Giraffes Can't Dance
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Giraffes Can't Dance

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4.22 of 5 stars 4.22  ·  rating details  ·  6,786 ratings  ·  482 reviews
Gerald the giraffe longs to dance, but his legs are too skinny and his neck is too long. At the Jungle Dance, the warthogs waltz, the chimps cha-cha, and the lions tango. "Giraffes can't dance," they all jeer when it's Gerald's turn to prance. But with some sound advice from a wise cricket, Gerald starts swaying to his own sweet tune.
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published September 1st 2001 by Orchard Books (first published 1999)
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Kathryn
I love giraffes and I love dancing--and I could tell by the cover art that giraffes CAN dance, despite the title ;-> This is a rather typical story of the main character feeling inadequate and made fun of by others who are "better" at a certain activity than he is--in this case, dancing--before discovering his own hidden talents at which point all the others are mighty impressed. But, the somewhat over-tired theme is made up for in the fun cast of characters (lions doing a tango, baboons danc...more
Lisa Vegan
Jul 21, 2011 Lisa Vegan rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Lisa by: Abigail A. & Kathryn
I love the cover. It’s so colorful and charming. The story inside? Well, maybe I needed to bring my much younger self to the forefront. I like the message re dancing to one’s own drummer, being different being more than just okay but something to celebrate, to aim to do something that doesn’t seem to come naturally. All positive messages.

It’s colorful and fun and has some positive things to say. But, somehow, for some reason, I couldn’t get past the anthropomorphizing of these particular animals...more
Luann
Giraffes are one of my favorite animals so when I saw the cover of this one, I knew I wanted to read it. The message in Giraffes Can't Dance is that you shouldn't listen to others when they tell you that you can't do something. You should find your own way of accomplishing it. Gerald the giraffe learns that "we can all dance when we find music that we love."

The best part of this one for me, though, is the illustrations. If you've ever wanted to see warthogs waltzing, rhinos rock 'n' rolling, lio...more
Shannon (Giraffe Days)
I was of course drawn to this book because it's about a giraffe, but fortunately it doesn't end there.

This is the story of Gerald the giraffe who is very good at standing still and munching leaves off trees, but "when he tried to run around / He buckled at the knees." Every year the animals held a jungle dance, the biggest do of the year, and the animals pull out all the stops:

The warthogs started waltzing
And the rhinos rock'n'rolled
The lions danced a tango
Which was elegant and bold.

The chimps
...more
Sheena O'connell
Giraffes Can’t Dance
This is a beautifully illustrated book about a Giraffe called Gerald who lives in the Jungle. Gerald is long, skinny and bandy knees and as a result of this poor Gerald can’t dance and the other animals in the jungle make fun of Gerald for been different and not being like him. Geralds struggles to fit in. This is a great book to convey the message of inclusion and friendship to younger children. From this heart-warming book they discover that even though tour different or ca...more
Jessica Hall
Gerald the Giraffe was very good at ‘standing still and munching shoots off trees'. However, what Gerald wanted to be good at, but was most definitely not, was dancing. At the annual Jungle Dance the warthogs did the waltz, the rhino’s did the rock and roll and the chimps did the cha cha cha. But Gerald simply froze on the dance floor, to the amusement of his friends that were shouting 'Giraffe's can't dance!'.
A somewhat sad and lonely Gerald found himself gazing up at the bright shining moon, l...more
Kerry
What a fantastic book! It was the title of the book which first captured my attention and I decided I wanted to read it. The book uses a lot of colourful illustrations throughout which will be sure to capture every child’s attention/imagination. The moral of the story is that we should not judge anyone on face value and I think this would be a useful book to introduce to children as young as 4 years old especially if any pupils in your class are experiencing bullying/prejudices.

