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How to be a superhero

Author

Bubele Retshe

Illustrator

Jiggs Snaddon-Wood

Timo lived in a small village surrounded by mountains, green fields and beautiful forests, but his favourite place was the park. He loved it there because he felt like a superhero when he ran around, climbed on the jungle gym and spun on the merry-go-round.

Every day when Timo came home from school, he would get changed out of his school uniform and eat the delicious sandwich that his grandmother had made for him. Then he would do his homework and, when it was done, he would rush outside shouting, “Granny, Granny, it’s playtime!”

And Granny would call after him, “Timo, wait! Don’t you want me to read you a story?”“No, Granny, I need to play and explore,” Timo would reply, already on his way to meet his friends who were waiting for him at the gate.

“There are many places that you can explore in storybooks, Timo,” Granny would say. “Books can teach you lots of things and take you to places that you have never been.”Timo would giggle and say, “Granny, books can’t take me anywhere. Only cars can do that!” Then he would run off down the road to the park with his friends.One afternoon, Timo’s best friend, Ben, was waiting for him at the gate.“Hey, Timo, are you ready to play?” asked Ben.

“I’m always ready,” said Timo racing down the street with his best friend. They both wanted to get to the park first.When they got there, Timo’s other friends were waiting for them. Pamela was sitting on the swing crying, while Noma and Siya were standing next to her. They looked worried.

Timo moved closer to find out what was going on. “What happened to Pamela?” he asked.

“She was on the swing and Siya accidently pushed it too hard. Pamela fell off the swing and now her knee is bleeding,” explained Noma.“Oh no! What are we going to do?” asked Ben.“It’s okay, I know what to do,” said Noma reaching for her backpack and taking out a small bag.

“What is that?” Timo asked.

“It’s a first aid kit. I will clean Pamela’s knee and then put on this plaster so that it feels better,” said Noma.

The friends were surprised that Noma knew exactly what to do. Once the plaster was on, Pamela said she felt much better and she wanted to play again. All the friends felt happy and relieved and they thanked Noma.All the friends raced over to the jungle gym – except Timo. He was wondering how Noma had known what to do. He wanted to know where you could learn these kinds of things because superheroes are supposed to know how to help people!

 

Timo walked over to where Noma was climbing and asked, “Noma, how did you know what to do?”Noma smiled and said, “I read it in a storybook.”

“You learnt all of that from reading a storybook?” asked Timo. He wasn’t sure he could believe what Noma had said.“Yes, Timo. I want to be a doctor when I grow up so that I can help people. When I read storybooks, I learn about how doctors help people,” said Noma.

Timo was amazed! “I want to be a superhero and help people too. Do you think storybooks could help me do that?” he asked.“Yes, of course!” said Noma. “Storybooks can teach you lots of things. Just get them from the library and start reading.”

The next day, when he got home from school, Timo changed out of his school uniform and ate the delicious sandwich that his grandmother had made for him. Then he did his homework.He had just finished when Granny called him. “Timo, your friends are here. They are waiting for you to go to the park with them.”

“Please tell them I will join them later, Granny,” answered Timo.

 

Granny could not believe her ears! Timo was always in a hurry to go to the park. “Why aren’t you going right now?” she asked.“I’d like you to read me a story before I go, please,” said Timo.Granny smiled happily. “That’s new! Why do you want me to read you a story today?” she asked.

“Because Noma says stories can teach me how to be a superhero and help my friends,” Timo said as he jumped up and down excitedly.

“That’s my boy!” said Granny as she picked up a storybook.So, Granny and Timo sat down together and read that storybook – and another, and another. And every afternoon after that, before Timo went to play in the park, he asked Granny to read to him.