Page 1

FUN TO READ Esi The Poki Seller.............................................................3 And Mother Said................................................................8 Ekua.......................................................................................9 Crash....................................................................................12 In The Classroom.............................................................13 The Glade...........................................................................14 FUN TO LEARN Teeth...................................................................................18 Food.....................................................................................19 Mixing Materials..............................................................20 Conducting Electricity....................................................21 Skeleton.............................................................................22 Muscles..............................................................................23

JUST FUN STUFF Riddles................................................................................24 ‘Thank You’ Note..............................................................25 My Collection Of Nursery Rhymes...............................................................................26 Brain Play...........................................................................27

Dear Readers,

Let me introduce you

to the very first issue

of and J.S.S. pupils in

AFRIKID children’s

magazine for primary Ghana.

I hope you enjoy the stories, the

poems, etc... and write to us so that we

know what you would like to see more or

less in the next issue which will be available

in 2 months.

I hope you will send in illustrations

and jokes or whatever you wish to appear in the issues to come and also tell us what

good things you learnt from the stories that you read.

Relax and enjoy this first issue and

do tell your friends about it!

Your new friend, Debbie.

AFRIKID children’s magazine May 2007 . Number 1 . Issue Number 1. Editor: Deborah V. Owusu-Bonsu

Art Director: Mr. Albert Puplampu

Authors: Angela Danquah, Prisca Dadson, Deborah V. Owusu-Bonsu, Timothy Adei Artists: Lawrence Sagoe, Timothy Adei, Deborah V. Owusu-Bonsu Designer: Deborah V. Owusu-Bonsu

Copyright © 2007, AFRIKID by the Debrootz Incorporated Publishing Company. All rights reserved. Printed in Ghana. Except as permitted under the Ghana Copyright Act, no part of this publication may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without prior permission of the publisher. Debrootz Incorporated Publishers P.O. Box OS 1288, Osu, Accra Ghana, West Africa

AFRIKID children’s magazine is

here to educate and bring out the creative skills in its readers.


Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology Faculty of Industrial Art College of Art and Social Sciences Department of Publishing Studies Debrootz Incorporated Publishers Tel: +233 21 960541 Mobile: +233 244 960541 Email:

ESI THE POKI SELLER CLOSING TIME Closing time, the school bell rang eight times, immediately accompanied by a crescendo of excited young voices. The bell was rung once to mark each hour and four times at break. Pupils drabbed in yellow and brown uniforms shuffled out of the classrooms towards the pick up area looking like bees to a distant observer. This observer was Esi. Esi watched them filing out as they chatted with friends, laughed, looked for friends in other classrooms, and some rounded up their siblings. As Esi sat in the cool shade of the giant Nim tree she remembered how much fun school had been for her. It made her smile as she got comfortable on one of the tree's roots that stuck out of the earth. She silently gave thanks to the tree for being so generous, for she would have had to also carry a stool all the way from home to rest on. The hot and humid monsoon afternoon will soon send some of the thirsty, hungry, and sweet-toothed busy bees her way. They always came whether they had money or not. Some came to buy on credit and others to sponge off their friends. Esi was a poki seller. She sold frozen delights from chocolate and vanilla ice cream to yoghurt and the most popular, mainly because it was quite affordable, a frozen artificially flavoured Popsicle popularly known as poki. Esi didn't know where poki got its name. All she knew was that the children bought it the most and so she always made sure she stocked her icebox mainly with poki. "Sister Esi good afternoon" said Kofi. He was always one of the first to buy poki and his favourite was the

green one. They didn't even know what fruits they tasted like because most of them only grew naturally in other countries except, orange and pineapple flavour. "Afternoon Kofi, I told you not to call me sister. I'm just one year older than you," said Esi. "Oh me, I call every girl sister because that's how my mother taught me. Can I please get one hard colour green? I'm going to break it in half to share with Sammy" said Kofi. "Ei you are kind paaa, Sammy has never bought some to share with you. As a matter of fact, he even owes for two pokis he got on credit. If I catch him he will see. Tell him I said I know he's dodging me. "Won't the poki even melt by the time you get it to him? You know how he's all over the place," said Esi. "Oh yes, but don't worry, if I finish my half and haven't seen him yet I'll eat all," said Kofi. "Hahahaha! Oh Kofi, you are so funny. Don't forget to ask him about my money oh" Said Esi. Sheila, who had been patiently waiting for her turn to buy ice cream as well, started to laugh too. "Ei Kofi I didn't know you were such a ruffian, but since Sammy is your friend I should have known, birds of a feather...," said Sheila. "You Sheila I won't even mind you snake-under-grass like your type…" said Kofi as he collected his change, the two halves of the glistening green poki and run off. "Eyi…eyi…snake under cement!" chased Sheila's words after Kofi, but he was slurping his green sugar ice block too loudly for Sheila's words to tickle his eardrums. "Boys, Sister Esi you know you shouldn't have given credit to that rascal Sammy. Everyone knows he goes about life as if his head were stuck in an ostrich's bottos" said Sheila. "Oh hoh, Sister Sheila! Where in


