Why to NOT teach English online
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Why to NOT teach English online


Hi everyone it’s me Carli and today I’m
making a video about ten bad things with teaching ESL online. Alright so in case
you’ve never seen it before like I said my name is Carli and I work for 51Talk it’s one of the the biggest highest paying online ESL teaching companies I’ve
been working for them for about three years now and I’ve been teaching offline
as well for almost six years now I have some other videos about 51talk if you
want to learn more about it as well it’s other online ESL teaching companies so
be sure to check out my channel if you want to learn more about how to teach
English online or offline I live in Spain. I’m making up a new video today I
have a new video in a long time. I’ve been really busy in fact right now I’m
like a sick I just traveled I went to Poland and I went to Berlin and now I’m
sick. I really hope you guys like this video. Please like it if you like it and
be sure to subscribe to my channel but anyway let’s get into it let me tell you
some bad things about teaching ESL online and let me just say before I
really get started that I hope this does not discourage you from teaching ESL
online. This video is more so to let you know what the real scoop is because it’s
not all perfect and I do feel like a lot of people who recruit and refer are not
keeping it 100 all the time because they are thinking about making referral money
or maybe because in their contract they’re actually not allowed to say negative things about the company which is
understandable so anyway this is just like a general video I’m not talking
about any one company in particular these are problems that I see with most
companies the problems are from bad to worse let me just say that teaching ESL
online is still a relatively new and booming business a lot of things are
constantly evolving and changing listen the company it used to be a lot of
one-on-one classes and now it’s more typical to have one teacher with like a
group of student classes the first thing I want to say is really bad about you
ESL online is that you are literally an edutainer what’s an edutatainer?
It’s the educator entertainer put together edutainer. Duck duck duckkkkk. I prefer to
be a teacher more so than like trying to entertain people but when you’re
teaching online you need to attract the attention of your students so a lot of
the companies look for you to be using props things you need to buy or have in your house if you have kids so I mean it takes a lot of energy to be like that all day and the higher paying companies usually have students there are children
and you just need to be smiling have high energy. If you don’t want to be
using a lot of props flash cards you’re gonna need to search a little harder to
work for a company that’s geared towards adults I do have a video about what is
the best company to work with adults for so be sure to check that out. Number two.
Students. The students themselves can be horrible. I mean don’t get me wrong I
have students that I love but here are some different issues with different
companies flashers cambly check out that video yeah flashers um bad kids kids
that literally just are not paying attention to what you’re saying they’re
not listening to you they really don’t want to be in the class their parents
are forcing them to be there crazy demanding parents. Parents I mean you’re
just keep in mind that you’re dealing with parents well be from a different
culture and mostly these companies have students that are based in Asia and the
culture is really different some of the parents are really intense number three
is that you need to have a really good internet. Fast internet, stable internet.
You need to have a reliable computer. Well probably really need to have two
computers just in case something happens and I’m talking about up-to-date
computers like relatively new all of these platforms require you to have
really good technology so that’s a big investment for you if you don’t already
have it number four bad thing about teaching ESL
online is that in order for you to actually make a substantial income you
need to add 40 hours a week you are going to need to work for multiple
companies you’re going to need to do your research
to figure out how you can work for multiple companies because some
companies do not allow you to work for other companies and some companies only
have peak hours at certain times so yeah it’s just a good idea in general toward
for multiple companies if you’re really relying on teaching online to for your
income is as your sole income if you’re just trying to supplement your income
