Thursday, 17 August, 2023

Brave Matildas bow out; Italian volcano spews lava; Squiz-E sniffs a fake; and XBox cracks down on naughty gamers.



Mt Etna erupts: VIDEO:

Squiz Kids Shortcut: Earthquakes + Volcanoes

XBox rules

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There were tears, slumped shoulders and looks of utter desolation as the Matildas World Cup fairytale came to end last night, with Australia’s new heroines going down 3-1 to England in the World Cup semi-final in Sydney. 

As millions of Aussies cheered on from living rooms, live sites, pubs, clubs and stadiums across the country, the girls in green and gold fought valiantly to keep a nation’s World Cup dreams alive.

But finally, the England Lionesses were just too strong – creating a wall the Matildas just couldn’t break through in defence, and taking full advantage of every shot they had at goal. 

Not even a flash of footy brilliance from the world’s greatest player, Australia’s Sam Kerr, was enough to save the match. And while her goal – a scorcher from outside the box and with the striker in full flight – was easily the most thrilling moment of the 90 minute game, the Tillies were quite simply outplayed on the night. 

It means England will now play Spain in the World Cup final on Sunday – and Australia will play for third place honours against Sweden in Brisbane on Saturday. 

And while the loss was felt keenly last night – with many of the Matildas slumped on the paddock afterwards, tears streaming down their face – it’s still the best we have ever done at a football World Cup. Until last night, Australia had never been in a World Cup semi final.  

And in the big picture, the Matildas have achieved something far more important than a World Cup trophy.

In the course of the past four weeks, they have brought the country together, united us in our love of sport, and in the process, changed the face of female sport in this country forever. 

Matildas: Squiz Kids Salutes you … each and every one of you



Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops. And today we’ve landed in Sicily – an island that is part of Italy – where a volcano has erupted spewing lava into the sky and causing the closure of the local airport.

Mt Etna is one of the most famous volcanoes in Europe. It sits next to the very crowded city of Catania – and close to well-known tourist towns like Taormina. And it erupts regularly. Like, several times a year on average. 

There was so much lava spewing out of Etna on Monday that flights in and out of Catania were cancelled and cars in the streets of the city were covered in ash. Happily, no one was hurt – as Sicilians watched on patiently as their rumbly neighbour did her thing and went about their day. 

Mt Etna is the highest volcano in Europe. I’ve stuck a link to video of the eruption in today’s episode notes. And I’ve also stuck a link in the episode notes to our super excellent Squiz Kids Shortcut on Earthquakes and Volcanoes. You’re welcome. 



Now, I know none of you would fall into the category of behaving badly while playing games online … right? Well you should nevertheless know that XBox is cracking down on gamers who don’t play by the rules. 

This week the gaming giant announced a new set of rules aimed at stopping anti-social behaviour on XBox ..  what’s anti-social behaviour? It’s a fancy term for people behaving badly: swearing, bullying, making rude or threatening remarks to other players. 

From this week, a new system will give every gamer eight strikes before they’re out. Similar to a demerit system used with drivers’ licences, it will work like this: two strikes and you’re suspended for a day; four strikes and you’re banned from the XBox platform for a week. Eight strikes and you’re booted off messaging, party chats and multiplayer  games for a whole year.

I’ve stuck a link in today’s episode notes to the blog post explaining it all.  

Consider yourselves warned … 




Every Thursday, Squiz-E the Newshound sticks his snout into Squiz Kids HQ to report back on fishy things he’s sniffed out on the internet. And this week – Squiz E’s nose has been a-twitching since he came across a Facebook post supposedly showing a photo of two electric vehicles on fire. The photo caption, above a great big fireball on a freeway, says: “this is what happens when electric vehicles collide’. Except something didn’t feel right for Squiz-E. He has, as you know, an excellent nose for misinformation – and he sniffed something fishy straight away. Sure enough, after a little bit of a reverse Google Image search, Squiz-E discovered the photo was not of two cars colliding, but a fire that was caused after gas cylinders exploded on the back of a truck.

There are so many instances of fake photos and fake videos online – that it’s really important to always do as Squiz E says, and that’s to Stop. Think and Check before believing everything you see, read or hear on the internet. Just as it’s super important for all kids to learn to be critical consumers of media. With more information coming at our kids than at any other time in history, we’ve launched Newshounds: a free, eight-part podcast and classroom activity resource – teaching kids to recognise misinformation when they come across it online. More than 1500 schools across the country have already signed up and started the programme … to make sure your kids are among them – visit or jump in via the link in our episode notes. 




Hands up who’s ready for Book Week? Who reckons they’ve got the best costume planned in ALL of Australia? Then why don’t you share a photo of it with us … and maybe even win some cool prizes for your troubles?  

Earlier this week I ran into Catch the Reading Bug from the Squiz Kids Book Club – and while she knows you;re all probably busy with your glitter and hot-glue guns preparing your Book Week costumes for next week – she’s offering three fabulous prize packs to the kids with the best costumes. To enter: all you have to do is get your parents or teachers to upload a photo of you in your Book Week costume to their social media – either Instagram or Facebook – tag us @squizkids or #squizkids, and give our page a follow, and you’ll automatically go into the running to win one of three fabulous prize packs from our friends at Walker Books. And teachers: there will be a prize for best-dressed teacher too  – give Squiz Kids a follow on Facebook and upload your pic to your socials tagging us – and we’ll re-post them to our own socials pages and pick a winner. Because who doesn’t love Book Week. Happy glue gunning! 



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 volcano that has erupted in Italy?
  2. What’s the name of the English women’s national football team?
  3. Which gaming platform has introduced an eight-strikes and you’re out system to stamp out bad behaviour?




 It’s August 17 – Its Cupcake Day today in the United Kingdom – yum! And National Black Cat Appreciation Day in the United States – because black cats get a bad rap.

It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today … Aviah from Junee, Corby from Gundagai, Ben from Tabulam, Axel from Woongarrah, Danny from Altona Meadows, Emma from Albany Hills, Atticus from Doncaster East, Zac from Cobbitty, Farheen from Turramurra, Easton from Cairnlea, Mila (pronounced Meela) from Ferntree Gully, Anastasia from Campbelltown and Lucinda from Echuca. 

And belated birthday shout outs go to… Noah from Cairnlea and Daniella listening over in Johor Bahru, Malaysia. 

Classroom shoutouts today go to … Class 3O and Mr O’Brien at Dee Why Public School, class 4B and Mrs Farrell at St Christopher’s Catholic Primary School in Holsworthy, class 2C with Mrs Clarke and 2G with Miss Gianerelli at Melbourne Girls Grammar School in South Yarra, class 5S and Ms Sarah at St Mary’s College in Broome, class 4 Blue and Mr Preston at St Marys Catholic Primary School in Orange, class 5W and Miss Poot at Our Lady of Fatima Primary School in Sydney and lastly Mr B’s class at Anna Bay Public School.


The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Mt Etna
  2. The Lionesses
  3. XBox