Wednesday 12 August, 2020

Rivers in the sky above Oz; Lion pooh for sale; the dwarf planet ocean world; and the Queen’s favourite film.



ET – movie trailer

Twins react to Phil Collins:

World Elephant Day






Depending on where you live in this fine country of ours, there’s a better than average chance that you’ve been drenched with days of rain. 

Floodwaters are only just beginning to recede on the NSW South Coast, Adelaide and Perth copped a dumping yesterday – and even parts of Australia’s usually dry interior were saturated.

It’s all thanks to a couple of atmospheric rivers … which is how meteorologists have described the two massive bands of rain-filled cloud – one on the east coast and one on the west coast – that are drenching the nation this week.

Thousands of kilometres in length, they are said to have dumped more than ‘two Amazon rivers worth of water’ onto us. The Amazon is the largest river in the world [the Nile’s the longest]. So to have the equivalent amount of water in two of them thrown down on us is quite something. A river in the sky. Now I’ve heard everything.




Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops … and today, we’ve landed in Germany … where a lion trainer has started selling lion pooh to ward off cats.

After visitor numbers to the Circus Krone started to drop off because of the coronavirus, the lion trainer started putting lion droppings in jars and selling them for 5 euros a jar.

Why would anyone want to buy a jar of lion pooh? Apparently if you spread it around your garden, it’s really good at keeping the neighbourhood cats away. Which stands to reason. Imagine being a moggie, and thinking the house you were about to wander past had a big cat at home. 




Scientists were yesterday high-fiving each other after discovering that a dwarf planet called Ceres – which they had believed to be just a hunk of space rock – is actually an ocean world with lakes of sea-water under its surface.

What the what? Ceres is a moon-like planet that sits inside an asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. So, a long, long, way away. But since astronomers were able to fly a spacecraft with cameras as close as 35kms to the surface of Ceres, they’ve been able to see that there is salty water bubbling up from the planet’s interior. And that’s a big deal because the minerals in salty water are among the basic building blocks for life. Which means there could be life out there. 

And if you’ve ever watched ET – you’d know that’s totally possible. And you’ve never watched it, there’s a link in today’s episode notes to the trailer. 




It’s a retro edition of Pop Culture Corner today as we celebrate two golden oldies that are enjoying a resurgence of popularity among people your age. 

The first is Phil Collins … he was huge in the eighties, probably still features prominently on your parents’ playlists – and thanks to a set of twins in the US whose YouTube channel features them listening to and reacting to music they’ve never heard before – Phil’s hit, In The Air Tonight – with its iconic drum solo – has shot back into the music charts. Check out the link in today’s episode notes.

And then there’s Flash Gordon … a film from 1980 .. about a comic strip superhero of the same name. One of the lead actors from the film yesterday revealed in an interview that the Queen herself told him the movie is one of her all-time favourite films. And when you see the link to the trailer in today’s episode notes, you’ll wonder if he’s either got a fertile imagination or if the Queen has a wicked sense of humour.




Every Wednesday we stick our head into the Squiz Kids kitchen to see what Squiz Kids ambassador, Rosie, has been cooking up. And this week, it’s jam drops. Who doesn’t love jam drop? Rosie reckons whether it’s for an afternoon snack or a lunchbox treat – jam drops are super easy to make and totally delicious to scoff. She baked a bunch for some friends who came over for a playdate – and says all they left behind was a plate full of crumbs. Which is a sign of a job well done, I’d say. 

The recipe plus photos of the process and finished product are all on the Squiz Kids website.

Don’t forget: if you have a favourite recipe that YOU like to cook that you’d like Rosie to try… AND to feature in this segment – be sure to send it to: [email protected].




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

  1. What animal’s pooh is being collected in jars and sold in Germany?
  2.  What’s the name of the dwarf planet near Jupiter which is thought to be an ocean world?
  3. What is the Queen’s favourite film, according to one of its actors? 




It’s August 12 ….. World Elephant Day – dedicated to the celebration of our pachyderm friends, and to their preservation and protection. There’s a link in today’s episode notes to classroom resources for anyone interested in learning more. 

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

Edward from Double Bay, Koji, Jaimee and Jessie from Abbotsford, Oliver from Putney, Millie from Lane Cove, Sachin from Strathfield, Poppy from Erskineville, Isabel from Morningside, Seth from Greenwood, Ireland from Waramanga, Mason from Redlynch, Abigail from Newcastle, Loki, Luca and Leon (triplets) from Cairns, Jem from Heritage Park, Georgia from Pullenvale, Rowan from Dalkeith, Lily from Beveridge, Chelsea from Sydney and George from Balmain. 

And some belated birthday shoutouts…Knox from Deakin and Georgia from Five Dock 

Happy birthday to you all.

Classroom shoutouts… Year 4 and Year 6 at St Denis Primary School in Joondanna, 1RB and 3B at Bli Bli State School, 4M at St Mary’s Primary School in Kalgoorlie and 3/4M at Gosford East Public School, who have just welcomed new students Toqa and Andres to their class. 


The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Lion
  2. Ceres
  3. Flash Gordon