it’s probably not so important number five I would say is discrimination for
sure there is discrimination for sure there is discrimination and the online
is a little teaching field I wonder if I work for 51talk specifically because they seem
to not discriminate in the same way that I’ve seen a lot of other companies
discriminate and when I say discriminate I mean of course race age or your
nationality yeah so if you were born and in a native english-speaking country
it’s gonna be a lot easier for you to find work just because you have that
Passport just because you were educated in those
countries which is kind of crazy because you can be a native English speaker and
have terrible grammar I mean but on the converse the companies don’t want to
hire a non-native English speakers because they I think a lot of times are
scared that their level of English is not high enough but as far as with age
the older you are the more difficult it probably will be for you and race the
darker the you are higher the more difficult is gonna be for you and but
it’s possible obviously I’m black so is it definitely possible to get work
actually I just kind of combined five and six okay so here’s number seven
these companies will change your contract at will if they want there they
can just be like oh we don’t we no longer will offer this incentive and you
are gonna get paid like a dollar fifty less per hour and there’s nothing you
can do about it and many big companies have done this and do do this and and
you just have no control you are a freelancer
independent contractor but they’ll change your contract like when they want
to yeah so be sure just to always read your contract always read your service
agreement try to know what’s going on eight number eight
I would say is probably not so common but it does happen is if you work for a
small company you’re playing yourself more at risk to get scammed or not be
paid at a certain point I’ve seen certain companies go under and then end
up not paying their teachers money yeah I mean it happened to me offline like in
Spain I have a video about it and I would just say it was at the end I
couldn’t get my money it was just impossible so keep that in mind as
you’re working for a company that’s probably not in the same country where
you live where you don’t know anything about the laws how to get a lawyer how
are you gonna steal this company if they decide not Spain how are you going to
contact if they just decide to block you on skype email Facebook whatever they
block you everywhere what are you gonna do I particularly like 51talk my
company because it’s traded on the New York Stock Exchange so I feel like
they’ve got a little bit more to lose if they end up not paying all their
teachers I could be wrong but yeah number nine which is really bad is that
at any point if say a parent complains about something you did and the company
believes the parent or they want to investigate it further they might say
okay so you are not going to have any classes until we finish this
investigation we’re not paying you. No, you can’t get any more classes and
that’s just it that’s just it they can take away your
classes at will and that’s your source of income so I mean that’s a huge
problems that they have a lot of control over your classes when you work if they
take your classes all the way if they want to change your pay I mean and like
I said this this is and has happened with many big online ESL teaching companies.
Companies I have made videos about and number ten they will fire you
of course. They can just say any excuse they want really and be like you’re
fired and it has happened it’s happening so
why did I tell you all this what um because I want less competition now
I’m just kidding just kidding I told you all this so that you are aware of how
that online ESL teaching industry is so you don’t feel bad if any of these
things happen to you so you have an idea of what what it really is because it
looks wonderful at first you’re getting paid a lot of money to teach from your
house and you can change your schedule you have a lot of freedom with that you
are your own boss okay it sounds really great it is great but these things are
also true so I would say the biggest thing to take away from this video is
that it’s a good idea to work for multiple companies it’s a good idea to
always be paying attention to what’s happening try to talk to reliable
sources to find out like the real scoop but your company is all about. what’s
happening with me? I’m still working for 51talk. I am looking for other
companies right now and I’m planning to make new videos about other companies so
please be sure to LIKE this video if you like this video and subscribe to my
channel thank you guys so much for watching bye

