Monday, 1 November, 2021

Halloween hits new heights; Japan’s sea made of stone; King Kyle smashes a record; and hands up for a fluffernutter!



Sydney kids trick or treat:

Swimming in pumice stone:

New words in the dictionary:


Squiz Kids Instagram:

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Ghosts and ghouls and zombies and witches were out in force all over Australia last night as the country embraced Halloween with gusto. 

With pandemic lockdowns lifted in our major cities, and kids back at school from last week, trick or treating hit new heights as suburban homes all over the nation were decorated with spider webs, skeletons and the walking dead as Aussie kids dressed up in their spookiest costumes.

Did you hit the streets last night and hassle your neighbours for lollies? Yeah, me too. Did you know that amazingly, Halloween was barely celebrated here in Australia 15 years ago – it was mostly only celebrated in America. I’ve stuck a link in today’s episode notes to a gallery of photos of Sydney kids all dressed up … 

Also reaching new heights today will be many people taking advantage of the fact that from today – fully vaccinated Aussies can once again travel overseas. Woo-hoo! Residents of NSW and Victoria are now also able to move freely about their states – meaning the regional parts of the states are open to visitors from the cities – thanks to a further easing of restrictions. How good is that?

And it’s a big day on the other side of the Earth today, as the COP26 climate change summit gets underway in Glasgow with leaders and delegates from all over the world discussing how to stop the planet getting hotter. 

Swedish teenage climate warrior, Greta Thunberg, arrived over the weekend and was mobbed by lots of excited young fans as she got off a specially-chartered train that had arrived in Scotland. 



Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops, and today we’ve landed off the coast of Japan, where huge quantities of floating stones have damaged ships, clogged ports, and made it impossible to swim. 

Wait, what? Stone doesn’t float! It sinks to the bottom … everyone knows that! Well, there’s one exception. It’s called pumice stone, and it’s formed when lava comes out of a volcano and mixes with water, cooling it rapidly and filling it with bubbles. Those bubbles are why the stone can float. 

An undersea volcano erupted in August, about 1000km off the coast of Japan. How cool is that? A volcano that erupts under water, spewing out lava which almost instantly turns into a floating stone! Now, months later, massive quantities of pumice are arriving on Japan’s coastline, affecting 30 ports and lots of beaches. I’ve popped a video in your episode notes showing a woman trying to have a swim in waters packed with pumice stone .. it looks ouchy.




You guys know what a dictionary is right? But did you know that every year, the dictionary gets updated, depending on which words have been popular that year? The folks who publish the Merriam Webster dictionary have just released a whole bunch of new words they’ve just decided to add. And we’re excited to see that fluffernutter has made the grade … which is a sandwich made with peanut butter and marshmallow between two slices of white sandwich bread. … mmmm … and it’s good to see the abbreviations TBH – meaning To Be Honest – and FTW – meaning For The Win – are also on the list … because how else would us adults know what you kids are saying? Though I’ve got to say I’m less excited that ‘dad bod’ has made it into the dictionary … meaning: the slightly flabby body of a middle-aged father. Because – well, I suppose that’s because I have one. I guess i should cut back on the fluffernutters…




And today we’re sending a big Squiz Kids salute to Aussie swimmer and gold-medal winning Olympic champ, Kyle Chalmers – who this weekend smashed the world record for the men’s short-course 100 metres freestyle.

Swimming at the World Championships in Russia, and lining up against some of the fastest swimmers in the world, the 23yo from Adelaide took to Instagram after his swim and said he could scarcely believe it himself.

You see, only 10 months ago, he was in hospital recovering from shoulder surgery. The fact that he won a silver medal at the Tokyo Olympics in July – and then broke a world record this weekend … well, that makes him a special sort of champion in our eyes …  




This is the part of the podcast where you get to test how well you’ve been listening …

  1. What’s the name of the volcanic stone that so filled with air-bubbles that it floats?
  2. Name the Aussie swimmer who’s just beaten the men’s short-course 100m freestyle world record?
  3. What’s the name of the marshmallow sandwich that’s just been added to the dictionary?




It’s November 1 … pinch and a punch … it’s All Saints Day in the Christian church .. a day to celebrate, as the name suggests, all the saints of Christianity.

It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today…Cailin from Newcastle, Dean from Griffith and Darren from Cherrybrook. 

And belated shout out go to…Remy from Mt Eliza, Harper from Ballajura, and Magnus from Subiaco

Classroom shout outs today go to…Mr Price’s year 5 Bunmarra class and Mrs Garner’s year 2 Warragal class, at The Hills Grammar School in Sydney, to Mrs Toledano and Year 3 at Blackwell Public School; to Class 3/4 V at Stanmore Public School and finally to class 2C and Mrs Schiller at Ross Hill Public School in Inverell. 


The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Pumice
  2. Kyle Chalmers
  3. Fluffernutter