This Multi-Colored Stack Of Paint Is Actually Each Student's Unique Skin Color

"We love the skin we’re in!"

Second-grade teacher Aeriale Johnson wanted her new students at Washington Elementary School in San Jose, Calif. to see color in all its beauty. To start off the school year, she tweeted about an art project she gave her class. 

She had each student mix paint to match their one-of-a-kind skin color.


The project was meant to help students think about representation and diversity, and to practice self-love.

She shared a photo of the stack of mixed paints in jars that represented the beautiful range of skin tones in her class. The photo was accompanied by quotes celebrating diversity and included references to kids' books on the subject, such as Skin Again and The Skin You Live In.

Johnson wrote that when she was growing up, teachers had a tendency to "pretend that they didn't see color." She saw it a problematic; she explained, "My culture, my language, my religion, and even the texture of my hair are all inextricably linked to the color of my skin. To erase it is to erase me."

She wanted to take a different approach and have students celebrate their skin tone and the range of shades.

"I knew I wanted each of my students to mix their own color, but I wanted it to carry greater significance. I wanted them to mix colors to discover the rainbow inside of their beautiful skin."

Parents, fellow teachers, and other Twitter users are commending Johnson for the project and asking her more about it. She explained her method so others could try it out in their classrooms:

The students enjoyed the project and had some sweet reactions:

Some commenters are discussing how they've participated in similar projects.

(H/T: Cafe Mom)


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