About James Carlton

Read All Posts By James Carlton

83 thoughts on “Why to NOT teach English online

  1. Thank you Carli for sharing this information. I’m new to the ESL platform and this was helpful information. Checking out 51Talk now and your video. 😊 Happy Teaching!

  2. Great vid as always! ❤️
    Thanks for touching on the parents hitting the child. Teachers should be prepared!! It's a huge cultural difference and China doesn't have CPS. Don't notify the school to report it, call the police or other authorities in the USA.

  3. Side question: have you finished the TESOL program for ASU?

    I had a good pace but it’s toooo flipping long!! 🤬😡

  4. I love beginning . I get a nice 80s vibe, my favorite era. I teach online too and found everything you said very true. My favorite was number one, you def are there to entertain/babysit some of them. Luckily, I work with adults, but when I did have kids I dealt with this.

  5. Hello Carli, I tried to use your referral code for 51Talk. After the password, the "join us" link button does not work. This is likely holding up your referrals. If you can find an answer for this I will wait until Thursday, May 2. Thanks Carli, your vids are great. Question: How did you make your way to living in Spain. You appear to be American. Thanks.

  6. hello cali ,am not a native English speaker but considering getting into online teaching still making more research but I would like you to mental me hopefully.

  7. Thank you got making this video. I hope you feel better!
    Also, do you know anything about whales English?

  8. she can be a stand-up comedian . she looks like Arsenio Hall https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZyAlaWcPqMw

  9. Just subscribed to your channel 🙂 Really like your videos. I myself am looking into teaching english online so I can go to school in Taiwan. Thanks for this video 🙂

  10. Awesome video Carli! Glad I finally caught up with this. So glad you talked about the random contract changes, this has happened to me at two out of the three companies I have worked with!

  11. Hello Carli I am form PR but raised in Illinois my English is fluent no accent at all, I also speaking fluent Spanish, what type of advantage does this give me in the teaching field, what city do you recommend to begin. Thk you, keep up with your awesome helpful vids.

  12. Hi Carli! I love your videos which have helped me understand the industry so much. Since I am new to this I am taking your advice to try 51Talk. However, I have tried to register on the apply page and I cannot get past the verification code. I have tried on multiple days and it will not let me go past that point. Is there by chance a freeze on hiring new teachers? Thanks so much for your sharing!

  13. Any opportunities or advantages for a native English speaker who also dominates Spanish well or nah? Your videos are very informative thank you!

  14. Thank you so much for posting this video. It was very helpful in answering questions, I had about the job!

  15. Online Language Training companies don't have a clue. I have over 25+ years of TEFL experience and DaDa refused my application ???

  16. You're so helpful and wonderful. I've learned so much so fast. Since my first video of yours cheap online TESL, I have one! Actually two the TESL and the TEFL, both from IOA. Still getting everything together so thank you. You are certainly entertaining, and educational too.

  17. I’ve been watching a lot of videos on teaching online and they have been super helpful but this is the first video that has talked about the big negative things that could happen that you might not expect! Thank you so much for your honesty. As an ESL teaching currently in China I know first hand what it’s like to deal with the consequences of being uninformed because information was withheld! Again. I appreciate the honesty, there’s so many things I wish I would’ve known before moving here though I don’t regret it at all. It’s videos like this I wish I could’ve seen first!

  18. What do you think of iTutorGroup or iTutor? (I think they might be synonymous.) I've submitted my application with them but haven't been interviewed with them yet. Would you recommend me to continue my application with them?

  19. Thank you for sharing! Awesome! While I did not have success with 51TALK, I am glad that it worked out well for you! Continued success!

  20. HI! I just completed the Celta and now I am looking for esl jobs…can you suggest some legit websites with job postings? Not online jobs, I would prefer to travel and work.

  21. Thanks Carli for this great information! I have a request though please? I cannot seem to get a scheduled interview…Can you help with this? Thank you!

  22. I'm just starting my research. This is exactly what I needed to know (especially about a certain company that rhymes with Ambley…) THANK YOU! PS: Can I "like" this twice? I need to like this twice. Maybe three times. I need this.

  23. Hi carli. I tried applying for 51talk so many times but can't get passed the first page. It says my phone number is not in the right format. I even tried writing to the help email on their website. Have you heard of this happening to anyone else?

  24. I've been doing ESL for the last 2 years and I've noticed a definite trend with ESL companies. They're DEF sifting thru employees looking for the best ENTERTAINERS rather than the best Educators.

    One of the HUGE problems with iTutor is if you try to leave real feedback for students, parents will see it and call the company to complain, I had perfect ratings one week, gave honest reviews, and had my account disabled for complaints after the fact, obviously due to the honest reviews.

  25. Hi love! I just went to the 51 talk application link and cant seem to find anywhere to apply. It just sent me to a homepage..