the clouds or stars did you get such a picture? By the way I haven't seen you there in almost two weeks. Why? Have you been doing susu?" asked Esi. "Oh no sister Esi, times are getting hard so I've been cutting back small small. You know how I like my Fanice. Only drastic times will prevent me from buying some." answered Sheila. "Hmm‌tell me about it. When I finished J.S.S. last year, my parents couldn't afford for me to continue S.S.S. right away so I'm selling poki to enable me help to pay for my school fees next year." said Esi. "Oh so you will become my mate right?" asked Sheila as she took her Fanice from Esi and sat on the protruding root next to her. Esi kept selling to the other pupils as she and Sheila talked. "Yes, but luckily I was promoted in class two so missing one year should not be too bad," said Esi. "Yes but being out of school for a


while will make you forget some things or even make you lazy or?" asked Shelia. "It's possible, but me I'll keep going over my J.S.S notes and read ahead so that by the time I get back into school I will at least be abreast of my class. By the end of the year my family and I would have enough saved up to pay my fees for at least two of the first three terms," said Esi. "Ei what about the rest!" asked Sheila as she ate her fan ice and drew net patterns with her wet fingers on red dust that had collected on her black patent shoes. "God will provide. We shall see. Small small" responded Esi, wiping green poki juice off her knife with her cloth. "So what secondary school was your first choice? Me I want to go to Wey Gey Hey," said Sheila. "Oh me I chose Abugees, I really like it up there in the mountains and it's neither too far nor too close to

home� said Esi. "That's true. What did you get for B.E.C.E?" asked Sheila. "Nine ones and a two in French" said Esi. "Ei sharp brain! Oh sister Esi that's very good oh. Congrats! It's a pity that some people who don't have sharp brain will go and waste school fees whiles you are here trying to make money to go to school" pointed out Sheila. "Hmm. I'm sure God has a plan for me so I'll just be patient" said Esi. "Ei even my car has come," said Sheila getting up suddenly. Her father's car had just turned into the school gate and was headed to the pick up spot, but stopped soon as Sheila's dad spotted her by the tree with Esi. "Sheila hurry up and get your bag, we have to pick up your brother from Day Care. "How are you doing?" boomed Sheila's dad. "Fine thank you sir," replied Esi waving to Sheila as Sheila walked away quickly with her head tilted way up, draining the rest of her Fanice down her throat like a nearly empty tube of the most edible toothpaste. A few more pupils came to buy poki including two teachers. Thanks to the scorching sun today too she had sold everything she had brought. Her customers couldn't resist the cooling effect the poki had in the palms of their hands, the sweet taste on their tongues, and the soothing sensation it gave the body as it slid down their thirsty throats. She heard the crows begin to gather in the crown of the tree she was under, so she decided it would be best to leave before the omen birds exorcised their undigested food on her. Just as she stood up, she noticed Sammy walking over. "Ei Sammy you are still here. I thought I saw your car coming to pick They carried the box back to the

