Are you a mom looking to make extra money? The most resourceful moms will be looking to learn more about Magic Ears requirements and this one-of-a-kind online teaching opportunity.
There are loads of perks that come with online teaching, including flexible hours, good pay, zero commute, supportive work environment, and inspiring work assignments.
In fact, Magic Ears online teaching may be just what you need to fill your pockets with substantial cash during your child’s naps or when he or she is at school.
Type of side gig – Teaching English to Chinese kids
Hires – Teachers from North America with English fluency
Schedule – There are 3 kinds of time slots, 7 days a week, see below for more information
Pay – $18/hour to start with the possibility of receiving bonuses and the chance to make up to $26/hour, payment via PayPal or bank transfer
Get all the info below on this interesting side gig for moms (and others).
And if you're seriously considering online ESL teaching, check out these invaluable insider tips from 90+ teachers.
What is Magic Ears?
In Magic Ears strives to be the best online English language school and, in particular, the “superhero” of Chinese kids.
In just 3 years, this online teaching company has exploded on the scene and is continuing to grow. They are currently actively recruiting teachers for Magic Ears jobs (this means you, mama!).
Magic Ears was founded in 2016 by Jarvis DaGama; the headquarters are in Beijing, China.
Currently, it has between 500-1000 employees and is a favorite within the e-learning/education community. Their mission is to bring innovative English language lessons to Chinese students ages 4 – 12.
Magic Ears believes that all Chinese studentsdeserve a decent education and all teachers deserve decent compensation.
By embracing advanced technology, Magic Ears provides employment opportunities to folks who may not be able to commit to a regular 9-to-5 office gig. In other words, it’s a terrific solution for the modern mom looking to make a buck in the comfort of her own home.
What sets Magic Ears teaching apart is their unique online classroom environment.
The focus is on quality instruction that’s both effective and fun. The top-notch curriculum has been created for an intimate setting (the teacher/student ratio is 1 to 4) and promises engaging, memorable lessons. Each class is 25 minutes, which allows for individual attention as well as group interaction.
Working for Magic Ears
So, do you want to become a Magic Ears teacher? Does this online opportunity seem like a good match for you?
First you might want to check out these Magic Ears reviews for some honest feedback from current teachers.
As a mom, you’re probably used to being in control over household situations, family schedules, and more. This take-charge ability is well suited to a Magic Ears teacher.
Keep in mind that you’ll be an independent contractor creating your own schedule and, for the most part, determining how much money you’ll make each month.
Seriously, what’s not to love about that?
Magic Ears requirements
What are the Magic Ears teacher requirements?
First of all, there are a few prerequisites:
You must be a native English-speaker from the US or Canada
You must have a Bachelor’s degree
You must have high-speed internet
You must be able to Skype on your computer
It's worth noting that, while not all online teaching gigs require a Bachelor’s degree, Magic Ears feels this requirement is one way to attract the cream-of-the-crop teachers.
Additionally, previous teaching experience is desirable, though it's not a requirement.
Magic Ears interview
While there isn’t a traditional type of interview, you will need to interact with other teachers and the trainers at Magic Ears. This will take place via the Magic Ears teaching platform.
At first glance, the hiring process may seem quite involved, but give us a minute to walk you through the steps and you’ll see that it’s quite manageable.
Here’s a brief guide to getting hired:
Hand in your application: Include proof of your degree and a current resume.
Made a date for a demo: You’ll use the lesson slides provided by Magic Ears and the demo can be live or pre-recorded (see below for tips on Total Physical Response and how to present yourself and your lesson in the best possible manner).
Complete 2 (paid!) training sessions: The first training will explain more about the company and the classes. It may take up to one hour and you’ll be joined by two teachers and a trainer. It’s conducted on the Magic Ears teaching platform.
In the second training session, you’ll be with just the trainer and the focus will be on getting your first class ready to go! You’ll get lots of tips and tricks of the trade and also some invaluable feedback.
Trial time: Your first class is part of the training process. It will be evaluated by trainers and you’ll receive specific feedback. Remember to incorporate what you learned in the training sessions, and especially to practice Total Physical Response. You may be asked to perform a second trial class (this is pretty standard).
Sign up: Next comes the contract and then a background check.
Time to teach: Once you’ve completed these steps, you’ll be a qualified Magic Ears teacher and you can start filling in your teaching schedule (keeping in mind peak times).
Below is a super helpful video that walks you through the process. Teacher Danielle includes a ton of helpful tips and tricks.
If you’re pressed for time (or just really eager), you may want to ask about the Magic Ears Applicant Fast Track, which can get you up and teaching within 48 hours.
