Kindergarten Books > Giraffe Problems

Giraffe Problems

text: Jory John | illustration:Lane Smith | translation:Jawdat Eid

Edward the giraffe (Fafa in the Arabic version) can’t understand why his neck is as long and bendy and, well, ridiculous as it is. No other animal has a neck this absurd. He’s tried disguising it, dressing it up, strategically hiding it behind bushes — honestly, anything you can think of, he’s tried.

Just when he has exhausted his neck-hiding options, a turtle helps him understand that his neck has a purpose, and looks excellent in a bow tie.

Family Activities

“I can… I can’t” is a phrase we hear a lot from our young children who are busy exploring their capabilities and what they can do all the time, and they do so by comparing themselves to other children, and sometimes this happens due to the influence of adults who reinforce that comparison.


Dear Parents,

Each child has unique characteristics, abilities, and developmental processes. There are children, like Edward the giraffe, who only see “the problem” in themselves, which prevents them from seeing other special qualities and abilities that they have. Like Edward, who is always grumpy and angry, these kids feel frustrated and helpless, until a “turtle” comes and helps them see what they consider to be their deficiency from an entirely different viewpoint.

As parents, we have a great role in supporting our child to see themselves in a positive rather than a negative perspective, when we invite them to contemplate what they can do instead of what they cannot do, and to see what their physical characteristics allow them to do instead of what these features prevent them from doing.

Family Activities

  • We can chat about how Edward the giraffe feels about his neck. Why did he feel like this? What helped him accept his neck and see its benefit?
  • What do we like about animals? We can think of different animals, and take turns completing this sentence: What I love about the elephant/the dog/the ant is...because...
  • We can talk to our child about the qualities they do not like and that bother them about themselves. It is important to support the child in seeing what these characteristics allow (for example: being small in size enables them to enter confined spaces). We can also talk about other qualities that they love about themselves.
  • Turtle helped Edward the giraffe to love his neck. Which friend makes us feel loved? Which friend makes us feel happy?
  • We can look in the mirror and describe what we see: short straight hair/wide brown eyes...
  • Edward is in our house! We can create a model for Edward’s neck from a long cardboard cylinder, and search our wardrobes for different ties that we can we can wrap around it.
  • Enjoy your reading!

רעיונות לשילוב הספר בגן

From the Field