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17th January 1999
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Junior Times

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Hello Children,

Since the holiday spirit is now all gone and everybody's back to work, you must have also settled down in your new class.

Well although things are back to normal with you sometimes things might be a bit difficult with others. I read an article recently about a grandmother who spoke of how her children have all gone away and are doing their work and her grandchilren too are very busy with their friends and studies and she says 'I don't have any company anymore.'

Well this is a sad situation isn't it? Children if you have a grandmother or grandfather do find the time to go and see them 'cos they enjoy just a bit your time and love which they seek at this lonely age. 

So while you are enjoying yourself and working hard please don't forget these lovely old poeple for they are truly special. You'll not know it until it's too late.

Until next time 
Aunty Sunshine

Caring for the old

Caring for the old is very important. For most people their own works are more important than their parents. Parents look after their children lovingly when they are small. But when they grow up they forget their elders and put them into Elders homes. That's why there are lot of Elders homes in our country. 

Children who don't look after their parents might have the same problem when they become adults their children also will do the same thing to them.

So therefore we have to take care of our elders when they're unable to do their own work. For example we can bathe them and when they fall sick we can take them to the doctor and also we can feed them too. Sometimes they get angry but at that time we mustn't argue with them. We must try to bear it and be patient. 

So I think we must take care of our elders and do our very best for them. 

Himashi Alwis
Holy Family Convent - Bambalapitiya

A little bird

A little birdMy dear bird, 
We tried to protect you
But you were too stubborn. 
Please forgive my cat
He doesn't know, 
What is good or bad. 
He only wants to hunt you. 
Your friends were chirping, 
They know that you're
Now they will go everywhere
Without you
Your grave will always
be here
So little bird go 
Have a good life.

Kushani Abeyratne 
Southlands College

My school

My school is Holy Cross Convent. It is situated in the Gampaha district. It is a big school in the western province. There are many students in my school. The principal of my school is sister Nelli Helen. We have many classes. Our classrooms are neat and tidy. We play games and go out on picnics. We learn good manners. In our school we have a library, a playground and a laboratory. So we can play and study. I love my school very much.

Anne Gomis 
Holy Cross Convent - Gampaha 

Best wishes for 1999

One year has passed
A new year to start, 
Put anger to an end
Make your enemy your fiend. 
I know we all wish
That war will stop, 
And that unity and peace
Will come to the top. 
The year we should spend
With joy and happiness, 
And tear away all
Sorrow and sadness. 
We could help the unfortunate
And enjoy ourselves too
"I wish a happy and prosperous new year to all of you" 

Thamali Jayasinghe
Lyceum International School

Dazzling D.D

Damayanthi Darsha
Asia's running queen
Made history again
At the 13th Asian Games
Yes, she's the proud daughter
Among the children of our mother Sri Lanka
No one thought 
The wild flower' of Ampara, would be the
Hurricane at "Rajmangal' with 
Incredible talents and unbreakable records. 
Damayanthi the Dazzling Queen
Asia's first to win a 'double' at the track
Reminded China and Asia
That the pearl of the Indian Ocean
Has her sons and daughters
As strong as the lion of her forefathers. 

Udana Livera
Joseph Vaz College 

Cinderella and the wedding Ball

There was a beauty named Cinderella
She had two wicked sisters called Lizzy and Bella
But she was treated as a rat
Let's take her sissies as the cat. 
Once Snow-White gve them a phone call
To invite the three to her wedding ball
At the ball there was Aladdin, Jasmin and Robin Hood, 
Alice, Sleeping Beauty and Red Riding Hood, 
But Cindy was the prettiest of them all
she was the belle of the ball
The genie appeared in a double
On his head were the happy couple. 
The seven dwarfs were the page boys
And Minnie sang in a great voice
But oh!.. the tragedy was 
When the prince broke the laws
When he kissed the beauty
And it was no one but CINDY!!
He left pretty Snow White
Who was his bride
And took Cindy on a magic carpet ride
Now this tragedy of the wedding
Made the newspaper heading
And so this story ended
But it will never be mended. 

Muzleena Mazamil 
and Zainab Ishak 
Bishop's College 

Stamp News 50

Our leaders

Among our leaders, the two persons who have been featured on stamps most are the first Prime Minister, Rt Hon Don Stephen Senanayake (1884-1952) and the fourth Prime Minister Solomon West Ridgeway Dias Bandaranaike (1899-1959).

Several stamps have been released to commemorate them. Birth centenaries of both have also been marked by the issue of special stamps. Two stamps (Rs 3.50 each, the current postal rate for letters) to mark the centenary of the birth anniversary of Prime Minister Bandaranaike were released on 8 January 1998. Four stamps ( 35 cts - the then postal rate, 60 cts, Rs 4.60 & Rs 6) were issued on 20 October 1984 to commemorate the birth centenary of Prime Minister Senanayake.

