When Bellen Woodard was in third grade, a classmate asked her a question she had heard many times before: “Would you please pass the skin-colored crayon?”
As usual, Bellen handed the peach crayon to her friend. But this time, something bothered her. Bellen was the only Black girl in her grade. Though the peach crayon matched the skin color of most of her classmates, it didn’t match hers.
“It made me kind of feel not as important,” says Bellen, who’s now in fifth grade. “Like there’s only one skin color.”
She wanted her classmates to realize that many kids need crayons other than peach to draw themselves. Bellen set out to change the way her classmates thought about skin color.