In this video, Teacher Hope explains that option in more detail.
Magic Ears classes and platform
One of the best things about the Magic Ears curriculum is that it’s already written! When you teach with Magic Ears you never ever have to create lesson plans.
What’s more, there are so many lessons available—that always include a slide show, a video and a game—that there’s little danger of getting bored with the material.
That said, you will have to do a bit of homework ahead of time.
Plan on looking over each lesson prior to class so you’ll be familiar and comfortable with the information. The folks at Magic Ears always deliver the lessons ahead of time so you can prep at your convenience.
The average class has 4 students to 1 teacher and the lesson lasts 25 minutes. You should plan to have one-on-one time with each student, as well as time for the kids to interact with each other.
You’ll never have to interface with the parents (leave that to Magic Ears). However, your trainers will fill you in on the parents’ comments and you can always check parental ratings on the teacher portal.
Many beginning Magic Ears teachers worry about creating a classroom environment that’s welcoming and productive. Here are some tips that will have you teaching like a pro in no time.
The look: You want to have a clean, attractive, and welcoming environment. That means good light, quiet surroundings, and zero distractions. When in doubt, use eye-catching colors in the background.
The technical stuff: Magic Ears relies on innovative technology, but you don’t need to get too fancy. Be sure to have a working headset. You also need a reliable internet connection and a computer with comparable internet speed (in this case 10 mbps) and enough memory (4 gb).
The props: One of the best ways to make a positive impression with your Chinese students is to get creative with props. Your trainer will suggest you use at least 2 props per class.
Here are a few ideas:
- White board
- Photographs / Posters
- Hats and other dress up items
- Pretend microphone
- Plush objects
Check out this video of Magic Ears teachers sharing their favorite props.
Magic Ears hours
With the students living in China, you’ll probably be working during odd hours, depending where you live.
Many moms love the unconventional time slots because they’re still able to follow a “normal” schedule during the day time. Moms also enjoy that they control the number of hours per week that they work.
Magic Ears organizes its schedule into 3 types of time slots: special, peak, and regular.
Magic Ears peak hours (EST): Saturday and Sunday 9:00 pm to 10:00 pm; (PST) Saturday and Sunday 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm
Regular hours (EST): Saturday and Sunday 10:30 pm to 6:00 am; Monday – Friday 5:00 am to 6:00 am; (PST) Saturday and Sunday 7:30 pm to 3:00 am; Monday - Friday 2:00 am to 3:00 am
Special hours (EST): Monday - Friday 9:00 pm to 4:30 am; (PST) 6 pm to 1:30 am
What time is it in China, anyway?
The best way to figure out the time difference between the US/Canada and China is to use TimeBie.
All you have to do is enter the two cities or time zones you want to compare and click on "Get Converter" to figure out what kinds of hours you'll be working.
The way it works is you post when you want to work and then wait for your assigned schedule. You’ll always know ahead of time (no later than the night before) what your schedule will be for the next day. This way, you have ample time to prepare for class.
How do you get students to sign up for your classes? Well, this is where your “teacher rank” comes in.
Your rank is established by the Magic Ears administration. What they do is review the comments and feedback you get from parents and trainers, plus they factor in the number of classes you teach (the more the better).
We’ve read that teachers have a pretty easy time filling up their schedules. That said, if you find that you have too much free time, try ramping up your teaching style or choosing a different time slot to see if things pick up.
Magic Ears salary
We know you’re dying to ask, “how much does Magic Ears pay?”
The quick answer is between $9.00 and $11.00 per class with several bonus opportunities.
Starting out, Magic Ears pays each teacher a base rate with the understanding that it can increase.
As a Magic Ears teacher, you’ll be considered an independent contractor. This is important to know because it means you’re in charge of your own state and federal taxes. You’ll receive your pay via PayPal or the money can be deposited directly into your online bank account. Teachers are paid every month on the 10th working day.
Magic Ears has a very specific and easy-to-follow payment plan.
To begin, there’s the base pay, which ranges from $9.00 to $11.00. The base pay is determined by your initial application, including your trial classes.
For example, if you have previous teaching experience, or if you have any teaching degrees or certificates in addition to a BA, such as a TEFL certificate, you have a better chance of getting the higher pay.
A significant perk of working at Magic Ears is the fact that there are several chances to make “bonus” money with each class you teach.
So, if you start out with a base rate of $9.00, you can bump it up to $11.00 or more by doing a few things.
Here’s how to earn a bonus.
Be your best, always. Every three months, Magic Ears does an in-depth review of their teachers. If they are extremely pleased with your overall performance, you may be given a bonus. While it's not certain how much this would be, it’s certainly a good incentive to stay on top of your game!
