Grade Levels: 3 - 5


  • Students will continue to develop a sense of self.
  • Students will examine race and differences.
  • Students will foster color exploration and creativity.


  • Large paper
  • Different colored Paints
  • Paint brushes
  • Book: All the Colors of the Earth by Sheila Hamanaka
  • Paper plates for mixing paints


  1. Read All the Colors of the Earth, by Sheila Hamanaka.
  2. Talk about why people are different colors (melanin in the skin). Allow children to hold their hands next to other children's hands and compare who is darker and lighter.
  3. Demonstrate how to mix paints and find what matches your skin color best.
  4. Allow children to explore with the paints and create their own self-portraits in the art center.
  5. Sing "We are All Different Colors."
  6. Trace children's hands and cut out. Allow them to paint hands in their color, laminate and use for job charts, or whatever else you can think of.
  7. Talk openly about how a long time ago, and sometimes even today, people were/are treated differently because of their skin color. Invite children to respond as to whether or not that makes sense.

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