Tuesday, 20 July, 2021
Today's Exercises - Exclusive to Squiz Kids For Schools members
Youngest person ever in space; Sea animals invade Olympics; Le Bron slam dunks Black Widow; and the tiny frog patient.
New Shepard spaceship website https://www.blueorigin.com/
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Squiz Kids is proudly supported by the Judith Neilson Institute for Journalism and Ideas
When you go to bed tonight, do so knowing that when you wake up, a little bit of history will have been made when the youngest person ever makes a trip into space.
Assuming the weather at the launchpad in Texas holds out over the next twelve hours or so, 18 year old Oliver Daeman from The Netherlands will make history aboard the New Shepard, a reusable capsule that can climb 100km to the edge of space. And just to make things extra interesting, clambering into the spaceship alongside him will be the OLDEST person ever to go to space.
Her name is Mary Wallace Funk, she’s 82 years old, and was a pioneering pilot in the 1960s. Known by her nickname Wally, she passed all the terrifically tough tests that NASA put their astronauts through. But… the space agency had no interest in women going into space back then. Fast forward to 2021, and Wally’s dream is set to come true … thanks to billionaire Jeff Bezos who’s funding the flight.
You might remember last week that we talked about the billionaire space race, with Tesla’s Elon Musk, Virgin’s Sir Richard Branson, and Amazon’s Jeff Bezos all getting into the space tourism game.
The flying Dutchman, Oliver Daeman, who only finished high school last year, was one of almost 8,000 people who took part in an online auction to get a seat on the flight. An auction is when you bid money for something – with the highest bid being the winner. The winning bid was a whopping $28 MILLION – but then the winner realised they were busy on the day of lift-off – and so Oliver got pushed to the front of the queue.
Did I mention that this historic space flight will last for all of ten minutes? Yep – that’s how much time they’ll actually spend in space. $28 million for ten minutes. Sheesh.
There’s a link in today’s episode notes to the Good Shepard website.
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 Tokyo — where preparations for the Oymplic Games have been interrupted by a bunch of oysters.
Yes, you heard right. Oysters have invaded one of the most important race courses in the Olympics – forcing organisers of the Games to perform a quick clean up to make sure the race track is ready in time for Friday, when the Olympics begin.
What race course am I talking about? The stretch of water that will host the rowing and canoe events, of course. Which in the past month has suddenly attracted a whole lot of oysters which have attached themselves to floating race markers, weighed them down and started to make them sink.
An emergency operation by Games organisers – at a cost of over one and half million dollars – saw the problem sorted out. And on the bright side: the oysters were the kind that lots of Japanese people love to eat.
Mmmmm … oysters. I know most of you think they look and taste like snot – but give it time, and your tune will change.
POP CULTURE CORNER
And in the box office battle between Black Widow and LeBron James … LeBron has emerged the winner! Helped along by Bugs Bunny and the Looney Tunes crew.
What in the what am I talking about? I’m talking about the fact that Space Jam – the animated film starring basketball legend LeBron James has slam-dunked Marvel superhero flick, Black Widow, at the box office.
What do I mean when I say box office? It’s an expression to describe how much money a movie makes in ticket sales – because, before the internet, the box office was the place at a cinema that all tickets to a movie were sold.
Le Bron and Bugs’ new movie – which is a remake of a movie the rabbit made with Michael Jordan 25 years ago – made $43m in ticket sales on its opening weekend in the United States. Gosh – if that’s how many tickets they sold, imagine how many choc tops got eaten …
SQUIZ KIDS SALUTES
And today we send out a massive Squiz Kids Salute to the vet in Brisbane who performed a life-saving operation on a green tree frog that was smaller than her thumb.
Yes – it’s hats off to Brissie vet Meaghan Barrow who works as a vet for the RSPCA.
When one of her nurses brought in a tiny injured tree frog – measuring only 2cms in length, weighing only a couple grams and grey in colour – she wasn’t sure what she could to help it. The frog had a little hole in its side, and its lung and intestine were poking out.
But using incredibly fine surgical tools – and what must surely be incredibly good eyesight and a very stead hand – Dr Barrow managed to repair the wound and stitch the little froggy back up … with one single stitch.
A couple of days later, and the little fella was hopping around again, happy as a frog in a pond, and his beautiful green colour had returned. Ribbit!
This is the part of the podcast where you get to test how well you’ve been listening …
- What’s the name of the spaceship that will take the youngest person ever into space?
- What sort of sea creature has invaded the Olympic rowing course?
- Which US basketball star is in a movie alongside Bugs Bunny?
It’s July 20 … birthday of Aussie basketballer Ben Simmons, and wildlife warrior Terri Irwin … it’s also International Chess Day AND International Cake Day … i know which one i will be celebrating …
It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today ..
Teejay from Dubbo, Samuel from Five Dock, Ben from Mt Riverview, Adam from Oxenford, Sally from Hervey Bay, Molly from Mornington, Alexis from Revesby, Mabel from Moorabbin, Clara from Hawthorn, Grace from Kellyville, Jay from Balgowrie, Poppi-Lee from Glen Innes, Lachlan from Somerton Park and Yeet from Victoria.
A couple of belated birthday shout outs too to …Jack from Newcastle, Levi from Warners Bay and Jasper and Lucy from Jindalee.
And because many schools are in lockdown, and online classes are once again on the agenda – we’re starting a new shout out segment today called Home Learning Herograms — where teachers or parents wanting to celebrate the good work being done by their kids or classes … and today’s Home Learning Herogram goes to class 4K at Cranbrook Junior School – whose teacher Mrs Harricks says are all doing an excellent job of staying on task … well done 4K.
Otherwise – Classroom shout outs today go to.... Stage 3 Students at Darcey Road Public School, Mr Smith & Class 5S and Mrs Brown & Class 3B at North Ryde Public School, Mr Webster’s Year 6/7’s at Craigburn Primary School.
Mrs Slade’s Year 6 Class at Bertram Primary School and Class 6F from Mackay State School.
The S’Quiz Answers:
- The New Shepard
- Le Bron James