Be on time, always. Show up 3 minutes early to your assigned class and you’ll be awarded a bonus $1.00 every time. How’s that for easy money?
Be available. Each month, you’re encouraged to schedule as many classes as you can. As an incentive, if you teach over 60 classes per month during peak hous, you’ll receive $1.00 for every additional class.
What do teachers say?
Before you decide if there’s a place for you among Magic Ears teachers, let’s take a look at what others who teach English online are saying. Here’s a summary of what we discovered from online reviews:
- Regarding the pay: Teachers agree that Magic Ears pays a competitive base rate.
- Regarding communication: Teachers say there is “diligent” feedback and timely responses to any emails. The administrative staff is “pleasant” and “respectful” to both teachers and students.
- Regarding the curriculum: The platform is considered “easy to use” and “creative.”
- Regarding the students: Teachers agree that the kids are “sweet” and “enjoyable.” Teachers report having formed strong bonds and friendships with the students ages 4 - 12.
- Regarding the cancellation policy: Across the board, Magic Ears is said to have the best cancellation policy of all the online teaching programs.
- Regarding social media: Here is where teachers tend to disagree. While some applaud Magic Ears for having a strong social media presence (lots of videos on YouTube, for example), others feel that too much energy and hype is put into maintaining this platform.
- Regarding the hiring process: Teachers agree that the Magic Ears interviewis unconventional and the hiring process may be time consuming. However, they also agree that the amount of support and training make it worthwhile.
Other online teaching platforms
You might be sold on becoming an online English language teacher, but you still may wonder if Magic Ears is the best online ESL company for you.
If you want to get going in this sector but you need some help deciding, here’s a little bit about Magic Ears’ biggest competitors.
DaDaABC is a leading name in online English language instruction.
The major difference with DaDaABC is its reach. The company covers China, Korea, Japan, France, and Germany and it hires native English language speakers from the US and Canada, and also from Australia and New Zealand.
They have a similar multi-step hiring process and a comparable base pay; however, they do not have as many bonus incentives as Magic Ears.
In addition, they are stricter about adhering to a schedule, requiring at least 2 hours of teaching per week, and they ask that you let them know 30 days in advance if you need to cancel a class. Magic Ears requires a 14-day notice.
DaDaABC will reduce your pay if you miss too many classes.
The basics of SayABC are familiar: English language instruction for kids in China ages 5 - 12 with a 1-to-4 teacher/student.
A class at SayABC is 15 minutes longer than a Magic Ears class, but the base rate is significantly higher at $15.00.
SayABC has different bonus incentives (including a referral link), but there are ways to earn a base pay of up to $21.00.
A Bachelor’s degree is required if you want to land a contract for longer than 3 months at SayABC. Previous teaching experience is encouraged, but not required.
The hiring process is straightforward and incudes a 40-minute interview (which includes trial classes), an application, contract consultation, orientation and evaluation.
From start to finish you could be teaching in for SayABC within 10 to 14 days.
Magic Ears vs. VIPKid
Of all the English language instruction sites, VIPKid is probably the most competitive with Magic Ears.
What makes VIPKid so appealing is that it is the only site of its kind to host 1-on-1 classes. In other words, each student receives individual attention for the entire 25 minutes.
VIPKid is flexible in terms of scheduling; there are no minimum hours.
The base rate is between $14.00 and $18.00 and there are enough incentives to earn up to $22.00 per class. You do need a Bachelor’s degree, but it can be in any subject. You must be a native English language speaker with a North American accent.
Of all the companies, VIPKid may have the most rigorous hiring procedure (definitely more time consuming than the Magic Ears interview).
Once the application is filled out, there is an interview plus a demo class, then a training session followed by 2 “test” demo classes (with feedback that will emphasize the importance of using total physical response).
If you pass the tests, you will be given a 6-month contract and a background check before becoming an official VIPKid teacher.
Why this is a great gig for moms
For moms looking for a side hustle as an independent contractor, Magic Ears may be just the thing.
Besides offering a flexible schedule and decent pay, Magic Ears teaches something pretty special, namely quality English language instruction for students ages 4 - 12.
As a Magic Ears teacher, you’ll be making a difference in children’s education while supplementing your own income; now that’s a win-win situation!
What’s more, Magic Ears teachers are constantly learning and improving their skills within the classroom.
With the excellent teaching platform, guidance from the trainers, and feedback from parents, there’s always a chance to increase your teacher’s rank and build up your schedule.
Certainly, as a busy mom, this is just the type of motivation and support that will ensure your happiness and success as part of the Magic Ears team.