One of the things that I worried about when I first started with VIPKID was the cost of props and knowing which props I would need for various classes. I didn't want to funnel everything I made right back into props or spend hours on end prepping for classes. I wish someone had told me not to stress so much right from the beginning, props can be free/cheap and a quick flip through the slide deck and 9 times out of 10 I'm ready to teach.
On the props front you can DIY or gather items you already have in your home and be good to go (any of your older students will appreciate realia and the little ones will appreciate your enthusiasm more than almost any amazing/costly prop). Once you start teaching and you try out a few ideas you'll have a feel for what kinds of things will work for your students and then can decide if you want to spend a little more money on those puzzles, the letter puppet or (insert cool prop here). To be an effective teacher you only need a few basic props, nothing fancy and definitely nothing expensive. The only props I had for the first month or so of teaching were:
The white board is extremely versatile and I could get by without much else with most of my students if I really needed to. Ideally though, you'll use 3-5 props in each 25 minute lesson. Don't over use props or you will loose sight of the lesson topic but you want the class to be interesting to the little ones you work with... its about balance.
After the first month or so I added a few more rewards charts and my popsicle stick collection followed by several of my dollar tree finds like small balls, dry erase cubes and the magnifying glass. I find that else is just gravy... not necessary but makes class time a little easier and more fun. I spent $50 max for everything I use in my classroom outside of the ink for printing... to be honest I don't remember how much I spent on that (oops). That includes all my decor, the props, rewards charts, and a small laminator.
Take a look the props I have in my current classroom in the video below.
I hope you find this helpful on your VIPKID journey. Feel free to ask questions, send suggestions and etc. for future posts.
What would you add to my collection of props?
My referral code is: HEATH0116