jobs to choose from. If you’re ready for the online teaching challenge, then choose the option that fits you best and start off with completely new and exciting teaching experience.


Earn up to $22 an Hour Teaching English from Home

29 COMMENTS

  1. HI, I taught K-3 for 14 years and now home-school my own kids, 13 and 17 who I adopted from another country at ages 4 and 7 so I spent much time quickly teaching them English!! I love teaching and am finding your program very interesting! My kids do partial home-school through a Charter School and have their own classes full days Mondays and Wednesdays so those might be some of the best days for me to teach!

    Please tell me more and advise me how best to proceed! Looks like an amazing program.

    • Sure, and thanks for your interest! Just sign up on this page: t.vipkid.com.cn

      The instructions should be fairly straightforward after that.

  2. […] Teachers can tune themselves in for the upcoming class and buy themselves some time. Students, especially younger ones, can have fun, get to know each other, and learn something new at the same time. Just like athletes need to warm up their muscles before their activities, students need to “warm up” their brains. The warm up activities should take about 5 minutes, and you can can be taught either by classroom teachers or online ESL teachers. […]

  3. […] ESL writing activities are important because they teach students to express their thoughts and use arguments so they can support their points of view in English. Therefore, it is important to do ESL writing exercises not only as homework, but also as a classroom activity. In this article, we will outline some interesting ESL writing activities that are suitable for interactive work in a classroom or while teaching ESL online.  […]

  4. […] “Jeopardy!” is a popular TV game where participants need to come up with trivia questions that match the given answers. You can create your own jeopardy game to check the knowledge of your ESL students, practice the formation of questions, and just liven up the lesson. In this article, we are going to instruct you on how to create jeopardy and how to play this ESL jeopardy game in a classroom or when teaching English online. […]

  5. I liked how the pros/cons were outlined. All jobs have them. I am blessed to work for Vipkid. I love their flexible hours & working from home.

  6. I love teaching online! I tell my family, “I’m off to China!” and I go to my classroom for an hour or two and enjoy teaching time with Chinese students. No commute. I can continue teaching even when my husband is not home, because I don’t leave the house. Love doing this as a homeschool mom.

  7. I always prepare my lessons in advance. I get my props and lessons ready in a ziplock bag with the name of the lesson on the front of each bag and I review it several times. It is a little difficult right now because I’m a new VIPKID teacher just getting familiar with the curriculum. Maybe in the future with more experience…everything will become easier. Being prepared is the key!

  8. I taught ESL in a b&m classroom for 3 years. Teaching online is much more enjoyable though there is prep time involved here as well.

  9. […] Tongue twisters are another efficient type of ESL pronunciation exercises. You can find a wide variety of them on the internet and use them during your classes, for example, as pre-class warm up activities. Write a tongue twister on the board and have the class read it aloud. Then wipe out some words and have the class read the twister again, remembering the wiped-out words. After that, you can wipe out more words, and so on. You can also encourage the students to make their own tongue twisters based on the sounds that are most difficult for them to remember. This exercise is easily applicable to one-on-one ESL tutors or online English teachers. […]

  10. […] ESL writing activities are important because they teach students to express their thoughts and use arguments so they can support their points of view in English. Therefore, it is important to do ESL writing exercises not only as homework, but also as a classroom activity. In this article, we will outline some interesting ESL writing activities that are suitable for interactive work in a classroom or while teaching ESL online.  […]

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