There are currently over 40 VIPKid certifications available, but VIPKid Level 2 is where most teachers begin their VIPKid teaching journey. Knowing how to teach this level effectively is so important because this is where many students start their English-speaking journey!
While some students will start at VIPKid Level 1, most will begin with Level 2. Therefore, it’s a safe assumption that these students are in the earliest stages of learning English.
As a VIPKid Level 2 teacher, most of your students are going to be between the ages of 5-10. But, there will definitely be outliers, both young and old, who participate in Level 2 interactive classes. Generally speaking, prepare for students within the elementary age group when teaching this level.
So, we’re going to look at what you should expect, topics are covered in Level 2, some best practices for teaching this beginning level, and which props are most helpful.
How to Teach VIPKid Level 2
Be Familiar With All of the Unit Topics
In VIPKid Level 2 Interactive (MC) Lessons, there are 144 lessons [12 total units x 12 lessons per unit]. Each unit is divided into two sections with each section having a specific focus. The first half of each unit has 5 lessons before the lesson 6 assessment. The second half has 5 additional lessons before the lesson 12 final assessment.
In VIPKid Level 2 (NMC) Lessons, there are 90 lessons [9 total units x 10 lessons per unit]. Each unit is divided into two sections with each section having a unique focus. The first half of each unit has 4 lessons before the lesson 5 assessment. The second half has 4 additional lessons before the final assessment in lesson 10.
Major Course (MC)
- Unit 1– Intro of basic words, emotions, day
- Unit 2– VIPKid classroom tech, school vocab
- Unit 3– Intro to pronouns, school, more / fewer
- Unit 4– Family, home, equal or not equal
- Unit 5– Friends, toys, activities, plus / minus
- Unit 6– Shapes, foods, food words
- Unit 7– Body parts, emotions, sizes
- Unit 8– Colors, comparative words
- Unit 9– Neighborhood, shapes, transportation
- Unit 10– Animals, habitats
- Unit 11– Weather, weight measurement
- Unit 12– Britain, unit review
New Major Course (NMC)
- Unit 1– VIPKid classroom tech, school vocab
- Unit 2– Intro to pronouns, school, more / fewer
- Unit 3– Family, home, equal or not equal
- Unit 4– Friends, toys, activities, plus / minus
- Unit 5– Shapes, foods, food words
- Unit 6– Neighborhood, shapes, transportation
- Unit 7– Animals, habitats
- Unit 8– Weather, weight measurement
- Unit 9– Britain, unit review
Set Appropriate Expectations
Remember, you need to set appropriate expectations before you ever log into your first class. And, since many of your students have never learned English from a native speaker before, you should keep three specific things in mind.
1. Your students need lots of TPR & minimal incidental language
TPR, or Total Physical Response, is essential in every grade. But for this level, it is particularly essential because TPR helps them understand what you want them to do even when they don’t understand your words.
Incidental language, or the use of “filler” words that don’t add meaning or context to the conversation, should be kept to a minimum. This helps the students hear only the most relevant vocabulary that we want them to repeat or hear spoken.
The less you say, and the more body language you use, the better. This reduces the amount of stress and anxiety your young students feel in the classroom.
2. Expect a lot of parroting with beginners
Parroting, which is a word used to refer to a student simply repeating everything you say, is characteristic of kids in the first few units of VIPKid Interactive Level 2.
They are getting used to listening and repeating. This isn’t a bad thing, but it can get frustrating when you want them to answer a question.
A good way to help your student understand that you are expecting an answer to your question (not just a repeated question) is to use character props or stuffed animals. You can have one animal “ask” the other a question and the other will then respond accordingly.
This is modeling the expectation for your student with TPR and without excessive incidental language.
3. Prepare for one word answers initially
In VIPKid Interactive Level 2, students will move past parroting and typically generate one-word answers. This is definitely a step in the right direction.
If they understand the question enough to give any type of response, they are making progress. However, as your students work through the units and get closer to Level 3, they will be expected to speak in complete sentences.
