by Judy Newman with Alexie Basil
I love the posts we’ve put together this week to celebrate the lovely energy in Giraffes Can’t Dance—and the fabulous message to readers of all ages about confidence and dancing to your own beat.
“Andreae’s rhyming text has a jaunty rhythm that’s likely to spark interest in the read-aloud crowd...Parker-Rees’s kicky depictions of slightly anthropomorphic animals boogying on the dance floor are the highlight here.” —Publishers Weekly
I’ve always loved dancing...but whether I’m good is another story entirely. And I will tell that story another day.
Suffice to say that I feel pretty much the same way as my friend and colleague David Vozar, who says:
“I believe that anyone can dance if they don’t think about it too much. It was always hard for me to imagine myself on a dance floor until I actually did it. I just closed my eyes and let the music take me.
“Luckily for me, I have never had to see what I looked like.”
Giraffes Can’t Dance is an upbeat and fun rhyming story about a giraffe named Gerald who desperately wants to let loose and dance but is afraid he won’t be any good at it. Fortunately, it all turns around when a little friendly cricket chirps a confidence-boosting song just for him.
This classroom favorite is an excellent conversation starter for helping your students explore many different themes and ideas, from things as simple as rhymes to more complicated concepts like the way stereotypes affect how you view yourself.
The blog team couldn’t wait to boogie along to this book! This week, the Book Boys sing their brand-new original song, “Giraffes CAN Dance”; teacher Debbie Bejune reflects on her students’ academic growth in Book Talks; award-winning illustrator Guy Parker-Rees shows kids how to draw Gerald the giraffe in Behind the Scenes; and we host a classroom jungle dance party in Cooked Up from a Book!
I hope you and your students enjoy Giraffes Can’t Dance and that it inspires everyone to express themselves in their own unique way.
Happy holiday season, and happy New Year to all!
And, as always, happy reading—keep on dancing!
This Book Is Available from Scholastic Book Clubs