Jeanine Brownell, M.S.

Assistant Director of Programming

Jeanine O’Nan Brownell works with Erikson’s Early Math Collaborative. She is an early childhood teacher with experience in preschool to third-grade classrooms, and has worked as a mentor to new teachers, an instructional coach, and an author of early mathematics curriculum. Currently she is working with the Chicago Public Schools Department of Mathematics to develop a district-wide program of professional learning for PreK-5th Grade Teacher Leaders. She earned her master’s degree at Erikson Institute.


M.S. Child Development, Erikson Institute

Research Presentations

  • Brownell, J.

    , Lopez, G. (2015, March). Chicago P12 math collaborative: Partnerships for high-quality mathematics instruction. Poster presentation at the meeting of the Carnegie Foundation Summit on Improvement in Education, San Francisco, CA.

    Carnegie Foundation Summit on Improvement in Education Read More


    Chicago Public Schools has created innovative partnerships with universities and funders in a district-wide initiative to improve P-12 mathematics instruction. This multi-year initiative aims to develop the capacity of teacher leaders, school and network administrators, and district math staff to affect sustainable change at a large scale.

  • Brownell, J., Cerezci, B., Reid, E. E.

     (2015, April). High impact strategies for early mathematics: A lesson observation tool. Presentation at the annual meeting of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Boston, MA.

    National Council of Teachers of Mathematics
  • Cerezci, B., Brownell, J., Chen, J-Q., McCray, J.

     (2013, April). HIS-EM: Examining quality mathematics teaching in early childhood classrooms. Poster session presented at the annual meeting of the Loyola University Interdisciplinary Research Symposium for Graduate School Students, Chicago, IL.

    Loyola University Interdisciplinary Research Symposium for Graduate School Students Read More


    High quality education in math for young children builds a strong foundation for future mathematics learning. Evidence is clear that early mathematics achievement is associated with later school success, but the field lacks clear definition of excellence in early mathematics teaching. We are also short of available tools to assist teachers and teacher educators in monitoring or assessing classrooms around mathematics teaching. The purpose of this poster was to introduce High Impact Strategies in Early Mathematics, (HIS-EM), an observational tool designed to identify and measure the frequency of high quality mathematics teaching practices in preschool through third grade and to report its early findings.

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Teacher Education Presentations

  • Itzkowich, R., Brownell, J.

    (2017). Using a Protocol for Looking At Student Work with Primary Teachers. Presentation at the National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics (NCSM) Annual Conference.

    National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics
  • McCray, J., Brownell, J., Hynes-Berry, M.

    (2016). Building math with big ideas. Presentation at the National Association of the Education of Young Children Annual Conference, Los Angeles, CA.

    National Association for the Education of Young Children Read More


    The Big Ideas of early math are not maxims to be memorized and repeated by young children; instead, they are the key understandings that teachers of young children should emphasize as they support preschool learning experiences. When teachers have a deep, connected understanding of these Big Ideas, they are prepared to plan for and respond to children’s activities and learning in ways that clarify thinking and emphasize the kinds of knowledge that are generative of later, elementary level math ideas. Our team has identified three Big Ideas related to number sense: 1) The quantity of a small set can be perceived intuitively without counting; 2) Quantity is an attribute of a set of objects and we use numbers to name specific quantities; and 3) Numbers are used in many ways, some more mathematical than others. The first idea, that the quantity of a small set can be intuitively perceived, without counting, helps teachers see the power of subitizing and visual number sense for helping children understand number. The second idea, that number is a way of describing the amount of a set, goes to the purpose of numbers, a topic that is often over-looked in the early childhood curriculum. The third idea, that numbers are used in many ways, reminds teachers that not all examples of numbers carry an equal amount of explanatory information. These ideas will each be fully explored, with multiple examples.

  • Brownell, J.

     (2015, July). Growing Math in Your School Garden. Presentation at Chicago Public Schools’ Ready, Set, Teach! Summer Institute, Chicago, IL.

  • Brownell, J.

    , Castro, V., Morgan, K. (2014, July). Making the most of CPS K-2 math block. Presentation at Chicago Public Schools’ Ready, Set, Teach! Summer Institute, Chicago, IL.

  • Brownell, J.

     (2013, July). The Early Math Collaborative at Erikson: Supporting teachers to improve practice. Paper presented at the CME Group Foundation Early Math Education Conference, Chicago, IL.

    CME Group Foundation Early Math Education Conference
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