Teaching With Magic Ears – Pay, Requirements & FAQs


Magic Ears Pay

Magic Ears offers one of the highest online ESL hourly pay rates, up to $26 per hour. The base pay will be between $8 to $10 per 25-min class. Teachers can earn incentive pay that will increase their hourly pay total up to $26/hr (depending on the base pay). This rate is established before you sign your contract and is determined by prior experience and/or interview performance.

Incentives are earned by being early to class, finishing classes on time, and teaching over a certain amount of monthly classes.

Magic Ears Teacher Requirements

  • English speaker with a neutral accent as an American or Canadian
  • Bachelor’s degree in any subject (applicants who are actively pursuing a bachelor’s degree can also apply, but must submit official transcripts)
  • Live, or legally able to work, within the United States or Canada (California residents are not being accepted due to state legal restrictions)
  • Hold a 120-hour ESL Certification*
  • ESL/teaching experience preferred

* If you do not hold a 120-hour ESL certification (i.e. TESOL, TEFL, etc…), Magic Ears offers their own TESOL for an affordable cost that you must be willing to complete before officially being hired.

Magic Ears Tech Requirements

  • Fast and reliable internet (Ethernet cable connection is preferred)
  • Laptop or Computer (either Mac or Windows, not Chromebook compatible)
  • HD webcam (either internal or external)
  • Headset that does a decent job at filtering out background noise

Magic Ears Application Process

  • Fill out the online application
  • Choose your interview demo preference (Live or Recorded)
  • Watch the training videos that pertain to your chosen demo interview preference
  • Schedule/Record your trial demo
  • If you pass, you will need to submit information for a free background check
  • Once it’s complete, you’ll be offered a teaching contract

Frequently Asked Magic Ears Questions

To keep this post free of fluff and filler content, we’ll keep it straight to the point by addressing the most commonly asked Magic Ears questions from Google.

How Long Are Classes?

Each Magic Ears class is 25 minutes in length. Teachers are not allowed to end class before this time. If a class is running slightly longer and the teacher has another class right after, the teacher will need to end the class at an acceptable spot in the curriculum.

Each classroom has a timer that the teacher can see, so pacing is a good idea. This will come more natural in time as you end up teaching more classes.

How Many Students Do You Teach In Each Class?

The Magic Ears classroom has a 1-to-4 (teacher-to-student) structure. Although this structure is different than other popular online ESL platforms, the curriculum ensures that each kid has sufficient interaction with the teacher.

What Time Do You Teach?

Magic Ears classes are taught between the hours of 9pm – 9am Eastern Standard Time (EST). Part-time teachers either work late at night or early in the morning during the weekdays and possibly all-night on the weekends if they choose to do so (and get booked, of course). During the student’s summer months, a full-time schedule could be possible since the children will be out of school during the day.

What Are The Peak Times For Magic Ears?

The peak times are 7:00-9:00 pm on Mondays through Fridays. On Saturday and Sunday, the peak times are 9:00-10:30 am and 7:00-9:00 pm (times are in BJT). Since the students are out of school on the weekends, slots that are open throughout the night have a higher probability of getting booked.

Is There A Minimum Amount Of Teaching Time Required?

Magic Ears recommends teachers to open at least 10 hours per week (20 slots), but there is not a required minimum. However, the more slots that a teacher opens, the higher the fill-rate possibility.

What If I Need To Cancel A Class?

Magic Ears allows four free cancellations each month. If a teacher uses all four cancellations, they can essentially exchange their “Peak Carrots” earned by opening slots, to close the slot.

Does Magic Ears Offer A Short-Notice Booking Option?

After you’ve taught 10 classes, you will be eligible to apply for what they call “standby” classes. A standby class can be picked up when a fellow teacher has to cancel their class(es) within a 24-hour window of the scheduled time slot.

If a teacher is a no-show, the class becomes immediately available for standby teachers to pick up and teach. This would mean that standby teachers need to be ready to pick up a class within minutes before the class would actually start.

What If I’m Late To Class?

Due to the structure of the 1-to-4 teacher-to-student ratio, and the “assigned” students-to-teacher setup, Magic Ears is very strict on the time that a teacher has to arrive in the classroom. If the teacher does not enter the classroom two minutes before the scheduled start time, the class will be transferred to the first available standby teacher.

