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10 High-Impact Strategies & 'How To' Guides, Daily Planning Guide, & Deficit vs. Asset-Based Language in Math Chart

Hi, I’m Chrissy Allison.

Truth Teller.
Beach Lover.
Pizza Aficionado.
Symmetry Seeker.
I’ve always loved teaching -- and chalkboards. I got early practice teaching my sisters and stuffed animals. I tutored friends in high school and fellow education students in college. Finally, I became a middle school teacher and had the opportunity to teach REAL LIVE students -- using a chalkboard!
In high school, I was a bit of a rebel. I smoked in the teachers’ lounge during detention, organized a true ‘senior skip day’ when my high school tried to schedule one FOR us, and led the charge to restore the minimum GPA for National Honors Society after admin changed it in our senior year… only to have them REJECT my application after my mother made me apply. 
Later in my career I became an Instructional Coach and Math Specialist where I coached teachers, led professional learning, and managed a team. We started a tradition celebrating Pi Day at Piece Pizza here in Chicago. Luckily, my family loves pizza enough to help carry on the tradition every March 14.
In 2011, I boldly emailed my (now) husband, Dan, out of NOWHERE after my mom reminded me what a “nice boy Dan Allison is.” I’ve known Dan since I was 4 years old when we vacationed together as children. Fast forward a few years and we’re now married with two children, Liviana (my mini-me) and Otto (our fearless wonder). 
In recent years, I’ve dug into my own
personal growth and transformation as I strive to find alignment and joy as a working mom. Some areas of focus: Antiracism, Spirituality, Meditation, Social-emotional Learning, Energy, and Manifestation. I meditate a lot these days, and the kids join in, too.

After leaving the school setting, I worked at two educational nonprofits for over 5 years. I had the opportunity to both share and deepen my knowledge about strong math instruction and educational equity by connecting with experts in the field.

In this season of my career I got clear about my intrinsic value, beyond achievements and titles. I learned how to manage my mindset, advocate for myself, and (ultimately) how to get aligned with my desires, my purpose, and the universe. 
In May 2019, I followed my intuition by enrolling in an online course for entrepreneurs (which I wasn't... yet!). 
I published the first episode of The Mindful Math Podcast a year later. 

Within those 12 months, I created a vision for the Mindful Math Coach brand, quit my 9-5 job, stayed at home with my family, and gained Dan as my one-and-only co-worker when he was laid off due to COVID-19.
The recent killings of innocent black lives has been a tragic reminder that systemic racism exists in our country, and is a catalyst for me to do more, both in terms of learning and action, to be an antiracist.

It's also the reason I've decided to clarify the core purpose of Mindful Math Coach, which is to support secondary educators to provide equitable learning experiences and outcomes for children of color.

About Symmetry Circle

Chrissy Allison is the founder and CEO of Symmetry Circle LLC, an organization that brings together strong content, expert coaching, and an invested community to provide leadership and support to individuals during transformational learning experiences. Symmetry Circle’s mission is to increase consciousness, compassion, connection, understanding, fulfillment, joy, and equity in our world by strengthening our knowledge, skill, and action in the areas of antiracism, consciousness, and emotional intelligence.

Sharing our learning, growth, and mistakes in an open and vulnerable way is one way we hope to take responsibility and begin to heal, bring hope to black, indigenous, and people of color who are rightly hurt, angry, and exhausted by the inequities that exist and disproportionately affect them, and finally to inform, motivate, and inspire action from white Americans whose responsibility it is to dismantle the current systems of oppression and injustice that exist in our country.

Chrissy’s husband, Dan, became the second member of the Symmetry Circle team when he was laid off as a result of the financial impacts of COVID-19. He joined her in laying the foundation for the Mindful Math Coach brand by producing The Mindful Math Podcast, building this (beautiful) website, and being a sounding board for all of Chrissy’s ideas. So far, his proudest moment was when he learned how to embed a podcast player on our webpage, earning him the nickname ‘Custom Java Script Master.’

About Mindful Math Coach

Chrissy launched Mindful Math Coach due to her vast experience as a math educator. As a former middle school math teacher and instructional coach, Chrissy knows the challenges educators face, especially when working with students who have significant amounts of unfinished learning.

Mindful Math Coach’s core purpose is to support secondary math educators to provide equitable learning experiences for students of color, leading to equitable outcomes. Through free resources such as The Mindful Math Podcast, videos, and guides, educators will gain access to information, tips, and examples to implement in their classrooms.

Additionally, through paid opportunities such as online courses that bring together strong content, expert coaching, and an invested community, educators will gain knowledge and skills to:
  • build a strong classroom community, including increasing student confidence and engagement
  • ​use strong and equitable instructional practices to deepen mathematical understanding
  • ensure all students have access to grade level content, including students with unfinished learning

Chrissy’s Professional Bio

Chrissy grew up in Wisconsin, Colorado, and Seoul, South Korea. She earned a B.S. in Elementary Education, minoring in mathematics from Carroll University, graduating Magna Cum Laude. After college, Chrissy moved to Chicago as part of a volunteer teaching program called Inner-City Teaching Corps (ICTC) where she lived in community with eight other novice teachers during their first two years of teaching. She received a M.S. from Northwestern University in Elementary Education, completing an action research project on Assessment to Improve Instruction and Learning as part of her Masters thesis.

After six years in the classroom, Chrissy became an instructional leader where she coached middle school teachers for an additional six years. She led the math team to increase the school’s summative assessment scores as measured by the Illinois Standardized Assessment Test (ISAT) from 51% to 79% within three years. In 2012, she successfully managed and supported the school’s transition to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in Math. 

Next, Chrissy took a role as Director of Math Professional Learning at the Achievement Network where she created a catalog of over 30 math professional learning sessions, facilitated sessions for ANet partner schools as well as national conferences such as the National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics (NCSM) and Student Achievement Partner’s Leading the Core Conference. She led the organization’s approach to math curriculum implementation support and analyzing and responding to student data. In 2019, Chrissy stepped into the Director of Math Content Design at Teaching Lab where she helped build and lead the design team for one year.

Chrissy’s experiences in the classroom, as a coach, and leading professional development at the national level, coupled with her strong interpersonal skills, puts her in a unique position to both support and motivate educators while giving straightforward, constructive feedback. Chrissy resides in Chicago with her husband, Dan, and two children, Liviana and Otto.