Playground designers' whimsical whales, krakens and dragons

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MONSTRUM founders Ole Barslund Nielsen and Christian Jensen create imaginative story-based playgrounds in their native Denmark and around the world. A few examples below: Read the rest

Tumblr's shoplifting community is organized, politically conscious, and at war with weightlifters

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"Liftblr" is the informal, amorphous community of shoplifters who post their hauls to Tumblr using pseudonymous accounts, offering each other support and encouragement. Most seem to be young women, and their community's discourse often circles back to class war, politics, gender and consumerism. Read the rest

Purple Rain tribute by Amanda Palmer, Jherek Bischoff & strings, to benefit kids' charity Prince supported

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Amanda Palmer provides vocals on this 10+-minute Purple Rain cover, backed by Jherek Bischoff and a string quartet consisting of Serena McKinney (violin), Ben Ullery (viola), Alma Fernandez (viola) and Jacob Braun (cello).

It's $1 to download from Bandcamp, with proceeds to the Elevate Hope Foundation, founded by Prince protege Sheila E to provide music therapy to abused and abandoned kids. Prince himself was a supporter of the foundation.

Purple Rain [Amanda Palmer & Jherek Bischoff/Bandcamp]

(via Metafilter) Read the rest

Summer Camps for Coding? Think Again.

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If you're a Boing Boing reader with children, the thought of getting them into coding has probably crossed your mind. Summer is a great time to expose kids to new interests, and coding is no exception. But unlike traditional summer camps, coding camps are less familiar territory, and often demand a high price tag with uncertain outcomes.

Wealthy families are most responsible for American wealth segregation

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Inequality in Children’s Contexts, USC Sociologist Ann Owens's paper in American Sociological Review (Scihub mirror), investigates the factors that contribute most to the unequal lives of wealthy and poor American children, and concludes that the single most significant factor is the neighborhood that the children's parents live in. Read the rest

Students: court orders government agencies to offer educational discount on FOIA requests

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The Freedom of Information Act specifies that government agencies must give a discount to "educational institutions" when they file requests, but for years, agencies led by the Department of Defense have argued that this discount only applies to faculty, not students, who would have to pay full rate even though they generally have less money to begin with. Read the rest

30 students debate mass surveillance on Capitol Hill

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Last week, 30 students used a House Judiciary Committee hearing room to hold a debate on mass surveillance in America.

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A look at digital habits of 13 year olds shows desire for privacy, face-to-face time

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Sonia Livingstone, an LSE social psychology prof, gives us a peek into the results from The Class, a year-long, deep research project into the digital lives and habits of a class of 13 year olds at an ordinary school. Read the rest

Lumberjanes: ground-breaking, wonderful, hilarious comic about adventurous girls

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I'm late to the party on Lumberjanes: I bought the first collection when it came out last summer, then promptly lost it in my overseas move; last weekend, I read it and the next two books and fell head over heels in love with this series of graphic novels for kids and adults.

Reading With Pictures: awesome, classroom-ready comics for math, social studies, science and language arts

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Since its inception as a 2012 Kickstarter, the Reading With Pictures project has gone from strength to strength, culminating in a gorgeous, attractively produced hardcover graphic anthology of delightful comic stories that slot right into standard curriculum in science, math, social studies and language arts. Read the rest

A Fairy Friend: storybook illustrated by a Disney animation legend

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Claire Keene is a legendary Disney animation artist whose work has appeared in Frozen and Tangled; she provides such lively illustrations for children's author Sue Fliess's poem A Fairy Friend that readers are transported to an enchanted world where play and imagination can take you out of this world.

Boy, 7, who donated his hair to child cancer patients is diagnosed with metastatic cancer

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For two years, Vinny Desautels grew out his hair to donate to children with cancer who have lost their hair during treatment. The 7 year old Roseville, California boy was recently diagnosed with an unknown form of metastatic cancer, according to reports from his family and in local news.

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Moving short animation about a boy and his three-legged puppy

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The Present, Jacob Frey's four-minute short about a young boy who's not sure about the three-legged puppy his mom gives him, won more than 50 awards and played more than 180 festivals -- it's got a sting in its tail (and its tale). Read the rest

Community college evicts daycare center to make room for Goldman Sachs

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Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo -- a former venture capitalist who invested state funds with hedge funds during her tenure as state treasurer -- invited Goldman Sachs to set up a partnership with the Community College of Rhode Island, then kicked out the college's daycare center to make room for Goldman staffers to work. Read the rest

Ben Hatke, kids' author and superhero

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You'll know Ben Hatke as author of Boing Boing-beloved illustrated kids' books like Little Robot and Zita the Space Girl, but as this Children's Book Week video shows, Hatke is a literal fire-breathing, acrobatic, sword-fighting superhero! Read the rest

Amazon is liable for in-app charges racked up by pesky children, federal judge rules

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A federal judge ruled that Amazon is responsible for billing parents unauthorized charges that kids made within apps, the Federal Trade Commission said on Wednesday.

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John Oliver and the cast of Sesame Street on lead poisoning

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In light of Flint lead catastrophe, John Oliver gets the cast of Sesame Street to update their 20-year-old segment warning kids to steer clear of lead paint, making it over into an economic parable about moral hazard and aligning incentives. (via Rolling Stone) Read the rest

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