April K.

April Koch

Individualized Support in Science & Mathematics

Chapel Hill, NC

56.00 /HR
SAT BIOLOGY MATHEMATICS (GEOMETRY) MATHEMATICS (ALGEBRA) ACT CHEMISTRY COMMON CORE MATHEMATICS EARTH SCIENCE PHYSICS CALCULUS ANATOMY & PHYSIOLOGY MATHEMATICS (PRE-ALGEBRA) MATHEMATICS (TRIGONOMETRY) MATHEMATICS (LINEAR ALGEBRA) PHYSIOLOGY PRE-CALCULUS MATHEMATICS (7-8) MICROSOFT SOFTWARE SAT II (MATH LEVEL I) SAT II (MATH LEVEL II)

Expertise

I began tutoring high school math and science in Wilmington, Delaware in 2007. At that time I also broke into the world of environmental education at Delaware Nature Society, teaching young students about wild animals and the natural world. I learned more about adolescent development, learning challenges, teaching methods, and curriculum design during my Master's in Education program at the University of Delaware.

Teaching high school for 2 years in Delaware and North Carolina exposed me to the practical challenges that both students and teachers face in the classroom. My lesson-planning skills grew immensely during my work for Education Portal, designing and recording engaging video lessons for college students. I gained training and experience with the SAT and ACT during my time with local test prep companies.

I bring all of these experiences to the table when I meet with my students: focusing on the big picture of education, the details of the content, and of course the specific needs of the student.

Teaching Methods

My teaching methods are tailored to the needs and goals of each student, the structure of his or her course, the materials provided, and the time frame we have available to make improvements. Some students want to attack their most important questions, gain deep understanding of the material, and earn an A. Some, hoping simply to pass their class, need help wading through the jumbled notes and worksheets that have accumulated all year. In any case, I communicate with each student to understand the best ways I can help to reach his or her goals.

Sometimes I focus on only parts of concepts, or hand-picked homework problems, as needed by the student. Other times I must go back and start from scratch, teaching major concepts as though for the first time. Whenever possible, I utilize my students' textbooks, worksheets, and class notes in order to understand the intentions of the teacher and the material that is being stressed in the course. I have found such vast differences in course structure and content across these 3 North Carolina counties! But my long-term objective is to help my students see how they can help themselves move out of their stuck spots. I constantly use the textbook index, point out helpful parts of their class notes, and write directly on my students' work to help them see when the answers are already there.

I do not ever allow myself to "contaminate the brain" with extra information, alternative methods, or backpedaling instruction. If my student learns a process different from my own, I simply clarify that it works and move on, especially if my student is comfortable with it. While I do enhance the learning experience with anecdotes and examples wherever helpful, I always bring myself back to the fact that my students are learning information for the first time. I know when to decide that "less is more"!

I bring to every session a notebook, a calculator, writing utensils and a miniature stapler, in case we need to organize. For my AP kids and students whose schools do not provide textbooks, I bring my own surrogate prep books and textbooks full of useful formulas and definitions. I often utilize my own Chromebook or my students’ laptops in cases where they must research for a project, or when the visuals in their limited resources do not adequately illustrate key concepts.

Education

  • Master of Education from University of Delaware in Curriculum & Instruction in 2009
  • Bachelor of Science from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in Biology in 2004

Professional History

  • Tutor/Instructor at Mindspire Tutoring & Test Prep in Durham, NC from 2014 - Present
  • Tutor/Instructor at The Princeton Review in Durham, NC from 2013 - 2014
  • Science, Math, and Test Prep Tutor at WyzAnt Tutoring in Chapel Hill, NC from 2013 - Present
  • Online Instructor & Course Developer at Remilon, LLC in Online/ Mountain View, CA from 2012 - 2013
  • Science Teacher at Lucy Ragsdale High School in Jamestown, NC from 2010 - 2011
  • Teacher of Biology & Agriculture at Woodbridge High School in Bridgeville, DE from 2009 - 2010
  • Summer Camp Instructor/ Teacher Naturalist at Delaware Nature Society in Hockessin, DE from 2007 - 2011
  • Education Intern/ Teacher Naturalist at Delaware Nature Society in Hockessin, DE from 2007 - 2007

About Me

I am a science and math tutor in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Originally from Newark, Delaware, I came down to UNC to study biology, then went back to U of D to study physical therapy and earn my Master’s in education. I taught high school for a couple of years before realizing that tutoring was more my style. My gift as a tutor is my ability to meet my students at their level, no matter where it is, and to encourage them forward at their own unique pace. I mostly tutor high school students in math and science, but I have tutored a few local college students in physics and organic chemistry.

I live in Tar Heel town with my husband, two cats, and two wild starlings which I raised myself. My husband and I love exploring the natural world: birdwatching, hiking, collecting seashells at Emerald Isle… and it’s always fun to dip back into my biology studies that way! I like Disney, Anime, video games, and superhero movies. My friends say I’m just a kid at heart. :)

But it doesn’t mean I can’t buckle down when things get serious in my tutoring. I have dragged my students through the muddiest swamps of AP Chemistry; I have braved the raging seas of a textbook-less PreCalc curriculum. I don’t give up on my students. But I do know how to work with their varying levels of patience, whether or not AD/HD is an issue. I believe in small gains, I believe that students learn best when they are allowed to think through problems in their own way. I refrain from adhering to specific teaching methods because I know that my students need individualized support. My job is to discover what that support should look like, and tutor each student accordingly.

References (3)

Jane P.

11:33 AM 19/Jun/15

Relationship: Parent

April tutored my daughter once-a-week for two years, first in pre-Calculus and then in Calculus (AP). She also provided general support and organization help, and strategies for taking ACT and SAT tests. April was wonderful in every sense of the word--able to connect with a frustrated teen ager, trying various techniques to get points across, working directly with teachers to know about assignments and expectations ahead of time. April recently attended my daughter's high school graduation, for which she deserves much credit. My daughter will be going to college within the area, and will continue to work with April as needed. I can't recommend April highly enough.

Ali P.

19:40 PM 17/Jun/15

Relationship: Student

April is a great tutor and I highly recommend her. She tutored me in chem 101 and 102 and I really liked how she was able to teach me new ways of figuring out problems without confusing what my teacher had already taught me. She adapted each session to what I needed, using her own materials to help teach me concepts at times and other times looking over materials from class. Also, she seems to genuinely enjoy chemistry and is super knowledgeable about science in general. If you need a tutor, April's a great one!

Tina W.

16:01 PM 16/Jun/15

Relationship: Parent

April has been a tremendous asset to the educational goals of my daughter. My daughter is homeschooled and requires extra assistance in English, Science and Math. April has been tutoring my daughter for over 2 years now. Not only is she reliable, punctual, motivating and SMART; she teaches organizational skills and accountability. I would highly recommend April to any parent looking for a non-complicated, rewarding, tutoring experience.