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October 24th, 2017

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'Tag' Banned; 'Rover, Red Rover' in Jeopardy | Bright Ideas

News of the Weird by Chuck Shepherd

By News of the Weird by Chuck Shepherd

Published Nov. 24, 2015

 'Tag' Banned; 'Rover, Red Rover' in Jeopardy | Bright Ideas

Two suburban Minneapolis elementary schools this fall hired a consulting firm to advise officials on kids' recess, and the leading recommendations (promoting "safety" and "inclusiveness") were elimination of "contact" games in favor of, for example, hopscotch. Some parents objected; recess, they said, should be more freestyle, unstructured. (More consultants' advice: De-emphasize refereed "rules" games in favor of monitors who simply praise effort.) One Minnesota principal noted improvement -- fewer fights and nurse visits now -- but as one parent said, her child feels that recess is no longer really "playing." [Star Tribune, 10-5-2015] [Mercer Island Reporter, 9-24-2015]

Unapparent Problem, Solved: Vladimir Laurent (an insurance executive in Coral Springs, Florida) received his U.S. patent on Sept. 29 and can proceed mass-producing "The Shield" -- his brainstorm to keep men's genitalia from dragging on the inside of toilet bowls while they're seated. Laurent told the South Florida Business Journal that his device was something he "needed, personally" (though he's aware that not all males experience the sensation). The Shield is basically a cup attached to the bowl by suction that allows movement via a ball-and-socket joint. [South Florida Business Journal, 9-30-2015]

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