The story uses n...more
Sharmin Ali
Every year in Africa, there is an animal dance but there was one animal that really didn’t look forward to the dance and that was Gerald the giraffe. He was always teased by the other animals because he could not dance. He walked away and came across a cricket, who advised him that being different wasn’t always bad. He told him to listen silently to the sounds around him. Then the cricket brought out his violin and began to play. Gerald felt an amazing feeling and began to do some dance moves. T...more
Becky
I liked this book having read it many times. Giraffes can’t dance is about a giraffe called Gerald. Gerald lives in the jungle with all the other jungle animals and every year there was a jungle dance but all the other jungle animals would make fun of him as Gerald was long skinny and can’t dance. Gerald meets a cricket in the jungles who introduces him to different kind of music and Gerald finds music that he can dance to. All of a sudden he found that he was able to dance. All the animals were...more
Bobbie Jo
‘Giraffes Can’t Dance’, by Giles Andreae, is a story about a giraffe who finds it difficult to dance. On a celebration day, all of the animals get together and dance, laughing at Gerald the giraffe when he tries to join in. Gerald runs away and sees his friend, who tells him there are different types of music to dance to and he just has to find his music. Gerald discovers that he can dance, just differently to everyone else, and shows all of the animals, who become jealous of him.
This humorous a...more
Philippa
This is the story of Gerald, a giraffe who desperately wants to join in the fun of the annual Jungle Dance. The problem is that he is simply too clumsy and everyone starts laughing the moment he walks on the dancefloor. In despair, he sadly heads home until he meets a cricket along the way, who tells him to listen to the noises of the night around him. Suddenly, Gerald finds himself swaying gently as he feels moved to dance. All the other animals who had previously laughed at him start to admire...more
(NS) Dana
Gerald is a tall giraffe that wishes he could dance like the rest of the animals. However, his legs are so skinny, his neck is too long, and his knees buckle whenever he tries to twirl around. At the Jungle Dance all the animals do their fancy waltzes, cha-chas, and tangos. When Gerald tries to give dancing a try he hears, “Giraffes can’t dance,” making him leave the festivities very sad and down. Until a little creature his him some uplifting advice leaving the other animals in amazement!

This b...more
Catherine McDonald
One of my favourite books to use in the classroom as it is very simple but very interactive.
I used this book at home with Junior Infants and they absolutely loved it.
The book follows Gerald the Giraffe. He dreads the jungle dance. His legs are too skinny and he just cannot dance the same as everyone else. The children enjoy hearing about his tangos and two steps. He’s worried about the other animals laughing at him. But one day, Gerald realises that it doesn’t matter that he’s different from the...more
Jonathan Roberts
Giraffes can’t dance
By Giles Andreae
Illustrated by Guy Parker-Rees
This, unsurprisingly, is a heart-warming story about a Giraffe called Gerald who is told by the other animals that he can’t dance. However, after some wise advice from a cricket Gerald is able to return to the jungle dance and prove them all wrong.
This is a lovely story that celebrates the richness of differences and the possibilities created by a more personal approach. It also has something valuable to say about the impact of ou...more
Mitel Patel
Giraffes Can't Dance

Giraffes can’t dance is a story with a moral. It’s a story about Gerald the giraffe that lives in the jungle and it’s the annual jungle dance but Gerald can’t dance because his legs are “thin”. Then he comes across a friendly cricket who tells him that “sometimes when you’re different, you just need a different song” and the next thing you know Gerald is dancing and grooving in his own special way to the music of a moonlit evening.

The delightful tale tells two vital morals to children; one bei...more
Emma
This is a brilliant story and makes me remember the sheer excitement of exploring the world of exotic animals and the exciting places they lived. The story uses colourful illustrations and a rhythmical storyline which provides a musical and fast paced feel.

The story is about a giraffe called Gerald who lives in the African plains of Kenya. The plains are filled with lively animals who just love to dance. Funny illustrations of waltzing warthogs, rock ‘n’ rolling rhinos and tangoing lions gives...more
Donna Mcaleese
“Gerald was a TALL giraffe. His neck was long and slim but his legs were awfully long and bandy. He was very good at munching leaves from the trees but when he tried to run around he buckled at the knees...”
The opening lines give a clear character description of Gerald the giraffe, he is sometimes clumsy and awkward, more often than not, he is unsure of himself. Gerald feels hopelessly lost at the jungle dance, watching all his jungle friends break moves in various styles of dance. They laugh a...more
Makeba Nugent

This is a brilliantly written book, which could also be regarded as a rhyming poem. As the book is written in rhyme throughout. Which I love!

The reader is introduced to Gerald "a tall giraffe, whose neck was long and slim, But his knees were awfully bandy And his legs were rather thin". Which meant that every year when the Jungle Dance "arrived, Poor Gerald felt so sad, Because when it came to dancing He was really very bad". Gerald wanted to participate in the jungle dance, just like the other...more
Kayleigh
‘Giraffes can’t dance’ is such a brilliant and funny book! I found it really satisfying to read and to look at. It is brightly illustrated with lovely pictures of the different animals included in the book.

It is about a giraffe who meets a group of animals in the forest dancing to music. The giraffe feels like he is no good at dancing to the music and feels that everyone around him is either looking or laughing at him. He walks off into another part of the woods under the light from the moon. He...more
Kerry
Whether on display in a book store, library, or classroom, Giles Andreae’s Giraffes Can’t Dance is sure to catch the eyes of readers young and old. The bright and bold cover art by Guy Parker-Rees grabs your attention and consequentially has you grabbing the book. It is that same art that will captivate your young readers. Parker-Rees’ humorous watercolor and pen-and-ink illustrations compliment the magical story about a knobby-kneed, clumsy-legged giraffe that has trouble getting his moves righ...more
Clementine Lagarde
'Giraffes Can't Dance' By Giles Andrede and illustrated by Guy Parker-Rees

A wonderful story and amazing illustrations from the author of 'Rumble in the Jungle'. This story not only has great pictures but comes as a Pop-up as well.

