Wednesday, 1 September, 2021

China bans video games; AFL Grand Final goes to Perth, why scientists are collecting dugong poo; and Wally the walrus finds a home.



Swysh: Personalised video messages from your favourite sports stars


Wally the walrus clambers aboard:

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Do you ever get annoyed when your parents try to limit your screen time? Do you roll your eyes or stamp your feet when the adults in your life put a limit on the number of hours you’re allowed to play video games? 

Then just be grateful that you don’t live in China. Because the government there has just issued new rules restricting kids to no more than three hours of video games a week in an attempt to combat smartphone addiction.

All children under the age of 18 are only allowed one hour of gaming on Friday, Saturday and Sunday – so three hours in total. The Chinese president has introduced the new rules to drag children away from screens and get them doing healthier activities.

It’s a tightening of previous restrictions which allowed kids to play up to one-and-half hours on any day, and up to three hours per day on the holidays. 

The Chinese government has told companies that produce online games that they will face severe penalties if they allow children to play their games for any more than three hours a week.

According to reports, too much screen time in China, and too much time spent playing online video games, has led to an increase in short-sightedness among the younger population – and problems with diet and health among children. The government says it hopes the new rules breaks what it call an ‘unhealthy addiction to smartphones’ among its young people. 



Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops, and today we’ve landed in Ireland – where Wally the Walrus finally has a home he can call his own.

You’ll remember we;ve spoken before about Wally, the wandering walrus – who, despite coming from the Arctic Circle, has spent the European summer swimming around harbours in Ireland, France, Wales and Spain. 

He’s even made himself at home on several boats during that time – clambering aboard to lie in the sun – and sinking some of them because he’s just so heavy. 

Well, wildlife authorities in Ireland are in the process of building a pontoon for Wally. A pontoon is a floating platform. Which will be robust enough to handle Wally’s weight. Robust is a fancy word meaning strong and durable and hard to break. 

I’ve stuck a link in today’s episode notes to new video of Wally clambering aboard – and almost sinking – a boat. Go Wally. We like your style.




Squiz Kids in Perth … has the AFL got a treat for you? The grand final is coming to town.

Yes indeed … often described as the biggest event on Australia’s sporting calendar, the grand final will be played at Optus Stadium on September 25.

It’s incredibly disappointing news for footy-mad Victorians – and so we send you a virtual hug. But the Victorian government announced yesterday that with Melbourne in the midst of its 6th lockdown – and with the grand final only three and half weeks away – a decision needed to be made and Perth came up trumps. 

It’s only the second time in the history of the game that the grand final has NOT been held in Melbourne … last year’s clash between the Richmond Tigers and Geelong Cats was held at the Gabba in Brisbane.

But don’t fret too much Victorian Squiz Kids … part of the deal of sending the GF to WA is that there will be extra premiership matches held in Victoria for the next four years – including in regional Victoria. Result! 




Researchers in Far North Queensland have been up to their elbows in pooh … all in the name of science. By scooping hundreds of slimy green poohs out of the water, they’ve discovered that dugongs and turtles are basically seagrass farmers. 

Dugongs – which are otherwise known as sea cows – are the world’s only vegetarian marine mammal, and seagrass is the most important part of their diet. But seagrass seed is very slow to germinate—that means sprout— if left alone to just drops to the ocean floor. That’s where the fertilising farmers of the sea come in. Researchers from James Cook University have found that seeds that were eaten by dugongs and turtles and then poohed out tended to germinate much faster and with much greater success.  

Having a healthy seagrass ecosystem is important to more than the fishing industry: seagrass protects coasts from the impacts of storms, improves the quality of marine water and helps prevent climate change. So having those dugong farmers spread the seeds via their pooh is really important. And having scientists willing to scoop that pooh into an esky—which they promise they aren’t using for anything else— is also a wonderful thing. 




“It’s time for the S’Quiz, but before we jump in … only four more sleeps until Father’s Day .. what do you mean you don’t know what to get him? Does he love watching footy? Is he a league fan or a cricket fanatic or a rugby union man? Then Swysh – the premier provider of personalised video messages from Australia’s favourite sports stars – has just the prezzie idea for you. Fun, surprising and wonderfully original – imagine your Dad’s face on Sunday when he opens a custom-made video from his sporting hero. Hashtag winner.

Just pick a star on Swysh, tell them what you want them to say, and Swysh will take care of the rest – sending you the video via email and SMS! 

And the best bit? Part of the proceeds from every Swysh video goes to charities like the Starlight Children’s Foundation and Variety. Check them out at – that’s swysh s-w-y-s-h. There’s still time to get it delivered by Father’s Day – but be quick! There’s a link to their website in today’s episode notes.”



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

  1. What’s the name of marine mammal, sometimes also referred to as ‘sea cow’ whose pooh is being collected in Far North Queensland?
  2. Which country has put a limit on the number of hours children are allowed to play online games?
  3. Which Australian city will host this year’s AFL Grand Final?




It’s September 1…. If you see a bunch of public monuments, buildings and bridges lit up in yellow tonight, it’s because today is National Wattle Day. If you’re near a sprig today, stick it behind your ear. 

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

Ivy from Fairfield Heights, Logan from Craigburn, Summer from Adelaide, Henry from Petersham, Allam from Cannon Hill, Remy from Cairns, Dylan from Leichhardt, Zali from Darwin, Nathan from West Pennant Hills, 

Riley from Sandigo, Makenna from Capalaba, Ezekiel from Laurieton and Ava from Blackburn North. 

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

To Stage 2 at Abbotsford Public School for working so well on Google Classroom  – your teachers are super proud of you. 

To Cash & Harper from Mount Riverview who are also doing their mum proud. 

Blake sends a herogram to Mrs Karatzis, Mrs Dous and class 3/4KD at Marayong Public School

Another home learning shout out to the Grade 5 classes at St Joseph’s Primary School in Narrandera – your teachers are really impressed by your hard work and they want to send a special thank you to all the mums and dads who are also at home helping.   And one more herogram to Mrs Livah (pronounced “lee-vah”)  and class 3L at West Wallsend Public School  – who listen to Squiz Kids every day and are big fans! Aww – that’s nice. I’m a big fan of yours too West Wallsend.


The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Dugong
  2. China
  3. Perth