Updated: Jun 7
How to make money as a full-time RVer.
If you ask any full-time RVer, there are so many different ways you can make money from the road. This is a question we get all the time, "What do you do to make money to be able to travel full-time?" Unfortunately, we have not won the lottery yet. One of the ways that we make money is I (Patty) teach English as a second language with the company VIPKID.
When we decided that we wanted to sell everything and go full-time, we knew we needed more income. Shane is retired from the Air Force and gets retirement pay, but it is not enough pay to cover all of our expenses. I will be quitting my full-time position with the government because I am not able to travel with that job. I am also not old enough to retire, so I can't draw a retirement pay yet.
For the last couple of years I have looked around to trying to find jobs that I could apply to where I could work full-time from the RV. I had a friend several years ago who taught for VIPKID and she tried to get me to apply. At the time I brushed it off because I had a full-time job. One day I happened to be on a Facebook group and saw someone talking about teaching from their RV. I had no idea you could teach from your camper. I then reached out to my friend and asked her, how do I apply.
I have always loved working with kids. I started out with home day care, I ran youth events when I worked at a library, and I managed the pre-teen/teen center when we lived in Turkey. I knew once I started researching teaching with this company, this was exactly what I wanted to do.
VIPKID is a company based out of China. It is an online platform that enables English speaking teachers to teach English to kids in China. You are able to set our own schedule, you chose when you work and where you work. You can work from your home, from your RV, from your car, or from a hotel bathroom. FYI, I have taught from all these places. As long as you have a computer, laptop, or tablet, and a fast reliable internet connection you can teach anywhere. You will teach one on one with students and no lesson planning, VIPKID does it all for you. You log in and start teaching, it is that easy. You can between $14 - $22 an hour, depending on your experience. They pay you per class, so it would be $7 - $11 per class.
How to apply. All you need is a bachelor's degree, any bachelor's degree qualifies you to apply. You need to be legally able to work in the USA or Canada. You will need some experience working with kids, babysitting and being a parent qualifies. First you click on my link here to apply, and I will become your mentor. As a mentor you can contact me for any questions, and how to get through the process, I receive a small one time referral payment from the company. If that link doesn't work you can log into VIPKID and use my referral code PATRI0422.
Please Note: If you live and work in the state of California, as part of the Assembly Bill 5 of the California Labor Law was signed into effect in 2020, VIPKID no longer hires residents in CA.
The whole process is done online through their website, and it's user friendly. Once, you pass the initial application process you will need to do a short demo lesson and a mock class. This is also done online where you will have a current teacher watch and see how you would teach a class. Once you pass this process is complete you will receive a 6-month contract to sign. The whole process can take a up to a week or two. Tip: Most people do not pass their first time, so don't get frustrated if you don't pass the first or second time. You can take the mock class many times until you pass. It is also not mandatory that you teach a certain amount of classes. If you teach one or two classes and decide it is not for you, you just don't open any more classes. You are in charge of your teaching schedule and if you want to teach.
What you will need to teach. You will not need all of these to begin teaching. I will put a star by the ones that are mandatory.
1. *Laptop, computer, or tablet, nothing fancy. You can use one you already have as long as it will connect to the internet, and is able to download the VIPKID app.
2. Light source - this can be a small cheap round clip light from Amazon like the one pictured, or you can just use a lamp you already have at home.
3. *Backdrop - You can go cheap and purchase a shower curtain, fabric remnant, wrapping paper, felt. I purchased an inexpensive personalized backdrop from Vistaprint.. You can see mine above in the photos.
4. External camera - Most laptops have cameras on them, but they are not always great. A good external camera is really a gamechanger. If it is a good camera, you will not even need an external light. A good camera makes all the difference when teaching. It is so much better when the student can see you.
5. *Headphones - you don't need an expensive headset, but you do need one that has a microphone like the one I have linked. You can always pick up a pair at Walmart or Target as well.
6. *Props - Props can be 2d or 3d. It is best to get some of each. I have a lot that I just found
pictures of on google images, printed them out and laminated them. Then some 3D ones I found at Dollar Tree, Walmart, & Target dollar spot. I have some small foods, balls, flashcards, dolls, animals, & some misc. toys.
7. Puppets - Puppets are not mandatory, but I find they help when you have really young kids, it helps to get them to open up a bit. I found mine on Amazon and on the VIPKID store website which you can also purchase on Amazon. (Just search VIPKID on Amazon and it comes up with a lot of items.
8. *Awards - Awards are mandatory to teach. You will see in the training they want you to award them with different prizes. I have printed those out as well, found some at Dollar
Tree, and they have some on Amazon as well, like this ice cream award.
9. Adjustable height portable laptop stand. This is not mandatory, you can always use books or boxes. But, this one is inexpensive and great because you can raise it up to stand
If you are interested in teaching for VIPKID feel free to email or DM me on Instagram with any questions you have. Our email is firstname.lastname@example.org I will answer any questions and walk you through the entire process. Once you are ready to apply click on this link to be directed to sign up under my account. Also, use my referral code PATRI0422.