“Gemina stood out from all the others at the Santa Barbara Zoo. She was the famous crooked-neck giraffe.”
Gemina didn’t always have a crooked neck. When she was born, she looked like all the other baby giraffes: wobbly-legged and nearly six-feet tall. But when she was three, a bump appeared on the side of her neck. It got bigger and bigger, and made Gemina’s neck crooked. The zoo veterinarians took X-rays and examined her, but no one knew what caused the crook in her neck.
Even with her crazy bump everyone accepts Gemina, from the other giraffes to the visitors at the zoo. Kids and parents and grandparents stand in line to offer her special giraffe biscuits. She makes kids feel better about themselves, like the boy with scoliosis who said, “That giraffe has a bump like me.” Everyone loved Gemina, and the let her know by sending her letters and drawings – some of which are featured on the endpapers. They also held a giant birthday party for her when she turned 21.
Head over to Sally’s Bookshelf where you’ll find some hands-on “beyond the book” activities and an interview with author Karen Winnick.
It’s STEM Friday! (STEM is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)
Copyright © 2014 Sue Heavenrich All Rights Reserved.