Friday, 7 May, 2021
Starship finally nails its landing; Canada’s sign wars go viral; beware the freaky fanged frog; and woo-hoo it’s our 300th episode!
Starship lands safely – video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X8gCw2y2JNw
Canada’s sign wars: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-56972907
Funny puns for kids: https://www.rd.com/article/puns-for-kids/
What’s Up Fox:
Listening: Bruno Mars: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e-fA-gBCkj0
Reading + Watching: Three Musketeers https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYic5JxgTMc
Squiz Kids Instagram:
Got a birthday coming up and you want a shout-out? Send us an email at [email protected]
Squiz Kids is proudly supported by the Judith Neilson Institute for Journalism and Ideas.
If at first you don’t succeed – then try, try and try again. That’s the moral of yesterday’s big space story after the SpaceX Starship – the rocket that in four previous trials had blown up while trying to land – nailed its landing and set the scene for the next chapter in human exploration of outer space.
Scientists working on the SpaceX Starship program – whose ultimate goal is to ferry humans to the Moon and even to Mars – have spent the past six months sending four test flights into the stratosphere – and watching as each one crashed to Earth.
But yesterday in the United States, the Starship rocket took off, flew to an altitude of 10 kilometres above the surface of Earth, then came back down and landed in one piece.
Not only is it a triumph for persistence, it’s a great leap forward for American businessman Elon Musk’s plans to create a space tourism industry: which is to say: he eventually wants to offer flights to the Moon just like airlines these days offer flights to London or New York or Dubai. Just think: in a decade you might be able to fly to the Moon? Crazy, huh?
And yes, of course, there’s a link to a video of the safe landing in today’s episode notes.
While we’re on the subject of all things spacey .. remember that Chinese rocket we talked about earlier this week that’s scheduled to fall back down to Earth sometime this weekend? Well, there’s an update: while scientists have said it’s possible that the rocket – or broken up bits of it – could land in a populated part of the globe, it’s much more likely it will fall into the Indian Ocean off the coast of Western Australia on Sunday. How do they know that? Simple maths. In the section of the Earth where the junk could fall, the Indian Ocean easily accounts for most of the space. Got a world map handy? See for yourself. And how about this for a fun – and vaguely disturbing fact. According to space scientists, there is currently about 9,000 tons of space junk floating around above our heads – which is equivalent to the weight of 720 school buses. Yikes.
SPIN THE GLOBE
Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops .. and today, we’ve landed in Canada, in the tiny town of Listowel – where a sign war has erupted that has captured the attention of the internet.
What’s a sign war? It’s not nearly as scary as it sounds. It’s when businesses in a town use the signs outside their shops to send funny messages to one another. It started when a glass company opposite a Dairy Queen ice cream shop posted a sign saying: “Hey Dairy Queen – wanna have a sign war” … and the following day, the sign outside Dairy Queen read: “You bet your glass we do.” From there, sign war fever took over the town – with some really funny messages posted by everything from a pet wash to a sports store. And all of them using really clever puns – which are play on words. My favourite is the funeral home who posted: Sign war with us? Grave mistake!” I’ve stuck a link in today’s episode notes to photos of the signs .. and a link to some very funny puns. See if you can come up with some puns of your own today in class …
Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the garden … comes news that scientists have discovered a new species of frog .. and not just any frog. This one is being described as a ‘freaky fanged frog’ .. which sounds like something out of a horror movie.
But don’t worry. They live in the Philippines. And they’re pretty small. And when you look at the photos of them: their fangs are kind of small and not really all that scary. Phew.
Scientists reckon the fangs are used by the frog to protect it from predators and fight off other frogs. Which i imagine works quite well. Imagine having a fanged frog coming at you? There’s a link to photos of the slimy critter in today’s episode notes. You have to scroll down a bit to see the fangs.
SQUIZ KIDS SALUTES
In this segment we celebrate extraordinary people doing extraordinary things .. and today, we offer up a great big Squiz Kids Salute to all the mums out there. Because, of course, this Sunday is Mother’s Day .. and as we all know, Mums do extraordinary stuff pretty much every day. So if you’re lucky enough to have your Mum nearby this Sunday – make sure you spoil her rotten and let her know how much she’s appreciated. Chocolate seems to work in our household. Or a handmade card. Flowers never go astray. Or breakfast in bed. Did I mention chocolate?
WHAT’S UP FOX?
Every Friday we check in with Squiz Kids ambassador Flynn – known as the Fox to his friends – to see what he’s been reading, listening to and watching. And given that today is Squiz Kids 300th episode (WOOT) – he’s come up with a list of 300-themed things.
On the listening front, it’s Bruno Mars “Locked Out Of Heaven” – the 300th most streamed song in the (admittedly not that long) history of Spotify.
In the watching and reading department, it’s the movie ‘300’ – a sort of historical film about the Spartans – which should only really be watched with an adult’s supervision – and also the Three Musketeers .. the classic book by Alexandre Dumas and subsequent big-budget Hollywood movie adaptation … because we couldn’t find any books with three-hundred in their title.
There are links to all of these cool things in today’s episode notes … and on a personal note: thanks so much to all of our loyal listeners who have faithfully tuned in over the past 18 months to help us get to episode 300. We appreciate every single one of you.
This is the part of the podcast where you get to test how well you’ve been listening …
- What’s the name of the SpaceX spaceship that’s finally nailed a successful landing?
- In which country in North America has a sign war erupted?
- Who’s special day is it this coming Sunday?
It’s May 7 … National No Pants Day in many countries – where people are encourage to parade around in their underwear. Can I maybe suggest you wait until you get home to join in the fun?
It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today …. Mitch from Lysterfield, Annabel from Killara, Sebastian from Campbelltown, Winter from Pascoe Vale, Jack from Abbotsford, Grace from Nowra, Eliza from Croydon Park, Suzie from Sydney, Karen from Fremantle, Lisbeth from Banana and Zeke who’s listening all the way from Los Angeles, California
And some belated birthday shoutouts to… Kylissa from Woodhill and Aryan from Girraween
Weekend birthday shoutouts… Jelena from Fairfield Heights, Harry from Walpole, Bob from Hughenden, Kaizen (Kyzen) from Jindalee, Olive from Melbourne, Jack and Cohen from Cranbourne, Xavier from Perth, Susie from Riverview, Han from Bexley, Malakai from Oran Park, Bhumi from Sydney and James from Newcastle.
The S’Quiz Answers: