Monday, 6 December, 2021

Kids’ vaccine gets tick of approval; Smoking snakes from a basement; Echidna wins Bathurst 1000; and return of the grumpy frog.



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Snake infested house fire: 

Lucky echidna at Bathurst 1000:

Grumpy cat:

Grumpy frogs:


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There’s a special delivery winging its way to Australia just in time for Xmas .. and no it’s not Santa, it’s not coming aboard his sleigh and it won’t be bundled up in a big red sack with a bunch of toys.

It’s a special delivery of a kids’-sized COVID vaccine .. and with the green light expected to be given by health authorities in the next few days, it should be ready to be jabbed into Aussie kids’ arms within the first couple of weeks of January.

Merry Christmas!

The Therapeutic Goods Administration and a group called ATAGI are a bunch of clever doctors who test things like vaccines and decide if they’re safe for us to receive.

And this week, they are expected to give the thumbs up to a special kids-version of the Pfizer COVID vaccine to be given to Australians aged 5-11.  

The kids-only COVID vax has only 10 micrograms of mRNA in it compared to the adult version which has 30 micrograms. 

Reports yesterday said it could be available from as early as January 10. 

Happy New Year!

So, why is that important? Well – apart from the whole keeping you from getting sick thing – it will hopefully mean by the time you come back to school next year, enough of you will have had your first COVID jabs that school closures and weeks of learning from home will hopefully be a thing of the past.

And there’s good reason to think there will be plenty of you lining up to roll up your sleeves to get jabbed.

Since the COVID vaccine was approved for 12-15 year olds only 11 weeks ago, almost 68 percent of Australians in that age bracket have been double vaccinated. Which is extraordinarily fast. 

Overall, 87.9 per cent of Australians aged 16 and over are fully vaccinated and 92.8 per cent have had at least one dose.



Each day we give the world globe a spin, and find a news story from wherever it stops. And today we’ve landed in Maryland in the United States, where a homeowner has burned down his own house after trying to chase out some snakes. Hoping to smoke out the snakes who had taken refuge in his basement to ride out the cold northern winter, the homeowner placed burning coals inside metal containers … but then placed those containers close to other flammable material, and- boom … everything went rapidly downhill from there. 

It took 75 firefighters to put out the fire, and based on the photos in your episode notes, there wasn’t much house left in the end. As for the snakes… one snake skin was found in the ashes, one snake slithered out alive, and the others … well, no one knows. Maybe they’ve found another basement to stay warm in over the American winter. Which is more than the homeowner will have .. oops.



If you like your sports to come with a whiff of petrol and a healthy helping of roaring speed, then you would have been glued to the telly yesterday as the most famous car race in Australia, the Bathurst 1000 played out.

Over 161 laps of a racetrack on Mount Panorama in the town of Bathurst in country NSW, 25 so called supercars battled it out to see who would be crowned King of the Mountain.

And the winner was: Chaz Mostert – taking out his second Bathurst 1000 – beating Cameron Waters and James Moffat who combined to finish second while Brodie Kostecki and David Russell came third.

Crowd favourite Jamie Whincup – racing in his last ever Bathurst – didn’t get the fairytale podium finish ending he was hoping for. 

But a stray echidna who wandered onto the racetrack in the middle of the race and narrowly avoided being run over by multiple race cars as it waddled across the road most certainly did have a fairytale ending, managing to squeeze through the race barriers and off into the bush.

I’ve stuck a link to video of the lucky echidna in today’s episode notes. 



You’ve heard of grumpy cat, right? The cat that was hugely popular on Instagram for having a downturned mouth that made her look permanently grumpy? Well, meet grumpy frog – grumpy cat’s amphibious counterpart.

Right now across parts of the Australian outback, thanks to heavy rains, there are parts of the Simpson Desert where grumpy frogs are everywhere. They’re called grumpy because they too have what looks like a permanent frown. But that’s not the most amazing thing about them.

More amazing is the fact that they bury themselves underground when the water dries up – and lay there sometimes for years and years, only coming back up to the surface when there is rain and – as we’ve had recently – flooding. 

Buried underground in the desert for years at a time waiting for it to rain? Hmm. No wonder they’re grumpy.

I’ve stuck a link in today’s episode notes to photos of grumpy frog – whose real name is a Desert Spadefoot. You’re welcome.




It’s a Monday .. and you know what that means? Today’s the day that another awesome school holiday quiz drops in our Squiz Kids Subscriber channel. 

Today’s quiz is another excellent Kids v Adult Quiz – where you get to test yourselves against the adults in your lives and see who’s been paying the most attention to 2021… 

Later this week, we’ll be serving up two super cool Shortcuts: a special deep dive on The Ashes – what they are, how they started, why they’re important: and a shortcut on Mars: everything you’ve ever wanted to know about the red planet in one ten minute podcast. 

We’ll be rolling this bonus content out all through the school holidays – and throughout next year. A dedicated channel for Squiz Kids super-users. 

Search Squiz on Apple Podcasts and sign-up for a free trial to make sure you don’t miss a thing. You’ll also get last week’s quiz and two shortcuts. Because it’s the season of giving afterall … 



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

  1. What was a man in Maryland trying to smoke out of his basement before burning down his house?
  2. What‘s the name of the town in country NSW where yesterday’s big supercar race was held?
  3. What’s the real name of the grumpy frog?




It’s December 6 … Today is St Nicholas Day in many European countries – where kids leave their shoes out with hay or carrots for St Nick and his horses.

It’s only 19 sleeps to Christmas !! Deck the halls !!

Plus it’s a happy birthday today…to Victoria from Epping and Mia from Ivanhoe.

Belated Birthday wishes to…Findlay from Albany Hills, Indigo from Baulkham Hills and Elizabeth – who’s listening in all the way over there in Lagos in Nigeria — wow! Elizabeth: if you’re listening, please sign up to become a Squiz Kids Correspondent – we want to know about your life. There’s a link to a How To guide in today’s episode notes.

Classroom shout outs today go to…class 5/6D and Mrs Daboussy at Mayfield West Demonstration School, to class 3/4 Banksia and Miss Hurrell and 5M and Mrs Moore – both from Westport Public School in Port Macquarie.  Also a shout out to 4TM at Radford College in Canberra, class 3M and Mrs Smith at Lilli Pilli Public School and 6YM at Carlingford Public School.  

From Father John Therry Catholic Primary School in Balmain East – it’s a shout out to Stage 2 teacher Lauren Biazzo, and also to Elodie who has done a fantastic job starting kindergarten. Finally to class 3/4N at Nowra Anglican College and especially to Eve for her amazing speech on ‘sport’ and to Rohan for his speech on ‘saving rhinos’  – at their recent public speaking competition. Great job guys.


The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Snakes
  2. Bathurst
  3. Desert Spadefoot