you up," said Esi. "I'm sure it came, but I was in the back playing ball so they probably left without me. "Have you seen Kofi?" he asked. Kofi was dirty and sweating as usual from playing soccer in the school park under such unforgiving sunshine. "Yes, he came to buy poki right after closing time and went off looking for you," said Esi. "Oh then by now he has eaten all without me," Said Sammy. "Ah, was he supposed to hold it till it melted? It's not his fault that you are all over the place and nowhere to be seen," said Esi. "Sister Esi please give me on credit and I will pay you tomorrow. I'm very very thirsty," pleaded Sammy. "I sold everything I brought today oh Sammy, sorry," said Esi. "Oh sister Esi, is it because of the money I owe you for the other two? I promise I will pay all tomorrow including this one," implored Sammy. "Oh no, that's not why, I'm really out of everything. I wasn't raised to just watch another suffer whiles I had the means to help. I was about to pour out the melted ice block and go home. If you help me I can give you some of the ice blocks in a cup and you can add water from the school pipe," offered Esi. "Oh ok, where should we pour it?" asked Sammy. "Let's pour it in the bush behind the tree. The water is sweet because sometimes the half pokies leak, so if we pour it too close to where I sit, ants will take over my spot," said Esi as she picked up one side of the icebox whiles Sammy got the handle on the other end. They swung the box over behind the tree and tilted it towards the bush. "Whoosh!" the water rushed out and both Sammy and Esi quickly stepped back to avoid getting their feet wet.


clearing and Esi started scooping out some ice into her red plastic cup for Sammy. "Sister Esi you try paa, because from the weight of the almost empty box as at now, I can imagine how heavy it is for you especially when you bring it full from home. And also you are a girl so…" "Sammy just go and drink your water and bring me back my cup. I'm hot and tired and I want to go home now. Please bring me some of the water when you have finished drinking, ok?" "Okay," said Sammy in a distant and hollowed voice as he sucked on one of the ice blocks trying to keep his teeth from cracking. Esi looked off into the windows of the classrooms that were now as empty as her stomach. Sammy was coming back with the water, it should trick her stomach long enough till she got home to prepare something for supper.


Sammy looked like a typical ruffian with his shirt not tucked in. The other pupils said that the bottom of his shirt hardly stayed behind his belt even when classes were still ongoing. "Thank you Sammy," said Esi as she took the cup from his hand, took a good look to make sure the water was as clear as could be, and added some more ice to replace what had been melted or chewed by Sammy. "Don't mention," said Sammy. The water should be really chilled by now, she thought, and begun to take a drink. "Okay sister Esi, then tomorrow. Oh do you need me to ‘taylay’ you?" asked Sammy. "Oh hoh! What does that mean?" asked Esi. "It's Ga, I want to know if you need me to help you carry the box onto your head," said Sammy looking up as the congregation of crows got louder. "You know you are not allowed to

"You know you are not allowed to speak the local languages when you are at school. Only the Queen's English," she said brushing her moist lips and nose against her shirtsleeve. "Well our Queen speaks Ga and that's the only Queen I know," said Sammy as he walked off in the direction of his house. His father was an African Studies lecturer at the University of Ghana, Legon and had really made it a point to teach Sammy to believe in his culture. "Oh no Sammy thanks, it's much lighter now so I can manage." Esi put the box on her head and headed home, contemplating her need of a much bigger box as she walked the busy streets. "But will I be able to carry it?" she thought to herself.

Written by Deborah V. Owusu-Bonsu Illustrated by Lawrence Sagoe


ESI'S HOME Esi lived in a lively neighbourhood close to the Achimota Taxi Rank & trotro station. It was always so busy that her thoughts often got interrupted by piercing announcements from trotro mates, food sellers, hawkers, horns, & the tired sputters of old engines. Esi's stomach begun to speak the only words it knew to her and that she understood well. She hoped her mother had prepared something to eat today because she didn't have enough energy to walk back to the station to buy food. "Ma! Ma I'm home oh! Ma!" announced Esi. She was about to knock on her parent's door, but decided against it. They were probably asleep and if there was any food it would be in the kitchen, else there would be money on the table for kenkey and fish. Their house was a compound house with no surrounding wall or gate; the bathroom, kitchen, living room and bedrooms all had their own doors accessible from the outside, so you had to come out of one room into the compound to enter another. Her parent's room, however, had another door inside that connected it to the living room. The kitchen door smelled like okro soup as she opened it, her favorite, with tilapia, snails, crabs, and banku. How lovely - Esi washed her hands at the sink and put some of the food into a clean aluminum pan then went outside to sit on a cement block in the compound close to the roadside and enjoyed her evening meal as she watched the human and machine traffic ensue. DO FIND OUT WHAT HAPPENS IN THE CHAPTERS TO COME!!!