Poor Gerald "a tall giraffe, whose neck was long and slim, But his knees were awfully bandy And his legs were rather thin", thought that he was a very bad dancer. Every year the animals in the jungle get very excited for he great jungle dance where all the animals part...more
Ann
This is a book about Gerald the giraffe who "can't dance" and all the other African animals at the Jungle Dance (where warthogs waltz and lions tango) make fun of him. Gerald begins to believe that maybe they are right, that maybe he is just useless. Until he happens upon a cricket who shows him another point of view:

"Excuse me!" coughed a cricket
who'd seen Gerald earlier on.
"But sometimes when you're different
you just need a different song."


I'm quite impressed with most of the rhymes in this b...more
Chloe Avery
Giraffes Can't Dance.

Gerald is a giraffe that has always wanted to be a dancer but believed he couldn’t because of his skinny legs and long neck. Once a year a dance was held in the jungle which all the animals would attend but Gerald never participated as everyone told him giraffes cannot dance. One night Gerald meets a cricket that encourages him that he can dance he just needs to find the right song. The cricket tells Gerald to listen to the music around him the movement of the trees and the...more
Orla Byrne
This is a terrific book about a Giraffe called Gerald who has two left feet. His long neck and bandy legs mean that each year he dreads the jungle dance where he feels he can't join in with the other animals who tango and rock 'n' roll. With the help of a tiny cricket, Gerald soon realises that he can dance too; he just needs a different song. The cricket encourages Gerald to listen to the different sounds of the jungle and Gerald is soon dancing his own dance, much to the wonder and amazement o...more
Muireann Mc Gowan
This fun, rhyming read-aloud book introduces the main character Gerald as "a tall giraffe, whose neck was long and slim, but his knees were awfully bandy, and his legs were rather thin". Gerald is awkward and clumsy and is constantly being laughed at because he can’t dance. This book spreads the message that you shouldn’t listen to others when they tell you that you can’t do something. It emphasises the importance of believing in yourself and your ability to accomplish anything you put your mind...more
Sharon
Gerald the Giraffe was dreading the jungle dance because he was a terrible dancer. When the day of the dance arrived, Gerald watched all the other animals show off their moves. When Gerald stepped forward all the animals roared with laughter. On Gerald's journey home he heard a beautiful sound and his body followed with a graceful dance that astonished all the jungle animals. This picture book and Cd teaches children that, "We can all dance...when we find the music that we love", I felt this boo...more
Ciaran Mcnamee
Gerald the giraffe is tall and not very steady on his feet. He wants take part in the Jungle Dance but loses confidence because he has been told, “giraffes can’t dance.” After fleeing the dance he meets a cricket that helps him realise that he can dance, he just needs the right tune. Gerald discovers that he can dance and the other animals realise that they were wrong.

This rhyming book has a great rhythm that is very appropriate for a book that centres around dance. The rhyme, rhythm and colour...more
Sarah
This vividly illustrated picture book tells the story of Gerald, a tall and beautiful giraffe who hates his gangly legs, bandy knees and his inability to dance. At the annual Great Jungle Dance, the event Gerald had been dreading, he finds himself being jeered at by waltzing warhogs and cha-cha-ing chimps. As Gerald slips off into the darkness with his head hung in shame, he meets a wise cricket who teaches the giraffe that we can all dance, some of us just need a different song.

This story is a...more
Tasha
Really good story, excellent for teaching and learning rhyming. Nursery really enjoyed this book, and it was used at beginning of learning to rhyme words, it really engages the children and the story also brings in at an early age, how we should be nice to each other (PSED.

Children enjoyed the lovley pictures. Story is about a giraffe who goes to the dance and the other animals are horrible and make fun of the giraffe saying he can not dance, so the giraffe leaves really upset, then he mets a n...more
Kyran Delaney
Giraffes Can't dance by Giles Andreae is an enchanting book that will be enjoyed by children from 2 to 5 years. It is written in rhyme, which is mostly very well done and gives the book a lovely rhythm. The story is about a gangly, clumsy giraffe who is embarrassed about not being able to dance. Unsurprisingly it has a happy ending, but gets across it's point about people or animals all being different and everyone finding their own way. The deeper meaning is probably lost on the younger child,...more
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Giles Andreae is the author of several children's books, including the best-selling Giraffes Can't Dance, illustrated by Guy Parker-Rees. He is the creator of Purple Ronnie, one of the most successfully licensed cartoon characters in his native England.

Giles lives with his wife and three children in Notting Hill, England.
More about Giles Andreae...
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