Among the four stamps issued on 4 February 1949 to mark the first anniversary of Independence were two (5 & 25 cts stamps) featuring D S Senanayake. This was the first time that a Sri Lankan personality was used for a stamp. Earlier the stamps had a portrait of the King of England. This was because Sri Lanka (then Ceylon) was a Crown Colony in the British empire and the King was the head of State. He was represented by a Governor resident in this country.

Along with the Prime Minister's portrait on each stamp, the Senanayake birth centenary stamps featured scenes close to his heart. One stamp featured the old Parliament building symbolising his close relations with the legislature since 1924 when he was elected to the Legislative Council as member for Negombo district. When the first General Election to the State Council was held in 1931 under the Donoughmore Constitution, he was elected uncontested as member for Minuwangoda. His unanimous election as Chairman of the Executive Committee made him Minister of Agriculture & Lands. His close association with irrigation and colonisation schemes were depicted in the other three stamps. 

The two Bandaranaike birth centenary stamps featured his portrait as did the first stamp issued in his honour on his birthday in 1961. Subsequent issues also bore his portrait. The 10 cts stamp released on 1 September 1970 to mark the establishment of the United Front government featured the people's victory march (reminiscent of the landslide victory of the Mahajana Eksath Peramuna in 1956 led by Bandaranaike) with an inset picture of the late Prime Minister. That was the climax in his long political career having comeinto the State Council unopposed as member for Veyangoda in 1931 and 1936. He served as Minister of Local Government (1936-1947) and as Minister of Health & Local Government (1947-1951). 

The first Sri Lankan Governor-General, Sir Oliver Goonetilleke (1892-1978) and the first President, William Gopallawa (1897-1981) have also been honoured with issues of special stamps. So are Prime Ministers Dudley Senanayake, Sir John Kotelawela and Sirimavo Bandaranaike. 

Nature WatchPlant-eating mammals

Even-toed ungulates are plant-eating mammals which have hooves divided into two or four parts. Many are large and live in groups or herds. The limbs between the "wrist" and "ankle" joints are elongated, and the legs, especially in deer and antelopes, are often long and slender and built for speed. Pigs, however, are short-legged and stockily built.


Pigs eat plants, roots and even carrion. The biggest, the barbirussa, lives on the island of Celebes. Like other pigs it has large canine teeth curved into tusks, which are used as weapons and for rooting in the soil. The African pig, the warthog, is said to be the ugliest animal in the world. The wild boar lives in Europe, Asia and India, and has become rare. For centuries it has been hunted for sport. It is now protected in game reserves in some places. Domestic pigs are descended from the wild boar. Like some other farm animals, a sow may occasionally attack a human in defence of her litter. Although pigs are sometimes considered dirty animals they are in fact very clean. Peccaries live in South America. They are small pigs that can be dangerous. Wild pigs are nervous, and may attack without warning.


Hippopotamus means ''river horse". Hippos live in Africa and can grow to four metres, and weigh three tonnes. They live in groups on the banks of rivers and lakes, or in the water, almost submerged, with their eyes, ears and nostrils showing. Hippos can dive and walk along the river bottom. They have a web between their toes which helps them to swim. Hippos feed on water plants, and at night graze on the waterside vegetation. The pig-sized pygmy hippo, a small cousin, lives in the tropical forests of the Congo and spends much of the time in water. Its oily skin protects it from the heat.


There are two kinds of camel. The one-humped Arabian dromedary is now only a domestic animal. For centuries camels have provided the only means of crossing a desert, and even today, the camel is as valuable to an Arab as the horse is to a cowboy. It is called the "ship of the desert", and can travel for miles without food and water. 

The two-toed feet of a camel are well padded to support its weight on loose sand, and the slit-like nostrils can be closed to protect it from sand storms. Camels have been used and trained for warfare, and can run swiftly.

Two humps

The Bactrian camel, which has two humps, lives in Asia, and is more at home in rocky country. A few truly wild ones still exist in the Gobi desert. Most of them are valuable beasts of burden, and were used along the old caravan routes before there were cars and trains. The Bactrian camel has a thick coat and can withstand cold weather.

In America, where camels originated, there are smaller versions. The vicuna and guanaco still live as wild animals in the Andean mountains of South America. The llama and alpaca are the domestic forms, used by the South American Indians. The llama is used to carry burdens and the alpaca's hair is woven into cloth. Camels have complicated stomachs for digesting their harsh and prickly food. Their soft and flexible lips help them to feed.

Santa Claus

Another beast of burden is the reindeer, a member of the deer family. Unlike its North American relative, the caribou, it is no longer wild. Reindeer live in herds, and are kept by the Lapps and other northern peoples, providing them with milk, food and clothing. Like the African antelopes, reindeer migrate during the winter, travelling south to warmer parts. The wide hooves make a clicking sound when the reindeer moves, and help to give support over the snow. Reindeer feed on the "reindeer moss" of the tundra, which is really a lichen. 

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