Tuesday, 15 November, 2022

Planet’s population hits 8 billion; Bansky drops into Ukraine; Tay Tay wins all the trophies; and the world’s longest beard chain.



Banksy’s Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/p/Ck1bqL6MsMu/

Banksy artworks: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-63606658

World’s longest beard chain https://apnews.com/article/oddities-wyoming-casper-0644b3c5337f0c8646e592d320a6e00e



Get started on our free media literacy resource for classrooms



Squiz Kids For Schools – Classroom Activities tied to the podcast

Sign up for a 30-day free trial at squizkids.com.au


Quizzes, Shortcuts and Squiz The World 

Parents: Unlock a heap of bonus content with our Squiz Kids Subscriber Specials, only on Apple Podcasts. There’s a 7-day free trial, and you’ll get access to the whole back catalogue of Shortcuts, quizzes, and Squiz The World episodes. Follow the link above or search for Squiz Kids in the Apple Podcast app and click on ‘Give Me More’. 

Stay up to date with us on our Squiz Kids Instagram!  

Got a birthday coming up and you want a shout-out? Complete the form on our Squiz Kids website. Link: SHOUT OUTS or / send us an email at [email protected]






Does it seem a little crowded out there today? Maybe you’re on the school drop-off and you’ve noticed there are more cars on the road than usual – or the train or bus felt more packed than usual this morning. Or the school assembly seemed a little more squishy or the queue for the canteen longer than normal.

That could well be because today marks an important milestone in the history of our Earth. It’s the day that the world’s population ticks over the 8 billion mark. That is to say: as of today – there are 8 billion people living on Earth.

That’s billion with a B. 

That’s more people living on our little planet than ever before – more people needing food, shelter – more people exerting pressure on our already fragile environment. So – yeah – it’s a milestone that comes with plenty of challenges.

But interestingly – while the world’s population is projected to keep growing – possibly to reach 10 billion people by the Year 2080 – there are concerns that the Earth’s population beyond that date could start to decline. 

According to the United Nations, 60 percent of us live in countries where the birth rate is below what’s called the ‘replacement level’ – which is to say: there aren’t nearly as many babies being born around the world as there were 50 years ago. 

China – which has a population of 1.4 billion – so more than one-eigth of the world’s entire population – is worried about how few babies are being born there. 

And get this: while some countries are worried that not enough babies are being born, other countries have the exact opposite problem. According to the UN, there are 195 countries in the world – but just eight of them, including Nigeria, Ethiopia, India and the Philippines – will be responsible for half of all population growth by 2050. 

And you thought it was crowded where you are … 

Oh – and in the two minutes it’s taken me to tell you about this news item, approximately 300 people have been born around the world. 

POW … That’s the sound of my mind being blown …



Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops. And today we’ve landed in Ukraine .. where the graffiti artist Banksy has been making his mark.

Who’s Banksy? Only the world’s most famous graffiti artist .. a person whose identity is a secret and who scampers about the place creating amazing graffiti artworks that captivate the world.

His latest efforts include a piece of wall art, painted onto a building on the outskirts of the Ukranian capital of Kyiv which had been bombed by Russian shells. 

The artwork depicts a gymnast doing a handstand. 

A second artwork – not claimed by Banksy but believed to be his handiwork – shows a little boy in a judo outfit slamming to the ground a man who resembles Russian President Vladimir Putin.

I’ve stuck a link to the artworks in today’s episode notes. 

Bansky himself never makes any public statements about his work – but the people of Ukraine – now suffering through their ninth month of war – have interpreted the artworks as a show of support from the mysterious – and wildly popular street artist.




There’s just no stopping the Tay Tay Express as Taylor Swift capped off what has been a remarkable few months by completely dominating the European MTV Awards yesterday.

Held in Dusseldorf in Germany – and hosted by Kiwi Thor director Taika Waititi and his new wife, former X Factor judge, Rita Ora – the awards had Tay Tay up on stage no fewer than four times to accept the awards for best artist, best pop, best video and best long form video. She’s going to need a new shelf.

Niki Minaj did alright two, with two awards – for best hip hop and best song – Harry Styles picked up a gong for best live performance, and it wouldn’t be a music awards ceremony without the boys from BTS going home with a trophy …in the least surprising development of the night, they won the award for the biggest number of fans. 

And of course the red carpet was awash with the sort of outfits your parents would never want to see any of you in .. which will no doubt make you all want to wear them. This, afterall, is the way. 



And today we turn our attention and doff our cap to the gentlemen in  Wyoming in the United States who have attempted to set a new Guinness World Record for the longest beard chain.

The longest what?

Beard chain, my friends. And yes, it’s exactly what it sounds like. It’s a group of men clipping their beards together to form one continuous chain of facial hair.

Which I have to say makes me want to vomit. But enough about me. 

The previous record for a beard chain, set in Germany in 2007, was just over 19 metres long .. the impressively hairy menfolk in Wyoming managed to create a beard chain that measured 45 metres long … so they smashed it. 

The event took place as part of something called the National Beard and Moustache Championships .. which quite frankly makes my face itch just thinking about it ..



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

  1. Name the graffiti artist whose work has popped up in war-torn Ukraine?
  2. What milestone figure will the world’s population reach today?
  3. Which singer/songwriter scooped the pool at this year’s European MTV Awards? 




It’s November 15 … today is Steve Irwin Day – celebrating the life of the original Crocodile Hunter – and founder of Australia Zoo. If you’ve got a bit of khaki in your wardrobe, wear it today. 

It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today .. 

Marcus from Bexley, Harley from Caulfield, Steve from Piara Waters, Jim from Adelaide, Gabriella from Brookfield, Taiya from Jewells, Oscar from Appin, Sukhmanpreet from Marayong, Alyssa from Melbourne, Felix from Darlington, Raeesah from Kearns and Aya who is from Perth but currently living in Yokohama, Japan and to Emily listening over in Seoul – South Korea.

Belated birthday shout outs go to Thomas from Melbourne, Grace from NSW, Jenny from Virginia Beach, Zane (pronounced Zun-neh) from Highgate, and Annika from Floreat. 

And today’s classroom shoutouts go to ..class 2P and Mrs Ditchfield at Oxford Falls Grammar School in Sydney, year 3 Yanagaa and Mr Earnshaw at Appin Public School, class 6G1 with Miss Jeppesen at Annandale State School in Townsville, year 6 teacher Hannah Bowman at Bradbury Public School, class 3T and Ms Taylor at Randwick Public School – who love using Squiz Kids in their reading groups and lastly to class 3F and Mr Finn at Holsworthy Public School and goodbye and good luck to classmate Andrea who is moving to New Zealand this week!


The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Banksy
  2. 8 billion 
  3. Taylor Swift