For consecutive classes, the class will be transferred after only 15 seconds.

What If I Have Tech Issues Before Or During A Class?

Teacher tech issues will result in an immediate transfer if they occur at the beginning of class.

Do You Need To Speak Chinese To Teach With Magic Ears?

No, you do not need to speak or understand Chinese. The classroom structure is based on the full English immersion method. This method is very effective and the curriculum is set up for the teacher so that the language barrier is not an issue.

Do You Need To Create Your Own Lesson Plans?

There is no need to create your own lesson plans, Magic Ears provides them for their teachers. It is important, however, that you do familiarize yourself with the various lessons and how the classroom tech works. Even though you have no lessons to create or plan, it would make sense to know the basics of the prepared lessons so that the class can go smoothly.

Do Teachers Communicate With The Student’s Parents?

No, Magic Ears teachers do not communicate directly with their student’s parents. The company handles this. They will occasionally inform teachers of parent’s feedback in order to assist teacher performance. You will be able to see ratings from your students’ parents in the teacher portal.

How Long Is The Magic Ears Hiring Process?

Between each step, expect two business days as the processing time-frame. Depending on the time of year and the number of applicants, it may take as little as a day, or as long as 3-4 business days between each step.

Can I Check For An Update On My Application?

Yes, you will be sent updates via the email that you applied with. If you haven’t heard anything after 2-3 business days, feel free to log into the teacher portal on the website and contact their support (you’ll be provided with login credentials when you start the process).

How Long Is The Teaching Contract?

Magic Ears offers a 6-month teaching contract. There is no minimum of classes required to be taught during this time frame. Once your contract nears expiration, you’ll receive a performance review to determine whether or not a new contract will be offered to you.

How Often Do They Pay?

Magic Ears pays their teachers once a month. This payment is the income that was earned in the previous month. The payment date falls on the 10th of the month. As an example, teachers will receive their March income on the 10th of April.

Unlike other popular online ESL companies, teachers must also sign a payslip before payment can be issued.

Payslips are released by the 3rd of each month.

For teachers to get paid on time, they must sign and submit their payslip by the 8th of the same month. Even if their payment is being combined with a prior month’s earnings.*

How Do They Pay Their Teachers?

Magic Ears will send a teacher’s earnings via direct deposit. However, if the income total is between $51-$100, the payment can only be sent via PayPal. If a teacher does not have a PayPal account, the earnings will carry over to the next month that the $100 threshold is met.

* Unfortunately, Magic Ears does not send out payments that fall below $50. If a teacher does not earn more than $50 in a single month, their earnings will carry over to the next month that the $50 threshold is met.

Do They Give Raises?

Magic Ears may offer a raise when it is time for a teacher’s contract to renew. This will be based on the overall performance of the teacher’s prior contract period. There is also a limit to pay raises once a certain pay threshold has been met.

How Do They Handle Taxes?

You will have to handle your own taxes when teaching for Magic Ears. Teachers are considered independent contractors, not employees. This means that you will be solely responsible for setting aside and paying the appropriate amount of taxes for your state/country.

Is Magic Ears Legit?

Yes, Magic Ears is 100% legit. It is a popular online ESL platform where thousands of teachers earn an income. There are other platforms that may seem a little shady, but Magic Ears is not one of them.

How Does Magic Ears Differ From VIPKid And GoGoKid?

VIPKid and GoGoKid have a 1-to-1 teacher-to-student ratio while Magic Ears has a 1-to-4 teacher-to-student ratio.

Another big difference is that VIPKid and GoGoKid allow the students/parents to choose their own teachers while Magic Ears will assign students to the teacher.

For Magic Ears, parents only book the class and the system itself will assign them to an available teacher.

Here are the links to the differences between each platform’s pay. – how much VIPKid pays teachers and how much GoGoKid pays teachers.

How Do I Prepare For The Interview?

Magic Ears offers a highly detailed course that you can take part in for free. Here’s the link that’ll open in a new tab – Free Magic Ears Training Course.

Teacher Chelsey

I am an online English teacher for VIPKID, a powerhouse resource for teachers, a kick-butt wife, and a mom to ten super spoiled fur-babies. Some articles are written by me, others are written by my husband... but approved by me. LOL ;)

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