Constructing The Universe

Classes for Youngsters
Ages 8-10 and 11-13

Hands-On Learning in Math, Science, Nature and Art

"All who have meditated on the art of governing mankind have been convinced
that the fate of empires depends on the education of youth."
-- Aristotle

Michael S. Schneider
M.Ed. Mathematics and Science Education
Author of
"A Beginner's Guide To Constructing The Universe
The Mathematical Archetypes of Nature, Science and Art"
(HarperPerennial 1995)
six Constructing The Universe Activity Books


 255 Sir Francis Drake Blvd.
(in the parking lot at the west end of Bank Street,
and near the "Hub")

San Anselmo, CA 94960


Interactive Map

More precise in Google Earth:
37°58'30.85" N, 122°33'43.50" W

A youngster's interest in the usual school topics is transitory unless it's seen as part of something interesting and meaningful. My approach to teaching is that the seemingly separate topics of learning, especially involving nature, mathematics, science, history and art are all interrelated facets of one whole, and that all topics can be taught through any topic. Many bright youngsters are bored in their classes, or have interests beyond the school curriculum. This Constructing The Universe classroom is for them.

These classes are not "tutoring" sessions for the usual school topics although they often involve the same skills used in the context of a creative investigation. Young people can learn to see and appreciate the excellence of nature and its patterns which teaches many valuable lessons. I approach each subject to promote wonder at the ordinary, the interconnectedness of knowledge and a love of learning in general.

The Constructing The Universe classroom is a relaxed, learner-friendly creative atmosphere where youngsters (mostly ages 8-13) can participate in the interrelationship of geometry, numbers, art, nature and the natural sciences with fun and confidence. After many years and situations teaching I see that a little intelligent guidance can help ignite a big interest in learning (even if they're not considered good math, science or art students). For the past few years I've been teaching homeschoolers and occasionally other groups of children who benefit from these topics and approach to learning. Classes are 90 minutes in length and are generally limited to eight students (and fewer for certain topics like electronics). They're offered in 12-week blocks at a cost of $300 (i.e., $25/class). Parents are welcome to stay and observe, and help if you like.

"Come into the light of things.
Let nature be your teacher."
-- Wordsworth

Classes for Youngsters

Classes are offered from September through April.

To be included on the email list about classes beginning September 2012 please write.

Classes are very limited in number and size (limited to 8 students) and fill very quickly.

Here are a few photos taken at the Constructing The Universe classroom.

Here Are Some Class Topics:


Turn Geometric Constructions Into Art

All students first go through a series of classes learning to do the geometric constructions associated with the numbers 1 through 12, from point and circle through dodecahedron. The goal is for students to become comfortable using a compass and straight edge and get really good at creating geometric constructions! These reveal interesting and beautiful patterns which students turn into art using colored pencils, paint, clay, sequins, feathers and whatever else is around! No experience is necessary. Beginners are especially welcome. This topic is an extensive part of Constructing The Universe classes. Included along the way are related topics described below.


Plant Architecture (Learn Math from Plants!)

Learn about the Fibonacci numbers and the Golden Ratio by examining (and building and transforming) nature's excellent plant architecture.

Build Three-Dimensional Geometry

Hands-on experiments building the five Platonic Solids, crystals, bubbles, puzzles, make pop-up books, and more.


 Learn To Draw Tessellation Patterns

... repeating tile patterns that don't leave gaps or overlap, as seen in the art of M.C. Escher.


 Games, Patterns and Puzzles

... mostly from ancient times and those with numerical and geometric strategies.


 Making Magic Number Squares

... whose columns, rows and diagonals always add to the same value.



Learn the basics of polarity and magnetic fields using magnets and electromagnetism to build interesting projects.
No experience necessary.
Advanced projects for advanced students.


 Electricity and Electronics

Learn the basics of electric circuits and build interesting projects using lights, buzzers, motors, switches and electronic "chips".
No experience necessary.
Advanced projects for advanced students.

... and more!


And in the meantime you can always
Purchase Constructing The Universe Activity Books to learn geometric construction through nature and art at home!

Especially recommended for youngsters are Volumes 1, 2, 3 and 6.
Books are $20 each or all six for $100.

Click on any book to see it's Table of Contents


To the Constructing The Universe Home Page

(c) 2012 Michael S. Schneider