Tuesday, 21 February, 2023

New Zealand mops up; Japan’s pop-star school; Ed Sheeran’s hospital visit; and pickles on a pizza. 


Kids + Media Survey:

Are you a parent, guardian or teacher of primary school kids? Then help us paint a picture of Aussie kids and their media habits by filling out this quick, two-minute survey. Thank you in advance!



Today’s Quick Links: 

Ed Sheeran delights kids in Brissie hospital – VIDEO: https://www.instagram.com/p/Co1QY77JkvM/?hl=en

Pickle pizza, anyone? https://www.axios.com/2023/02/17/pizza-trends-2023

Matildas v Spain – match highlights video:https://www.matildas.com.au/video/commbank-matildas-v-spain-highlights-cup-nations-2023

Dig Deeper:

New Zealand mops up – VIDEO: https://www.theguardian.com/world/video/2023/feb/17/its-apocalyptic-locals-faced-with-cleanup-after-new-zealands-cyclone-gabrielle-video

Information on preparing for natural disasters: https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/preparing-for-natural-disasters?context=60042

Understanding natural disasters: https://www.savethechildren.org.au/our-stories/understanding-natural-disasters

Pickle pizza recipe: https://www.thursdaynightpizza.com/ranch-and-dill-pickle-pizza/

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Imagine if you didn’t have electricity in your house for over a week. Or if the roads into your town were cut off, there was no fresh water coming out of your kitchen tap and the local shops had all run out of food.

Because that’s what thousands of New Zealanders have had to face since the aftermath of Cyclone Gabrielle swept across the north island.

Some 22,000 people in and around the Hawkes Bay region were yesterday still without power, and navy ships were being dispatched filled with food and fresh water to reach coastal communities whose access roads have been cut off by Gabrielle’s flooding rains. 

We’ve had our own flood disasters here in Australia recently – with communities in the NSW northern rivers region still trying to put the pieces of their lives back together. To our friends across the ditch – many of whom we know are Squiz Kids listeners – we’re thinking of you.

And it’s a big ol’ congratulatory shout out to the Matildas – Australia’s all-conquering national women’s soccer team – I mean, football team – who beat world number seven Spain in their Cup of Nations clash in Sydney on Sunday night ..  The Matildas now go undefeated into Wednesday’s match up in Newcastle against Jamaica. Go you good things!



Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops. And today we’ve landed in Japan .. again .. could have sworn the globe stopped there yesterday… hmm .. must get it looked at ….on the island of Okinawa to be precise, which is way, way south of the Japanese mainland, where a school of rock has re-opened its doors.

The school was hugely popular back in the 90s, and in its heyday had more than 50,000 Japanese kids apply to become the country’s next generation of pop stars. 

The school is hoping to replicate some of the success that similar pop-star schools have had in neighbouring South Korea – whose bands like BTS have gone on to dominate pop charts around the world.

Singing, dancing songwriting and hip-hop classes instead of English and maths? Hmm …  can’t imagine why that would be popular at all … 




Just when you thought Ed Sheeran couldn’t do any more to burnish his credentials as the nice guy of pop music – he goes and pulls a hospital visit out of the bag.

Burnish your credentials is a fancy way of saying, reinforcing how good you are. And that’s what Ed did on Sunday afternoon in Brissie when – in the hour or so before performing to 60,000 fans at Suncorp Stadium – he paid a surprise visit to the kids at the Queensland Children’s Hospital – performing a pop-up concert in a couple of the wards and in front of a large group of kids, parents and hospital staff.

I know this is not the right segment to say this, but Ed Sheeran, Squiz Kids Salutes you.




The good news? Pineapple on pizza is on the way out. The bad news? Pickles on pizza are on their way in. Euggh.

Those at least are two of the trends reported yesterday in the United States following a nationwide survey of pizza shop owners looking into the changing taste buds of America’s pizza lovers. 

The survey tracked orders across 19,000 pizza stores across the nation to discover Americans’ taste for pineapple on pizzas was waning, while those requesting pickles with their pies – which is American slang for pizzas – is very definitely on the up.

And in news that will come as an unpleasant surprise to my kids at least – firm favourites of the margarita as they are – more and more pizzas are being ordered with mushrooms on top. Mmmm. Mushrooms 


Speaking of nationwide surveys … Squiz Kids is conducting its very own survey – and for any parents or teachers listening out there, we need two minutes of your time to complete it. It’s our inaugural KIDS + MEDIA survey – where we hope to  get a snapshot of how Aussie kids are getting their news and information – and specifically how much of that news and information they are getting from social media. Thanks to those who have already taken the two minutes to fill it out .. for the rest of you – the link to the survey is in today’s episode notes. Muchos gracias. 



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

  1. Which team did the Matildas beat on Sunday night in the Cup of Nations clash in Sydney?
  2. What’s the name of the island to the south of Japan where a pop star school is reopening?
  3. What odd ingredient, made with cucumbers, is being added to lots of pizzas in the United States?





It’s February 21 – it’s Shrove Tuesday … also known as Pancake Day … or Mardi Gras. In the Christian calendar, this is an important day .. also a yummy one. Plus it’s the birthday of Severus Snape from Harry Potter .. or rather, the actor who played him in the movies, the very excellent Alan Rickman. 


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

Lucas from Epping, Xavier from Ashmont, Rosita from Five Dock, Piper from Oyster Bay, Alex from Killarney Heights, Charli from Yass, Annabelle from Albury, Bella and Olivia from Sutherland, Juniper and Zac from Sydney and Hugo listening from Osaka, Japan.


Belated birthday wishes go to … Aleira from Sunshine, Angela from Canley Heights, Mason from Geelong, Jensen from Upper Mount Gravatt, Bianca and Tiger from Woongarrah and Nysa and Rishiv from Point Cook.


Classroom shout outs go to…class 6/5M and Miss Marsh at Lane Cove West Public School, class 4m and Mrs Lacin at St Christopher’s Catholic Primary School in Holsworthy, class 5/6A and Mrs Wright at Austinmer Public School, class 5M and Mrs Nurunsky at St Michael’s Catholic School in Daceyville, class 5/6P and Miss Squires at Sutherland North Public School and lastly to class 4 Blue and Mr Roger at St. Mary’s Star of the Sea Catholic School in Hurstville. 


The S’Quiz Answers:

  • Spain
  • Okinawa
  • Pickles