So You Want To Put On A Math Circus

A foam sculpture

So You Want To Put On A Math Circus, August 2-12


Three-Credit Signature Seminar Section: HNRC 4013H (024), 9:00-12:45

One-Credit Forum Section: HNRC 300VH (025), 10:00-11:15

Photo courtesy National Museum of Mathematics

This fall, the Honors College will celebrate 150 years of the University Arkansas by hosting a Math Circus — and we need creative, capable hands on deck! Crowds of people will show up and:

                Weave Bamboo Dodecahedral Stars!

                Grow Enormous Amounts of Rainbow Foam Hyperbolic Surface!

                Stencil Up Some Math Chalk Art

                Enjoy Lots of Hands-On Take-Home Mathartfun Freebies

We’ll have lots of trained volunteers to help out, but in this course, you will help lead, design and put on a Math Circus!  You will:

  • Learn the mathematics, and get to make a lot of mathey things
  • Working in interdisciplinary teams, 
    • Produce freebies like trading cards and stickers,
    • CNC new sidewalk stencils,
    • Improve technical aspects of the sculptures
  • Learn how to organize casual passers-by into a sculpture building machine!
  • Make some art and have some fun!

This course may be taken either as a three-credit signature seminar from 9:00-12:45 or as a one-credit forum from 10:00-11:15. 

About Chaim Goodman-StraussChaim Goodman-Strauss

Chaim Goodman-Strauss came to the University of Arkansas in 1994 after earning his Ph.D. in knot theory at the University of Texas at Austin. Goodman-Strauss served as chair of the Department of Mathematical Sciences from 2008-2015 and teaches a wide variety of courses at different levels. He studies "matching rule tilings,'' at an intersection of discrete geometry, foundational logic and theoretical computer science, publishing a key paper in the field in The Annals of Mathematics. With John. H. Conway and Heidi Burgiel, he is a coauthor of The Symmetries of Things. Goodman-Strauss is also a mathematical illustrator and sculptor. Since 2008 the Gathering 4 Gardner has commissioned participatory sculpture assemblies from Goodman-Strauss working with Eugene Sargent. On campus, you can see his work in Champions Hall and at the Arkansas Research and Technology Park. 

Goodman-Strauss has been involved in mathematical outreach for more than twenty-five years, beginning the Saturday Morning Math Group at U.T. and later producing the Math Factor podcast with KUAF's Kyle Kellams. Since 2012 he has been teaching young mathematicians at Epsilon Camp, Campersand and the National Museum of Mathematics.