Thursday, 24 February
Floods, rain and deluge; Colombia’s hippo problem; equal pay for women soccer players; and in outer space, it’s raining gems.
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The great east coast deluge continued yesterday and throughout the night as rainfall records in NSW and Queensland tumbled, hundreds of people got caught in flooding and
What’s a deluge? It’s a fancy word for a sudden rush of water that drenches everything .. which is what the various weather systems up and down the east coast of Australia have done.
While Sydney mopped up yesterday after getting more rain in one day than it usually does in a month at this time of year – and bunkered down for more wet weather today – the south-east corner of Queensland was on high alert as slow moving low pressure systems dumped record amounts of water on towns like Gympie – where two months worth of rain fell in one single night- enough to derail a freight train there.
The heavens opened above Brisbane and the Gold Coast last night – with the Queensland capital and surrounding areas bracing themselves for what could be at least two days now of torrential rain.
What’s a slow moving low pressure system? Low pressure systems are weather systems usually associated with rain. And when they are slow moving, it means they sit above a certain area and saturate it.
Stay safe out there Queensland Squiz Kids ..
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 Colombia .. in South America, where local authorities are having a hard time handling all the hippos.
Wait … what? Hippos? In South America? But hippos are native to Africa – how and why is there a hippo problem in Colombia?
One of the country’s most notorious criminals .. notorious means well-known but not for anything good … flew a bunch of hippos into Colombia many years ago to keep as pets on his great big estate in the Colombian countryside.
Problem was: the hippos had babies and the population grew, and grew and grew – until there were more hippos than they knew what to do with – and they started living in local rivers and wandering into local towns.
And trust me: no one wants to accidentally stumble upon a hippo on their way to the shops. They can be very aggressive …
The Colombian government is working out ways to bring the hippo population under control. Good luck with that ..
It was a big day for women’s soccer yesterday, when the US women’s team finally won a six-year battle for equal pay. Equal pay means getting paid the same amount for doing the same job, and it’s something that’s being talked about a lot in sport.
At the last soccer World Cup, the women’s teams shared a total of $30 million in prize money … which sounds like a lot, until you hear that the mens’ teams got $400 million – more than ten times as much for playing the same game!
Some countries, including Australia, have decided to split the money more fairly between men and women. But that didn’t happen in America, even though the US women have WON four world cups since 1985, while the men haven’t even made a semi final since 1930. And still, the men were earning more money.
Even though yesterday’s settlement in America was a big step forward, women in tennis, AFL, rugby, basketball and more are still fighting to earn the same amount as men. Here’s one stat to leave you with… in AFLW, players get paid about one fifth as much for training and playing as much as the men.
The clouds are made of metal and when it rains, liquid gems fall from the sky. No – I’m not talking about some make-believe world from the Star Wars fictional universe – I’m talking about an actual planet – which astronomers yesterday revealed the most mind-boggling details about.
The planet is called WASP121b, and it’s located about 855 light years away from Earth .. one light year is how far a beam of light would travel in one year … which is approximately nine million million kilometres. So a plant that lies 855 times nine million million kilometres away. So, like, quite a long way away.
On this special exoplanet, one side is in daylight the entire time where temperatures reach up to 3500 degrees celsius and the other side is in total darkness. Clouds are made of metal, winds blow at 17,000 kms per hour, and when it rains, it rains liquid rubies and sapphires.
How do we know all of this? Because we sent a massive telescope up into space many years ago, and from that telescope, we’re able to see planets on the other side of our solar system.
This is the part of the podcast where you get to test how well you’ve been listening …
- Astronomers studying exoplant WASP121b reckon it has clouds made out of what?
- What did the US women’s soccer team win their battle for yesterday?
- What animal are authorities in Colombia working out how to control?
It’s February 24 … today is Fat Thursday in countries like Poland, Germany and Spain … when people gorge themselve on fatty foods before Lent, the Christian practice of giving something up before Easter.
It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today …
Duke from Craigburn, Audrey from Stanwell Park, Bede from Sydney, Erik from Windsor, Zoe from Sandhurst, Gabrielle from Pendle Hill, Mitchell from Narrandera, Pita Pehi from Hebersham and Matt from Exeter.
Classroom shout outs go to …class 4L at Avondale School in Cooranbong, class 2/3 Balabala at Quirindi Public School and to all the students at Stratford Public School with Mrs Smith and Miss Franks.
Lastly, a very special shout out from Amanda, over at Squiz Kids for Schools, to her new friends in Melbourne: yesterday, she visited the year 3 students at Ivanhoe Primary, and today she’s seeing year 5/6 students at Mitcham Primary, and Ms Hibbert’s class at St Francis Xavier… and the smile on her face is HUGE.
The S’Quiz Answers:
- Equal Pay