Best Practices in VIPKid Level 2
As beginners, these students really benefit from flashcards. The best flashcards for your VIPKid classroom are minimal in design. This HUGE bundle of flashcards for VIPKid Interactive Level 2 is designed minimally with only one word and one image per vocabulary card.
This layout makes it easy for the student to take a mental “picture” of the word & image while imprinting the information into their memory.
While vocabulary words make up the bulk of the content within this flashcard set, it also includes sight words, grammar, and math information that align with the topics covered in each unit. Level & unit numbers are written on every card to make planning and clean up a breeze.
Teach the Sight Words
There are about 5 sight words introduced in each Level 2 VIPKid unit. These will be revisited over and over again throughout the unit. They will also be used over and over throughout subsequent lessons.
It is really important that your student recognizes these words because they are frequently occurring words in the English language. Therefore we call them HFW, or high frequency words.
Help Your Students Learn the Letters and Individual Sounds
Making sure that your students know each letter in uppercase and lowercase form is important to their future reading success! And, that’s why so much time is spent reviewing and practicing these letters in VIPKid Interactive Level 2 lessons.
If they don’t get a firm grasp on letters and sounds at this foundational level, English will be more and more difficult for them to master. So, be sure to pay careful attention to pronunciation and mouth shape, as these two things are pivotal components of correct speaking.
Teach VIPKid Phonics
Once your students have moved through the individual sounds, they will quickly move into word endings and ultimately blends. At this level, your students will spend time in almost EVERY lesson working on these particular skills.
Make sure that you listen carefully when students are practicing word endings and blends with /e/ and /i/ because these are the two that sound the most similar and the ones that your students will probably confuse.
It’s so important for teachers to point out the differences early so that when students encounter multisyllabic words later they’ll be able to break those words down easily.
Model, Model, Model
If you do nothing else in your VIPKid Level 2 Interactive lessons, make sure you model. Modeling is simply another word for the phrase “I do. We do. You do.”
In other words, you need to make sure that you show your student what he needs to do. This may come in the form of repeating, answering a question, or performing a task. But, for your student to understand his role, he has to see you do it first.
After you have modeled the skill you want your student to do, the next step is to allow her to have a part in the learning process. This is the “we do” part of learning, and at this point, you help your student. Finally, you allow them to try the skill on their own without your help. This is the “you do” part of learning.
Best Props for VIPKid Level 2
While there are all kinds of different props that you can use when teaching VIPKid Level 2 interactive lessons, these are by far my favorites…and the ones I use in EVERY lesson.
1. Alphabet Flashcards
There are several different props you can use to teach letters and sounds, but I’ve found that simple alphabet flashcards work the best for me.
When I first started teaching with VIPKid, I tried using magnetic letters. But I quickly found them (as well as most of my other 3D props) to be too much trouble and take up way too much space.
So, this cheap set of alphabet flashcards has been my go to for teaching letters and sounds ever since.
2. Level 2 Flashcards
When I moved away from using 3D props and started using 2D props exclusively, I discovered that I needed props for all of the levels I taught. So, I spent weeks and weeks creating comprehensive sets of flashcards for each specific level.
This Level 2 bundle of flashcards contains over 850 flashcards including vocabulary, sight words, alphabet (uppercase & lowercase), grammar, and math as well as sentence frames for the MC and NMC lessons.
3. Find A Star Reward System
I use the Find-A-Star Reward System in every class I teach because it’s so simple to implement. I have printed board from all 3 sets so that I have 120 different reward boards to choose from each day. Instead of being bored with the same reward, my regular students get a new board in every lesson. And, this keeps them from remembering the location of the stars.
To teach VIPKid Level 2 Interactive lessons, you want to use simple props and TPR to help your beginning learners. You want to focus on the foundational skills of letter recognition, sound recognition, and sight word memorization by using the “I do. We do. You do.” modeling technique.
Implementing these best practices will help you become a more effective VIPKid teacher and will allow you to earn more 5 apple ratings.