Wednesday, 23 June, 2021

Reef report card scores an F; Denmark’s reversal of fortune; Ben Simmons’ Olympics in doubt; and the elephant in the room. 



Coral bleaching video

Denmark celebrates Euro2020 win

Elephant stages kitchen invasion


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Just as you lot are all preparing to receive your mid-year school reports, Australia received a report from the United Nations yesterday about our management of the Great Barrier Reef – and the report card said: could do better.

The United Nations is the name of an organisation which is made up of all the countries of the world. It’s a place where decisions are made by countries about what’s best for our planet and the people who live on it. 

Yesterday, a committee within the United Nations said that unless some big changes were made to the way we look after the Reef, it would place it on an international ‘danger list’. 

Climate change was given as the reason the reef was in danger – as rising sea temperatures have caused no fewer than 3 coral bleaching events in the past six years. Coral bleaching happens when the water is too warm and coral  spit out the algae that normally lives inside them and keeps them healthy. 

The government in Canberra wasn’t having any of it though yesterday – saying that they were doing a good job at managing the health of the reef, and that the warning by the United Nations was motivated by politics, the fact that China sits at the head of the committee, and right now things between China and Australia are complicated. 

I’ve stuck a link in today’s episode notes to a video explaining coral bleaching.




Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops – and today we’ve landed in Denmark .. where celebrations are continuing in the capital city, Copenhagen after the national football team pulled off a stunning victory to advance to the knockout stage of the Euro 2020 competition.

Now why is this a thing? Because two weeks ago, in one of their first matches against Finland, the Danish team was rocked when their star midfielder, Christian Eriksen collapsed mid-game – having suffered a cardiac arrest.

Cardiac arrest is the medical term to describe what happens when your heart stops. And – not to put too fine a point on it – it’s not good. 

Luckily for Christian – and all of his very concerned team mates – he was whisked to hospital where is now recovering well. Phew.

And so for the Danes – which is what we call people from Denmark – to make it to the final 16 – is a really big achievement for the country. There’s a link to video of the celebrations in today’s episode notes. 

Next up: the Danes take on Wales in Amsterdam on Sunday for a place in the quarter finals. Game on.




He’s one of our most successful basketball exports – he plays point guard for the Philadelphia 76ers – and until yesterday – he was all but confirmed to take to the court with the Boomers and compete for gold for Australia at the Tokyo Olympics. 

So the rumours that were swirling yesterday that Ben Simmons is reconsidering whether he will go to Tokyo and slip on the green and gold, left Aussie basketball fans hanging on the edge of their seats. 

Ben’s team were knocked out of NBA Finals contention at the weekend, with the Aussie point guard coming under criticism for not playing his best game. Hey – we all have off-games. They’re just harder to justify at the elite level of sport. 

Australia finished fourth at the Rio Olympics – only just missing out on a medal. A situation they’re really hoping to change in Tokyo. As they say in the classics – watch this space …




A family in Thailand got the surprise of their lives this week when they heard noises in their kitchen in the middle of the night – only to discover an elephant had stuck its head through a hole in the wall and was helping itself to a snack.

The householders were woken up by the sounds of pots and pans falling from shelves and onto the floor. They rushed into the kitchen to see a full-grown elephant’s head poking through the wall – with its trunk searching shelves for something to eat.

Gives new meaning to the expression: elephant in the room ..

National park rangers say that wild elephants coming in to villages in search of food was common in that part of Thailand – where farmers were often chasing the pachyderms off their property. What’s a pachyderm? That’s the scientific name for an elephant .. and i just like saying the word because I like the way it sounds.  




Are you getting ready for the school holidays? Woo-hoo! How good are school holidays? Don’t forget to subscribe to Squiz Kids on whatever podcasting app you prefer before you go on hols – because we’ll be dropping a couple of school holiday quizzes to keep you entertained. Nah – don’t mention it…




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

  1. Which famous natural wonder do we need to take better care of according to a United NAtions report?
  2. Which country has just advanced to the final 16 of Euro 2020 after a rocky start to the competition?
  3. What sort of animal has been caught raiding a Thai kitchen for a midnight snack? 




It’s June 23 … today is Olympic Day … commemorating the formation of the International Olympic Committee almost 130 years ago. 

It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today… Elsie from Fadden, Henry from Curtin, Liam from West Pennant Hills, Tammy from Calamvale, Ruby from Malanda, Sahebjot from Melbourne, Amelia from Bendigo, Max from Albury, Garry from Christies Beach, Summer from Sheoak Grove and Molly from Hadspen.

Belated birthday shout outs to  Josh from Randwick, Amali from NSW, Sahara from Geraldton and Josh from Randwick

Classroom shoutouts … Class S3K with Mrs Kenning and Ms Shackleton from Blackwell Public School, Mrs T’s 4B class and Mrs Venius’ 5B class from Hilliard State School, all the Year 4 kids at Carnaby Rise Primary School, and class 4/5T from Glen Innes Public School. And a special Squiz Kids shoutout to Annemieke and her class Group 4 at the Regenboog school in the Netherlands, which means Rainbow in Dutch. 


The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. The Great Barrier Reef
  2. Denmark
  3. Elephant