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Analyzing Skin Colors

Teach your child about different skin colors and cultures with this fun color-matching activity using repurposed paint swatches!

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Activity PDF

What color are you?

This activity is an easy way to segue into learning about other cultures’ food, games and traditions to help your child understand that people are different but yet the same. To start, grab some sheets of paper with different colors or paint swatches of skin tones. Cut a circle out of the middle of each color and have your child compare them to their own hand. As they search for a match, use this opportunity to talk more about how just because people have different skin or do different things doesn’t mean they are different on the inside. 

📚 Books to explore:  I’m Like You, You’re Like Me by Cindy Gainer; I’m New Here by Anne Sibley O’Brien; and Everywhere Babies By Susan Meyers.

🌎 Explore the globe. Find cultures that your child is interested in and learn more about them together!


For this activity you will need:

Paint swatches OR colored paper with skin tones OR Printable


Learning Outcomes




Conversing with peers and adults


Understanding many culturally accepted ways


Step 1:

Cut a circle out of the middle of each colored paper.

Step 2:

Have your child place the cutout over their hand and go through each of the colors until they find a match.

Step 3:

Chat with your child about different colors of skin as you go through each of the colors and even compare your skin to your child’s to help give more context. Then you can tie back the conversation to different cultures and learn about what makes each one special.

⬆️ For older preschoolers: Have them pick a color in advance and then compare and see if they were right.

⬇️ For younger toddlers: Reduce the number of colors so it is easier to find a match.

Playful Questions

What color of skin tone do you think you have? 

Do you know someone who has a different color of skin than you do?

Are they different from you? Why?

What things from this culture do you like to do too?

What other countries can you name?

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