The Weekend Links: Sunday Edition

Happy Mother's Day! Now is the perfect time to learn about the interesting case of Anna Jarvis - the woman that is credited with creating Mother's Day, but then spent her lifetime campaigning against it.
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"You know the song Pink Elephants on Parade?  Yesterday Londoners could have been forgiven for believing they were suffering from a similar but altogether more technicolor intoxication as the city was stampeded by two hundred and fifty eight sculptures of elephants."
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On Friday I swore someone was playing with a cat in the office. Turns out it was just Meow Mania. I don't know what this site is, really, but it's kind of oddly amusing (and a great way to quickly annoy people!) Thanks to Leigh Anne for sharing the secret.
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From the Annals of Too Much Time: 15 Geek Inspired USB Hard Drive Modifications.
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From Flossy reader Kate, a link to a competition for the Name of the Year. It makes me thankful that mine doesn't stand out (although for a blogger, it might be helpful!). Do any of you guys have a name you wish you could change (or have changed!), or went to school with unfortunately-named folks?
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Why get a boring ole liberal arts degree when you could get one in surfing or bowling alley management? Here's a list of some of your not-so-average college degrees.
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I like the concept of these Handcrafted Suitcases, but I don't know how my clothes would feel about them (much less the overhead compartment!)
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One of a plethora of great links this week from links contributor Jan: Amazing and astounding giant sand designs.
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The title of this blog says it all: Why would you knit that? As someone who frequently visits Etsy, none of these kinds of items surprise me anymore. The reasoning behind them, though ...
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Finally, from Sarah, "And you thought YOU had bad hair days, and these people do it on purpose!  Although maybe the first guy's can be considered art..."
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Thanks for all the great finds this week! Keep it up - send anything interesting you stumble across this week to FlossyLinks@gmail.com

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College Board Wants to Erase Thousands of Years From AP World History, and Teachers Aren't Happy
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One would be forgiven for thinking that the Ides of March are upon us, because Julius Caesar is being taken out once again—this time from the Advanced Placement World History exam. The College Board in charge of the AP program is planning to remove the Roman leader, and every other historical figure who lived and died prior to 1450, from high school students’ tests, The New York Times reports.

The nonprofit board recently announced that it would revise the test, beginning in 2019, to make it more manageable for teachers and students alike. The current exam covers over 10,000 years of world history, and according to the board, “no other AP course requires such an expanse of content to be covered over a single school year.”

As an alternative, the board suggested that schools offer two separate year-long courses to cover the entirety of world history, including a Pre-AP World History and Geography class focusing on the Ancient Period (before 600 BCE) up through the Postclassical Period (ending around 1450). However, as Politico points out, a pre-course for which the College Board would charge a fee "isn’t likely to be picked up by cash-strapped public schools," and high school students wouldn't be as inclined to take the pre-AP course since there would be no exam or college credit for it.

Many teachers and historians are pushing back against the proposed changes and asking the board to leave the course untouched. Much of the controversy surrounds the 1450 start date and the fact that no pre-colonial history would be tested.

“They couldn’t have picked a more Eurocentric date,” Merry E. Wiesner-Hanks, who previously helped develop AP History exams and courses, told The New York Times. “If you start in 1450, the first thing you’ll talk about in terms of Africa is the slave trade. The first thing you’ll talk about in terms of the Americas is people dying from smallpox and other things. It’s not a start date that encourages looking at the agency and creativity of people outside Europe.”

A group of teachers who attended an AP open forum in Salt Lake City also protested the changes. One Michigan educator, Tyler George, told Politico, “Students need to understand that there was a beautiful, vast, and engaging world before Europeans ‘discovered’ it.”

The board is now reportedly reconsidering its decision and may push the start date of the course back some several hundred years. Their decision will be announced in July.

[h/t The New York Times]

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North America: East or West Coast?
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