When I was a child Young, sweet and mild I fell to the ground With a thud-like sound While running around the house Like a stampede of cows I thought I was dead And mother said Why the rush my dear son There are more days to come with the sun The world is full of races But life … never races When I was a child Still very mild I wanted to be boss To avoid my household chores School I thought was a bore From day one to the core My thoughts were read And mother said Your thoughts have been read Actions speak louder than words One day you will learn my son That education and duty make a man When I was a child Moving from mild I felt on top of the world A teenager’s world The rebellious stage That respects no age Advice went unheard And mother said Words of advice When spoken to the wise Are sieved to separate the chaff From what is good enough When I was a child Changed to wild Life I thought was fun And mine alone to run The older folks were old Only had stories to be told I never really cared And mother said


They may be stories That will save you worries Learn from their mistakes And suffer less heartaches

I’m no longer a child Neither mild nor wild Facing the realities of life I now have a wife All has gone well A nice story to tell Thanks to where I was bred And what mother said Mother continues to say To praise the Lord each day For He is my strength and shield And the foundation of all I build Written by Angela Danquah Illustrated by Deborah V. Owusu-Bonsu

EKUA In a town called Ahenkrom, there once lived a rich merchant named Agya Ampim Assin and his lovely wife Attaa. They had a very beautiful daughter called Ekua. Ekua's beauty was as radiant as the morning sun and she captured the hearts of many whenever she smiled. Attaa owned a clothing shop in the centre of the village and everyone knew her as 'Etam Wura'. She was very friendly and gave equal attention to all people. She joined in every social activity and donated to the poor in the village. The Assin family also owned a big farm which brought them much income. However, the village ‘hawks and crows’ could not get enough of their flesh. They envied the Assin family and coveted their wealth. This was so intense that, they wished the family dead. There was this particular woman named Auntie Ama who would spend her last penny in ensuring that the Assin family become poor. Years went by and Ekua grew to become more and more beautiful. She had a lovely voice which would lift the spirit of a sad man. One day whiles Attaa was in the kitchen preparing some food, Ekua was in her bedroom singing this lovely song; "The clouds are clear, the winds are fresh. God grant us grace to carry us through the day." Once Attaa heard the song, she quickly stopped what she was doing and went straight to Ekua. "My daughter, what a lovely voice you have" said Attaa. Walking closer to Ekua, she held her daughter's hand and said to her

"Make sure nobody hears your lovely voice" do not sing for people to hear but wait when the need arises, then you can sing as long as you can. Ekua looked at her mother and signed, for at that point in time, Ekua did not understand why her mother spoke such words. All Ekua could say was "Yes Mama". One unfortunate day, the most terrible incident happened. Agya Ampim and Attaa on their way home from the city were killed in a motor accident. Morning suddenly turned into night for poor Ekua. Too soon, the family of Agya Ampim together with Auntie Ama came to


Ekua's home to hold a meeting. Ekua being only sixteen years of age did not understand the implications of the meeting. She thought the family will cater for her needs. Sadly, this was not the case. The family had bad intensions for her. They asked Auntie Ama, the village hawk to take care of Ekua, whiles they split the rest of the money and property amongst the family members. Ekua will get nothing for herself, except for the capital that would be given to Auntie Ama to cater for her needs. This was a cruel decision but Ekua had no where else to go. Living with Auntie Ama was hell for Ekua. She was made to do all the household chores, sweep the entire

compound and fetch firewood for cooking. Ekua stopped school because Auntie Ama said she had important things to do with the money. Ekua cried every night and wished her parents were still alive. One fateful day, whiles Ekua was washing her clothes, Auntie Ama approached Ekua and asked her to stop what she was doing and fetch some fire wood for food. Ekua looked up and said "the firewood which I left yesterday will be enough for today's food" and within a split second, a heavy hand landed on her cheeks. "What are you trying to tell me? Do you think I am a fool and I cannot see what will be enough for tomorrow? Come on, stop what you are doing and go and get that firewood. "I am very sorry" replied Ekua. I will do that when I finish washing the clothes for I am very tired and may break down on my way." Auntie Ama could not believe what she had just heard, she quickly took her slippers and gave Ekua a sound beating. "Never talk back to me, you poor Orphan. I do not know why I put up with you. Wait for me here, I will be back" Auntie Ama retorted. On her return, she pulled Ekua by her hands and started heading towards the forest with her. They walked for a long while till they finally reached an old crabby hut sitting in the centre of the thick forest. Auntie Ama took a key out of her pocket and opened the doors of the hut. She tied Ekua's wrists and ankles with a rope and threw her inside the hut and shouted "Never speak back to me again. This is the punishment you receive for being a rude girl". Ekua begun to cry and started pleading for forgiveness. Her tiny voice could not be


