Thursday, 9 September, 2021

Kids and COVID report released; Iceland’s big air suckers; Brisbane’s first footy final; and Spot the robotic dog gets to work.



Spot the Robotic Dog:

Masked Singer Trailer:

Dannii Minogue:


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





There were two interesting reports in the news yesterday that had direct implications for kids. 

The first was a warning from officials that since COVID had kept so many of us indoors, and closed so many public pools – fewer kids were getting to swimming lessons meaning we’ll all have to be extra careful at the beach this summer.

Because we’ve all been in some form of lockdown or living under some kind of restrictions the past year, surf life savers are worried when the weather heats up, there’s going to be a rush to the beach – and we’ll all have either forgotten our water sense – or lost confidence in the water. 

Which is to say: brush up on your swimming skills before hurling yourself into the surf.

The second report out yesterday involving kids had to do with how the dastardly Delta variant of the coronavirus was only having ‘mild’ effects – and that while there were more cases of COVID recorded in schools, kids were generally not passing the virus to one another.

According to a report from the National Centre for Immunisation and Research, if kids are catching COVID at all – and for the most part they are still not – only 2% of those infected have had to go to hospital. The report also found they’re not catching it off other kids, but overwhelmingly, they’re catching it from an adult in their life who hasn’t been vaccinated. 



Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops – and today we’ve landed in Iceland .. where a really clever invention is sucking in polluted air and removing carbon dioxide from it.

So you’ve heard of this thing called climate change, right? It’s being caused by human activity that is putting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere – which is in turn causing the planet to warm. 

So a bunch of clever scientists have come up with a machine fitted with huge fans that suck in air. Carbon dioxide in that air is filtered out, mixed with water and pumped deep underground where eventually it turns into stone. 

Now, we’d need many more carbon dioxide sucking machines all over the world to make even a tiny impact on global warming – and ultimately the best way to fight climate change is to change our behaviours – but it’s an interesting example of how science is being used to solve one of our planet’  rrs most pressing problems.




FIrst it was the AFL Grand Final being relocated to Perth … now it’s the turn of the rugby league grand final -with news yesterday the bigol’ festival of the boot will be played outside of Sydney for the first time in the history of the competition … and the city set to play host to one of the biggest events on the Aussie sporting calender .. .well, it’s none other than Brisbane.

First the Olympics, and now the league grand final … what a year Brissie is having. 

The move has been prompted for the saddest of reasons: because the COVID outbreak in Sydney has meant no large sporting events can take place there. 

The big game will be held at Suncorp Stadium this year … and in a bonus for regional Queensland – preliminary finals will be held in Mackay. Let the games begin !




When you think dogs and telephone poles – you generally think about how they cock their leg on them for a wee. 

But in South Australia, a robotic dog called Spot is learning to inspect the poles, and report problems back to the humans who can fix them. SA Power Networks is the first utility company—which is a company that provides things like water, electricity, and gas—to use a robotic inspector, although Spot dogs have also been used to herd sheep in New Zealand, and police social distancing in Singapore. NASA is even training one to explore caves on Mars! 

Spot is able to scoot around on uneven surfaces, pick himself up after a fall, and carry 14kg of equipment. Good Spot! And the best bit .. he doesn’t each much .. like, anything at all. And you never have to follow him around and pick up his poo. There’s a video of Spot at work in your episode notes. 




Hands up who’s excited about the next season of Masked Singer? Will it be the singing kebab, the singing pavlova or the singing mullet that wins the competition? 

While you ponder that … why don’t you ponder this … singer, dancer, TV presenter and fashion designer Dannii Minogue – who also happens to be a judge on the hit singing show – has kindly agreed to take the Squiz Kids hotseat and answer your questions.

Maybe you go to dance lessons after school and want to know how she made a career in the entertainment industry. Maybe you’re fascinated with how TV shows are made, how long she sits on set to record each show, or how – in the instance of the Masked Singer – they keep the singers identities a secret. Or maybe you’re a budding fashion designer – and you want to know how she comes up with ideas for her clothing label.

Take a look at the links to the Masked Singer promo video and Dannii’s website in today’s episode notes for inspiration. Then get sending your questions to [email protected]. You’ve only got until next Tuesday — so get cracking!  




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

  1. Which city will host this year’s NRL rugby league grand final?
  2. What’s the name of the robotic dog inspecting power poles in South Australia?
  3. In which country is the carbon dioxide sucking machine busily doing its thing? 




It’s September 9 .. birthday for Matilda’s captain and Aussie soccer star, Sam Kerr. 

It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today …. Zayden from Goomalling, Wilson from Dubbo, Addison from Kempsey, Cameron from Surrey Hills, Tayla from Jugiong and Siobhan from Adelaide.

Belated birthday shout outs go to… Isla from Adelaide and Annabelle from Buningyong. 

Plus!!  … Because our friends in Victoria, Canberra and NSW are in lockdown – we’re sending out Home Learning Herograms …. 

Ben in class 3Y at Burraneer Bay Public School sends a herogram to his teacher Miss Yates and wishes you a happy birthday for today!  

Home learning shout outs to the Stage 3 students and Mr Hull and also class 5/6H at Abbotsford Public School.  

A herogram from Georgie to all the grade 3 teachers at Dee Why Public School – especially Mrs Carnegie for always being so chilled. What’s your secret Mrs C?

Another herogram to Mrs Lucas, Mr Niddrie, Mrs Dyball and Mrs Burks at Trinity Catholic School in Murrumburrah. 

A home learning shout out to Zoe and Alice from Newport in Victoria who are currently in 14 day home quarantine and coping really well.

And lastly Ollie in Year 6 at Coogee Public School sends a herogram to his teacher Ms Murphy. 


The S’Quiz Answers:

  1.  Brisbane
  2. Spot
  3. Iceland