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January 14, 2019

Exploring Differences in Pre-K

By Rebecca Silverstein

Utilize this SEL poster and its hands-on activities to discuss skin color with your Pre-K class for Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Grades PreK–K

    Key Takeaways:

    • Children begin to notice differences in people’s skin color from a young age.
    • Help students investigate what makes them the same and different from their peers.
    • Teach children to celebrate their uniqueness and the uniqueness of others.

    Discussing differences in skin color with your students may feel daunting. But children begin to notice these differences from a young age. That only makes it all the more important for early-childhood teachers to broach the subject in a positive way with their little learners.

     

    This is what inspired the My Big World magazine team to create our “The Skin You’re In” poster.

    Everyone has skin. It’s a part of our bodies, and it functions in the same way for everyone. At the same time, everyone has a different shade of skin color. It’s integral to show children that although we don’t all look alike, we are all beautiful. Life would be boring if everyone looked exactly the same! We want children to not only recognize but also celebrate what makes them them. By teaching this in a matter-of-fact way, we can have a positive and lasting impact on children’s outlook on differences.

    Of course, children learn from doing, not just looking and listening. So at the bottom of the poster we’ve featured a few hands-on activities for students to investigate their skin and bolster their learning. Mixing paint shades to match their skin color will allow students to see that their skin is a color that’s uniquely theirs. (It’s not just black, white, pink or tan!) Then, through actions such as closely examining their skin with a hand lens and testing the waterproof nature of their skin, children will see that everyone’s skin is still the same in many ways. We’re all different — but the same!

    Our models for the poster tried out all these activities, and they had a blast!

    If you’d like to extend the theme of the poster further, here are some additional resources:

    We’re providing our “The Skin You’re In” poster for free. Once you download this SEL poster, you can print it and hang it on your classroom wall or simply project it using a SMART Board.

    We truly hope “The Skin You’re In” lesson sparks wonderful conversation and exciting exploration with your students!

    Discover what My Big World magazine can do for your SEL curriculum!

     

    Rebecca Silverstein, M.S.Ed., is an editor for My Big World. She previously worked as an early childhood teacher in New York City. She graduated from Bank Street Graduate School of Education with a dual degree in early childhood and childhood education. 

    Key Takeaways:

    • Children begin to notice differences in people’s skin color from a young age.
    • Help students investigate what makes them the same and different from their peers.
    • Teach children to celebrate their uniqueness and the uniqueness of others.

    Discussing differences in skin color with your students may feel daunting. But children begin to notice these differences from a young age. That only makes it all the more important for early-childhood teachers to broach the subject in a positive way with their little learners.

     

    This is what inspired the My Big World magazine team to create our “The Skin You’re In” poster.

    Everyone has skin. It’s a part of our bodies, and it functions in the same way for everyone. At the same time, everyone has a different shade of skin color. It’s integral to show children that although we don’t all look alike, we are all beautiful. Life would be boring if everyone looked exactly the same! We want children to not only recognize but also celebrate what makes them them. By teaching this in a matter-of-fact way, we can have a positive and lasting impact on children’s outlook on differences.

    Of course, children learn from doing, not just looking and listening. So at the bottom of the poster we’ve featured a few hands-on activities for students to investigate their skin and bolster their learning. Mixing paint shades to match their skin color will allow students to see that their skin is a color that’s uniquely theirs. (It’s not just black, white, pink or tan!) Then, through actions such as closely examining their skin with a hand lens and testing the waterproof nature of their skin, children will see that everyone’s skin is still the same in many ways. We’re all different — but the same!

    Our models for the poster tried out all these activities, and they had a blast!

    If you’d like to extend the theme of the poster further, here are some additional resources:

    We’re providing our “The Skin You’re In” poster for free. Once you download this SEL poster, you can print it and hang it on your classroom wall or simply project it using a SMART Board.

    We truly hope “The Skin You’re In” lesson sparks wonderful conversation and exciting exploration with your students!

    Discover what My Big World magazine can do for your SEL curriculum!

     

    Rebecca Silverstein, M.S.Ed., is an editor for My Big World. She previously worked as an early childhood teacher in New York City. She graduated from Bank Street Graduate School of Education with a dual degree in early childhood and childhood education. 

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