Your Money Or Your Kid!


Posted By: Paul - Sun Dec 27, 2020 - Comments (6)
Category: Education, Money, 1930s, Europe

How to raise a genius

According to Harold G. McCurdy, a professor at the University of North Carolina, the first step was to not send your kids to public school.

Not that he had anything against public schools, having sent his own kids to one. And he questioned whether raising kids to be geniuses was a desireable goal, since he believed that geniuses often led isolated, unhappy lives.

Nevertheless, based on his study of the childhoods of 29 geniuses, conducted back in 1960, he determined that "three striking factors seemed to be typical of the childhood pattern of genius":

one, close association with an interested adult; two, relative isolation from other children; and three, a great development of imagination and fantasy.

"Public school education," he declared, "works against these three things."

Apparently McCurdy's study has been embraced by some proponents of home schooling. Although I don't get the sense that it was his intention to promote that.

You can read McCurdy's full study here: The Childhood Pattern of Genius

The Oklahoma Daily - Feb 17, 1961

Posted By: Alex - Thu Oct 15, 2020 - Comments (5)
Category: Education, Intelligence, School, 1960s

Teacher fired for in-class castration

June 1992: Dick W. Pirkey Jr., a teacher at Harmony High School in Texas, was fired from his job after a student in his animal husbandry class castrated a pig with his mouth. Pirkey acknowledged that he had described such a procedure to his students, but insisted that the 17-year-old had performed the procedure without his permission and before he could stop it.

Seven months elapsed between the incident and Pirkey's termination. Explaining the delay, the School Superintendent admitted that when the board had first heard about the in-class oral castration they had thought it was a joke and that someone was trying to play a trick on them.

Pirkey appealed his termination, noting that oral castration was described in a state-approved textbook, and that it was also "routinely practiced throughout the state, but not in our locale, and is normally performed on sheep."

However, his firing was ultimately upheld by the State Commissioner of Education who pointed out that instead of stepping in to stop the student from performing the procedure, Pirkey had actually taken pictures of him as he did it. In fact, Pirkey even took a picture of the student "holding the testicle overhead in a victory stance."

Tyler Morning Telegraph - June 20, 1992

Longview News Journal - Feb 26, 1994

Posted By: Alex - Tue Sep 15, 2020 - Comments (3)
Category: Animals, Farming, Education, 1990s

Croaker College

A training school for frog contestants in jumping competitions.


Source (page 7).

Posted By: Paul - Thu Aug 06, 2020 - Comments (2)
Category: Animals, Education, Frauds, Cons and Scams, 1970s

High School Fitness

Imagine trying to institute such a program in a high school today!

And of course, nothing said of what the girls are doing.

Posted By: Paul - Fri Jun 19, 2020 - Comments (5)
Category: Education, Exercise and Fitness, 1960s

What a Country!

This is a show that could bring the nation together again.

Wikipedia page.

Posted By: Paul - Tue Jun 16, 2020 - Comments (3)
Category: Education, Stereotypes and Cliches, Television, Foreign Customs, 1980s

Augmented Roman

Augmented Roman was one of the periodic attempts to improve and rationalize the English alphabet. Introduced in the 1960s by Sir James Pitman, the idea was to expand the alphabet from 26 letters to 43, and to have each letter represent a single, distinct sound. Unlike the current alphabet in which letters can have different sounds depending on context.

Proponents of Augmented Roman imagined teaching children to read using this improved alphabet, and then having the kids switch over to the standard alphabet later. And that's where the plan ran aground, because most people figured that if kids have to learn the standard alphabet anyway, just teach them that from the beginning.

image source: omnivorenz

Tampa Bay Times - Sep 2, 1962

Tampa Bay Times - Sep 2, 1962

Posted By: Alex - Fri Oct 25, 2019 - Comments (7)
Category: Education, Languages, 1960s

Raising a Perfect Wife From Scratch

Sabrina Sidney, was a British foundling girl taken in when she was 12 by author Thomas Day, who wanted to mould her into his perfect wife. Day had been struggling to find a wife who would share his ideology and had been rejected by several women. Inspired by Jean-Jacques Rousseau's book Emile, or On Education, he decided to educate two girls without any frivolities, using his own concepts.

In 1769, Day and his barrister friend, John Bicknell, chose Sidney and another girl, Lucretia, from orphanages, and falsely declared they would be indentured to Day's friend Richard Lovell Edgeworth. Day took the girls to France to begin Rousseau's methods of education in isolation. After a short time, he returned to Lichfield with only Sidney, having deemed Lucretia inappropriate for his experiment. He used unusual, eccentric, and sometimes cruel, techniques to try to increase her fortitude, such as firing blanks at her skirts, dripping hot wax on her arms, and having her wade into a lake fully dressed to test her resilience to cold water.

The full story here.

Posted By: Paul - Tue May 07, 2019 - Comments (0)
Category: Eccentrics, Education, Husbands, Wives, Eighteenth Century, Nineteenth Century, Love & Romance

Sparky’s Hazard House

Although not as famous as McGruff the Crime Dog, Sparky the Fire Dog has been around for a while.

I am particularly interested in his "house of death by incineration" diorama.

Apparently you can still purchase one from this company.

You might also want their Hazard Farm model.

Posted By: Paul - Sun Sep 02, 2018 - Comments (2)
Category: Anthropomorphism, Death, Destruction, Domestic, Education, Corporate Mascots, Icons and Spokesbeings, Children, 1950s

Sti-Yu-Ka Oatmeal Ritual

Sti-Yu-Ka, a well known tradition at Springfield College, started as a variety of activities planned in celebration on the eve of Stepping Up Day, Springfield College’s way of marking the academic accomplishments of students as members of each class advance a year in their college careers. It is held during the end of the school year. Sti-Yu-Ka was founded in 1961 by Dr. Irving Conrad, then president of the Student Government Association. The name Sti-Yu-Ka seems to have come from the Springfield College club Hosaga, a club that performed Native American traditional ceremonial dances and songs. The name seems to have come from a dance that was performed on the eve of the achievement of adulthood and meant “The Coming of Age,” an appropriate name for an event on the eve of Stepping Up Day.At the time of its creation, Sti-Yu-Ka events started on Saturday at around 1 p.m. and went until the late night/early morning hours on Sunday. Conrad tried to create events that would take the focus away from alcohol. Such activities included a pig roast, canoe races, pie eating contests, square dancing, egg tossing, Jell-O wrestling, roller skating, a greased pig chase, fireworks on Rally Hill, and even the act of smashing a car. However, drinking did become a part of these activities and over the years the Office of Student Affairs increased the official Sti-Yu-Ka events from one weekend to one week, its present length. Again, this was done in an effort to keep students on campus doing activities that were social in nature, and to allow students to spend time with their peers and to try not to focus on alcohol. Although new events are thrown into the lineup, some staple events that have remained as Sti-Yu-Ka tradition over the years are the comedian on opening night, the Campus Activities Board’s Midnight Bingo, Residence Life’s Taste of SC, and the Greased Pole Climb and Oatmeal Pass.

Posted By: Paul - Sun Dec 17, 2017 - Comments (0)
Category: Ceremonies, Education, Universities, Colleges, Private Schools and Academia, Food, Regionalism

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Alex Boese
Alex is the creator and curator of the Museum of Hoaxes. He's also the author of various weird, non-fiction, science-themed books such as Elephants on Acid and Psychedelic Apes.

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Paul has been paid to put weird ideas into fictional form for over thirty years, in his career as a noted science fiction writer. He has recently begun blogging on many curious topics with three fellow writers at The Inferior 4+1.

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