MagicEars is a mostly DORMANT site that used to enlist teachers to instruct Chinese kids in English.
Expected pay: NA
Commissions & fees: NA
Magic Ears Review – Updated 1/20/2023:
Magic Ears was once a dominant player in teaching English to Chinese kids. But the Chinese government made tutoring sites like these illegal in late 2021. These sites remain online. But are largely dormant.
Our belief is that the sites are maintaining an online presence in the hope that China will reverse its stance. We lave left this review live for a different reason. There is a huge amount of dated information on the web that makes it look as if these teaching platforms are still operating. As of early 2023, they’re still taking applications but it appears that there’s almost no work. So we want you to know not to bother applying for these positions.
In the event the site revives, the explanation below is how the site worked. However, until and unless China changes its policies, skip ahead to “recommendations” to see where you can teach English today.
How it used to work
When MagicEars was operating it expected teachers to work from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Beijing time during the work week, and between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. (Beijing time) on weekends.
Beijing is roughly 12 hours ahead of New York time, so U.S. teachers are often working in the wee hours of the morning or late at night. For those who liked that schedule, Magic Ears paid a bit better than the other Chinese-based English-learning sites.
Specifically, when it was operating Magic Ears paid $9 to $11 per half hour in base pay and offered $1 hourly bonuses for showing up a few minutes early and for teaching at peak times. There was also a less well-defined “performance bonus.”
Teachers said that MagicEars’ was more hands-on, providing more advice about your teaching style. (The curriculum is set. What you add is personality and props.) That’s something teachers either loved or hated.
The site also would pay you to refer additional qualified teachers to Magic Ears at a rate of $10 per resume.
What their teachers said: (From Glassdoor)
I have been with ME for 8 months now and they are nothing short of phenomenal to work for. They not only care about the students but they truly care about their teachers. They put so much work into listening to us and to making us better teachers and are always reachable, pleasant and respectful. You are not penalized for being sick!
I absolutely love working for Magic Ears! They are friendly, accommodating, helpful, fair and kind. The company provides helpful feedback and pays great! They have a very diverse teacher pool.
There was one time that I had to take care of my daughter and had to cancel my classes that day last minute, MagicEars staff was super supportive and gave out all my classes WITHOUT ANY PENALTY or even a word of blaming. Being a single mom with 2 kids, it really meant a lot to me.
They want you to be in the classroom 10 minutes early as part of the bonus. This is not just part of the bonus, it is an expectation. If you are not there 10 minutes early (I could only be 5 min early because of teaching classes with my other company), they will blow up your phone. You must be on camera at least 30 seconds early as well.
Competitive pay. Diligent feedback. Great online portal. Friendly staff. Particular about details, will point out even little areas you need to improve. The hiring process takes a while, but again they are working to be the best and they want to make sure you will fit well with the company.
You will not have a chance to teach if you are a person of color, country, cowboy-ish or other ethnic looking people, or with “slight accent” that Management classifies as a non native or neutral speaking.