  26. You are so pretty❤ and thanks for all the information especially the discrimination being and black woman that wears the hijab I was wondering if it was worth it, cos I have no patience for that lol

  27. Hi there. Was wondering if you have tips on working for multiple companies as you mention in the video 🙂 TIA xx

  28. Great video. Helped me to get a great perspective on the negative aspects of online teaching. Great job with content. Helped me a lot. Thanks

  29. Hi I purchased a tesol on groupon forn international open Academy pls help how to get started pls,I went on the academy site but am lost pls help

  30. Hi Carly where do you live in Spain just out of interest? Would you say online teaching makes enough money to live in the north of Spain like Barcelona / Madrid?

  31. Hi , would you try our software for online teachers, of course it would be a free copy to you. Our software works with Skype, Facebook live, Youtube live and many more. It allows the student to see an online whiteboard , pdf books etc have a look please www.finncastteacher.com

  32. For anyone that wants to teach english online, there's this new website call MojoChat that allows college students and recent grads to teach english to Chinese college students online. They don't require a degree or teaching qualifications, you can set your own hours and work from anywhere in the world! Here is the link for anyone that's also interested https://mojo.chat/en/apply-as-mentor

  33. I voluntarily left 51talk for paying me less after 2 years…. started working for iTutorGroup for 6 months and was let go without them taking into consideration that 3 of the absences started BEFORE I even started working. Now I NEED a job.

  34. Hey can you point me to the right contact person? I taught for over a year at 51Talk but then let my contract deactivate. Who can help me reactivate my account? Thanks.

  35. Hi Carli, you should consider reading books on tape. Your voice is soothing. Thank you for sharing this information….still considering teaching online.

  36. Thanks for this. I hate being an edutator. I prefer teaching adults but have done interviews for Magic Ears and Vipkid and they both made me want to vomit with the amount of fake cheesy actions I had to do. Its totally insincere and I think, disrespects educated, thoughtful but relaxed and calm teachers who like to use language and not MIMING to teach students. We aren't clowns.

  37. I understand. I have heard of these issue. I am an ESL teacher and you have helped me a lot. Sorry to be not PC but at least for students I think you have you have a great atmosphere and friendly face that should be great to be online. You said otherwise, and I have a clue which countries have a problem with their instructors. Worked over 20 years in this industry and know it all. I want to add that Japanese used to be polite but not very, very aggressive. Good luck for you and I definitely like you!

  38. Oh, and I forgot to mention that it is always true that being an ESL teacher is like being a a stand up comedian. Sometimes it works great, the same not. Depends on the crowd.

  39. i am hearing more and more stories of discrimination from these online esl companies. Its horrific, its good your're raising awareness.

  40. Great video keeping it real. What kind of money can you make reliably working for one company? I am thinking about teaching online but I need to make about $1500 a month.

  41. I have the same problems teaching here is in Spain. When I taught online the biggest problem i had was that the kids didn't want to interact or speak 😐

  42. If you want to learn English of course you need to learn from a native English speaker. I left this video after you started bleating about discrimination. You are an American, living in Spain and enjoying Europe and still find time to complain. Mein gott. smh.

  43. So you’re saying Asia is the opposite of the United States Canada and Australia where if you are a minority race in the west you are given special privileges and advantages kind of sucks to be on the other end of that one huh

  44. good info for newbies i taught 10 years in Asia and the last 2 online in Canada your really hit the mark about Chinese kids they are one extreme to the other, if any of your viewers are planing to teach in Asia avoid the private training schools and only take government school better pay better hours well much better over all Rock on Carli!

  45. I just got my TESOL certificate, I paused the video and went to the international open academy link, paid the $19 and finished everything in 1 hour and 20 minutes. It was ridiculously easy, if you’re thinking about it just go for it!

  46. now I'm just giving a thought should i really have to do the tefl course for this job because it scared shit out of me after hearing this entire video because I'm from india,financially I'll be screwed if i get problems like this with no job security.

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