How to Teach English Online and Get Paid (2021 Side-Hustle)
With the convenience of learning remotely being utilised more than ever, the opportunity to teach English online could be a fantastic option for those who have had to rethink their career path or find a way to earn extra money in these uncertain times.
These days we have seen some serious shifts in the way work is approached. Advancements in technology have enabled us to perform more work tasks from home, and opportunities for teaching online have grown, offering tons of flexibility and autonomy.
Teaching English online will see you guiding students of all ages in learning English as a second language. Along with providing personal fulfilment, teaching English is an amazing opportunity to meet new people from different walks of life and varying countries and cultures.
Here, we take a good look at how to start teaching English online and what’s involved in this exciting role.
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What’s so good about teaching English online?
Create an awesome lifestyle
Do you want to be able to do work you love from anywhere and have the flexibility to schedule your workday your way? Teaching English as a foreign language can provide this and more, especially if you decide to teach independently.
Connect with real people and make a real difference
Teaching online opens you up to a world of new people with fascinating reasons and motivations for learning English. Having the ability to connect with people and impart knowledge can be incredibly satisfying. For teachers that choose to go it alone, using social media to join or create communities of like-minded people in the industry is fun, and can in turn bring you more business.
Get valuable experience in teaching
Teaching English online is an excellent way to get your foot in the door for education. If you find a real passion for teaching while working in this role, you’re well placed to leverage your experience and become a teacher in Australia. All you’d need to do is earn a teaching degree (and you may even be eligible for extra credit since you’ll already have qualifications and experience).
It can be an awesome side-hustle
Starting a job teaching English online doesn’t have to be a full-time gig. Many people start out taking on a few classes here and there while retaining other jobs. The “side-hustle” approach can be a great way to try it out before committing and you’ll have an extra income stream in the meantime.
Has great earning potential
The money side of teaching English online can vary greatly and depends on whether you decide to teach privately or for a company. If you choose to take on this role as an independent service (which, of course, has more work involved), your earning potential is only limited to what your student is willing to pay.
What is it like to teach English online?
The online class
When you teach an online English class, you will either take a group or an individual student through an online lesson via Zoom (or another video teaching platform). Lessons last between 25 minutes and an hour and they’re conducted entirely in English.
Students could range from very young children to high school students and even adults. Some will have little to no ability in the English language, while others may already have excellent English language skills.
If you work for a language school, you’ll be given lesson guides to teach from. However, if you wish to work for yourself, you will need to create your own lesson plans.
A day teaching English online
A regular day teaching English online could vary greatly:
Some teachers may have a jam-packed schedule every day because that is how they have arranged to work. For example, the average day could start with the first class at 8 am and have continuous classes until 4 pm (with breaks and admin time allowed).
Other teachers might only teach part-time and have one class scheduled a day because they work other jobs. And some might only have a couple of classes a week.
Once again, the fantastic thing about a job teaching English online is, it has the flexibility to fit in with any lifestyle!
Do you need any qualifications or experience to teach English online?
What are the requirements?
It is also advisable to study for an accredited TESOL or TEFL Certificate. Having this qualification can now give you the opportunity to use your skills and experience overseas when we can travel again.
Working for a company may require you to have the following:
You may have more experience than you think:
You don’t need a bachelor’s degree or years of teaching experience to start teaching English online, but you will need to be prepared to start in an entry-level position, especially when working for a teaching company.
Many previous work environments may have given you a level of experience and you may even be surprised by how much teaching you may have already done. For example, if you have ever worked in an environment that has required you to onboard new staff, train people in new systems or processes, or work with children, these are all skills that carry over to teaching roles.
What personal skills are needed?
Like any online teaching job, you will need strengths in certain areas:
Is it easy to get a job teaching English online?
Getting a teaching job with a company
Starting in an entry-level position within an education company is a great way to get extra insight into the field and learn the ropes. From here, you can gain experience and increase your responsibilities and salary over time. The experience and insight you gain will place you well to teach independently in the future.
How to apply for jobs teaching English online:
Independently teaching English online
The option to teach privately is by far the most challenging and admin-heavy path. But—with great effort comes great reward. Once you have studied, created your teaching plans and materials, and set up your freelance business systems and, you can start to market yourself to the public, set up your own schedule and charge as much as you like.
There are some great tips on how to teach English online as a freelancer here.
Is a job teaching English online secure?
Like any new job, you want to be sure that you are not starting a path that has a dead-end. Luckily, with the current worldwide situation we find ourselves in, remote roles are likely to increase in demand in the future.
No matter what is going on in the world, there will always be people learning English as a second language, and as countries become increasingly connected professionally and personally, there will always be a need for language teachers.
One thing is for sure, if you want a job that you can make your own, fit in with your lifestyle and offer security for the future, you can’t go past teaching English online.
With the opportunity to work and turn your new qualification into a business, the sky’s the limit for your income and career progression.