He shouted from outside, "Who is this that has such a wonderful voice?" "It is me Ekua" Ekua replied. Why do you live in this forest? Are your parents here too? Ekua begun to cry whiles she narrated the entire story to the hunter. The hunter felt sorry for her and decided to rescue Ekua out of her misery. He broke the locks of the door and untied the ropes from her wrist and ankles and took Ekua by her hand. "Cry no more my daughter, for I will help you" said the hunter. The hunter took Ekua back to the village and took good care of Ekua till she regained her strength and became healthy once more. During this era, the king had sent a message to the people of the village telling them about the need for his son to find a wife. He needed a woman who is extraordinary and can make his son happy.

heard for Auntie Ama was long gone. Weeks passed by and Ekua was still in the hut. She would sing till she got tired and finally return to sleep. She tried several times to untie the knots of the rope but her efforts seemed to be in vain. Ekua was getting hungry and she knew sooner or later she would die out of hunger. She always prayed to God to send His angels to rescue her. On one fateful day, a hunter was walking deep in the forest in search of game when he heard a very sweet voice coming from the forest. He followed the voice with curiosity till he got to the hut where Ekua was kept.

Many women had tried with no success. Ekua decided to try her luck. She went to the palace and introduced herself. As soon as she spoke, everyone turned to look at her. They were marvelled at her beauty and poise. Ekua asked to sing a song and whiles she sung, the king, prince and all of the people at the palace fell in love with her voice. Without a second of doubt, they knew that Ekua was the girl for the prince. Ekua married the prince and became wealthy. The village vultures, in true style became ashamed and transformed into mockingbirds, constantly singing sweet praises about the prince and her love for Ekua. As for Auntie Ama, she was banished from the village when they found out what she had done to Ekua. Written by Prisca C. Dadson Illustrated by Deborah V. Owusu-Bonsu




Created by Timothy Adei and Reviewed by Deborah V. Owusu-Bonsu



Find out who saves the day today!













Brighten someone’s day by sending a thank-you note for a gift you received on your birthday or at Easter or at Christmas. Here are some quick tips:

De ar Gr a gav Tha ndm a Mention the Mu e me nk yo , Share some gift mm uf on W o news about rt e b y he my B l y o yourself. est ugh ped irth he a erd t m me day kwa ab a ad Th y. W ateri sew . Tr a oll is a ad e you sto e F wee had ls fr dres o a k s r a m i Thank yb e r f ook . I c nd w lot o the or it them an e f m . Th I h Tell how again. ank ope sect ’t wa are fun. arke you’ve used io g t it sa to oing it. gai you a n. see to nf re or d the the oing do wel l. ll. Wish L Ak ove, osu a

the person well.



Brain Play

Start at the beginning and see how far you can go, thinking of good answers from your own head.

Which is bigger, a calf or a cow?

What happens inside a piano to make the sound? Name a few questions you can ask to get to know someone better.

Can you describe in words exactly how you are feeling? Why or why not?

Where might you be if you can hear an echo?

Does a dog weigh more when it is wet or dry? Why?

Why don’t we use glue to fasten clothes?

How many wheels are on a tricycle? On a bicycle? A unicycle?

If you could make a big billboard for your town, what would it say? Can you touch a rainbow?

Name several events for which people might throw a party.

What does it mean to have courage?

Tell some things that make you think of your family.

Imagine riding in a rocket the size of a groundnut shell. Where could you explore?

If you hear that something is ‘super,’ what does that tell you about it?

What would happen if we used a broom to clean off shelves?

Name three sounds a car makes.

If you could program a robot to do just one thing for you, what would you choose? What kinds of things might be for sale at a zoo gift shop?

“I have something exciting to tell you!” said Akosua. “I’m all ears,” answered Paapa. What did he mean?

Imagine that all foods tasted the same. What might be different about the way we’d eat?

AFRIKID children’s magazine is

here to educate and bring out the cre-

ative skills in its readers.





My final year project in 2007 from The College of Art, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology in Publishing Studies (B.A.)