Wednesday, 17 March, 2021

Helping our overseas neighbours; Spain’s three day weekends; all the Oscar nominated kids’ movies; and flying with the world’s biggest insect.



Meet the weta: the world’s biggest insect:

Weta on a plane:

Oscars animated film nominees:

Over The Moon:

Shaun The Sheep:




Q+A Tiger Keeper Call-Out

Tiger Cubs: 

Facts about Sumatran tigers: 

Taronga Tiger Cam 1:

Taronga Tiger Cam 2:


Squiz Kids Instagram:

Got a birthday coming up and you want a shout-out? Send us an email at [email protected]

Squiz Kids is proudly supported by the Judith Neilson Institute for Journalism and Ideas.






If you looked at a map of Australia, there’s a stretch of water off the north tip of Queensland called the Torres Strait. There are lots of islands in the Torres Strait – and the people who live on those islands are Australian citizens.

Some of the islands, despite being part of Australia, are really, really close to Papua New Guinea – our closest neighbouring country. Some are so close you can see the PNG coastline across the water on a clear day. Despite the fact that PNG is really close to Australia, its health system is not quite as advanced as the one we have. And it’s a poorer country. So they haven’t been able to fight off COVID as successfully as we have here. 

As a result, there has been an alarming increase in the number of recorded COVID cases there. An increase that has seen the Australian government send equipment and people there to help out and hopefully prevent it from hopping across the Torres Strait into Australia. 

There are also moves afoot for us to send vaccines to PNG’s frontline health workers – doctors and nurses fighting the outbreak. 

It’s part of a wider effort by Australia to make sure all of its neighbours in the South Pacific are looked after in the pandemic – whether via help with vaccines or other support. Because we’re a bigger, richer country than most of the countries in the South Pacific, it’s our responsibility – just like a big brother or sister would look after their smaller siblings – to look out for our neighbour. Because who doesn’t want to be a good neighbour?




Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops. And today we’ve landed in Spain — ahhh, beautiful Spain. Where I have decided I am going to live – after news this week that the country is considering a working week that will only be four days long. What a marvelous decision! You know how the traditional working week tends to be from Monday to Friday – with a two day weekend? The Spanish government is going to trial a four day work week, with a three day weekend. Aye caramba! Where do I sign up? 

It’s thought that the COVID pandemic and working from home has proven that people can get just as much work done in four days as they can in five. And the addition of an extra day to every weekend can only be good for the mental health of the nation. Pass the tapas and pour me a sangria. If you need me I’ll be on a plane to Spain … oh wait … we can’t leave the country yet. Sorry guys -you’re stuck with me for five days a week. 




You know when you get on a plane and you sit down and you think: I wonder who I am going to be sharing this row of seats with? Well – one passenger aboard an Air New Zealand flight yesterday was surprised – some might say horrified – to discover she was sharing her flight with the world’s biggest insect … an animal called a weta. 

It was perched beside her on the wall of the plane’s interior. And given these insects are about the size of a large mouse and have huge pincers – that’s quite the surprising fellow passenger.

The weta was coaxed into a sick bag mid-flight and released back into the wild when the plane touched down.

And because I had never heard of this creature before: I did some research and have put a link to a video explainer in today’s episode notes. It’s quite the creature … 




It’s Oscars time people! The Oscars are the big awards given out to movies and actors and actresses and movie makers in general. And yesterday, the nominees for the 2021 awards were announced. Black Panther actor, the late Chadwick Boseman received a best actor nomination. When people say ‘the late’ before someone’s name, it means that person has passed away – which Chadwick sadly did last August. 

In the Animated Film category, the movies fighting it out for an Oscar this year are the Pixar flicks Soul and Onward; a movie called Wolfwalkers; a Netflix movie called Over The Moon; and Shaun The Sheep’s Farmageddon – which looks super cool.

There are links, of course, to the trailer of each one of these films. So if you really behave in class or at home, your teacher or relevant adult person might let you watch them and make your own decision about which one should win. Enjoy!




Here’s a question for you … what’s better than one Squiz Kids Q+A? Two Squiz Kids Q+As .. because that’s exactly what we have in store for you before the Easter school holidays arrive. 

So you know we’ve lined up Taronga Zoo tiger keeper, Louise Ginman to answer your questions next week? Keep those excellent questions coming in …

Well – we’ve decided to stuff the Q+A schedule to overflowing and have invited kids author extraordinaire, Andy Griffiths to return to the Q+A hot seat and tell you all about his brand new book – the Treehouse Joke book. 

How cool is that? 

But instead of sending Andy questions: we want you to send him your best joke .. and he will judge them and hand out a very special prize to the one that makes him laugh so hard he falls off his chair. 

So – you have your marching orders. Those of you wanting to know all about the tiger world and zookeeping – send your questions to Louise. And those of you who think you’ve got Australia’s funniest joke up their sleeve – send that through for Andy Griffiths to judge.

Two cool Q+As – one easy email address: [email protected]!

Get to it!




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

  1. What’s the name of the country to Australia’s north currently fighting off a COVID outbreak?
  2. Which country is about to introduce a four-day working week?
  3. Name the animated sheep who’s movie Farmageddon has just received an Oscar nomination.




It’s March 17   … top of the mornin’ to you, because it’s St Patrick’s Day .. a very important day for people from Ireland – and a day that’s celebrated all over the world with the wearing of green. 

It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today… Leon from Fairfield Heights, Dominic from Rockhampton, Eloise from Craigburn, Beau from Edithvale, Teddy from Melbourne, Ava from Queen’s Park, Benny from Hunters Hill, Anthony from Kempsey, Eliza from Williamstown, Astrid from Bathurst, Sahana from NSW and Eve from Jindalee.

And some belated birthday shoutouts to… Michelle from Stockton, Mia from Brisbane, Nimrat from Abbotsford and Ayden from Sydney. 

Happy birthday one and all.

And some special shout outs to these Squiz Kids, whose parents did us a big favour this week: Evan from Surrey Hills, Emma from Broadford, Christina and George from Balmoral, Liam, Ben and Josh from Toowoomba, Eleanor from Mitcham, Noah and Mya from Naremburn, Evie from Brighton, Bella and Charlotte from Randwick, Hope and Eve from Kew East, Justin and Mac from Middle Park, Ollie and Georgie from Canberra, Xavier & Hannah from Fairlight, Oliver and Hamish from Birchgrove, Finn from Murwillumbah, Maiya (pronounced like department store Myer) from Canberra, Astrid and Rachel from Woodend, Theo & Quin from Frenchs Forest and Griffyn from Coochiemudlo Island

Today’s classroom shoutouts… class 5/6G, Mrs Divis’s 5/6D class and all the stage 3 classes at Abbotsford Public School, Mrs Bradshaw and 5/6B from Illaroo Road Public School, Ms Geller’s Year 5/6 Class at Hopetoun Primary School and a special shoutout to Mrs Bear from Trinity Catholic School in Harden, who is celebrating a birthday today. 

The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Papua New Guinea
  2. Spain 
  3. Shaun The Sheep