Whoever You Are, by Mem Fox

            This book helps point out clearly that although we might be different in some ways; in many more we are all just the same.  The colorful illustrations depict children and emotions that go along with the simple eloquent words of this book.


  • Paint sample chips in colors that reflect skin colors
  • Several bags of dried beans in various colors
  • Pictures of real children playing
  • Picture books that depict other ways of life then the one common to your children.
  • Emotion pictures


  • Different (different from you or a group of objects)
  • Same (just like you or a group of objects)
  • Joy (something that makes you happy)

Before reading the Story;

            Tell the children “I’m thinking of something that all of us have”.  Let the children come up with things that are common to all if they can. Then tell the children the thing you are thinking of is covered by their skin and includes all the parts inside (a body).

Approaches to Learing/Reasoning & Problem Solving; develops increasing ability to find more than one solution to a question, task, or problem.

Play Simon Says. (Stand on tippy toes, roll your knuckles on the floor, flip your ear lobe, touch your eyebrows, slap your thighs, etc.).

Science/Scientific Knowledge; expands knowledge of and respect for their bodies and the environment

Reading the Story

            As you read the book stop on each page to share some of the things that you see that are different from where you live and also things that are the same.

Social & Emotional Development/Knowledge of Families & Communities; progresses in understanding similarities and respecting differences among people such as genders, race, special needs, cultural, language, and family structures.

After Reading the Story

            In the story it talked about we all feel joy and love the same and also blood and pain.  Show the children pictures of real children in a variety of situations that depict clear emotion.  Ask the children to talk about the pictures.  What is happening?  How do you think the child feels?  How would this make you feel?  What else makes you feel this way?  Who else feels this way?  What makes you happy?  What makes you laugh, cry, or be sad?  Make sure to ask the children who else feels or would feel this way?  The idea is to show that we all have feelings that are similar.

Language Development/Speaking & Communicating; develops increasing abilities to understand and use language to communicate information, experiences, ideas, feelings, opinions, needs, questions; and for other varied purposes.


            Use paint chip samples to make a color matching game that has colors similar to skin colors.

Mathematics/Geometry & Spatial Sense; shows growth in matching, sorting putting in series, and regrouping objects according to one or two attributes such as color, shape, or size.

Music and Movement

            Sing It’s Love That makes The World Go Round. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=icoNkyEjIVo

It’s love, it’s love, it’s love that make the world go round,

It’s love, , it’s love, it’s love that makes the world go round,

It’s love, it’s love, it’s love that makes the world go round,

It’s love that make the world go round.

It’s boys, it’s girls, it’s friends that make the world go round’

It’s boys, it’s girls, it’s friends that make the world go round,

It’s boys, it’s girls, it’s friends that make the world go round

It’s love that makes the world go round.

Creative Arts/ Music; participates with increasing interest and enjoyment in a variety of music activities, including listening, singing, finger plays, games, and performances.


Encourage the children to build homes today. Add interesting materials to embellish such as toilet paper tubes, scraps of cardboard, felt squares, sticks, etc..

Physical Health & Development/Fine Motor Skills; growing in hand-eye coordination in building with blocks, putting together puzzles, reproducing shapes and patterns, stringing beads, and using scissors.


            Give the children finger paints in white, brown, yellow, and black to try to mix skin tone colors.  Then encourage the children to draw people in their finger paint.

Science/Scientific Knowledge; shows increased awareness and beginning understanding of changes in materials and cause-effect relationships. AND Creative Arts/Art; gains ability in using different art media and materials in a variety of ways for creative expression and representation.

Sand and water

If your center allows, add several varieties of beans to the table for the children to use for scooping and pouring. Tell the children that these are all beans but they are diffrent.

Social & Emotional Development/Self-Control; demonstrates increasing capacity to follow rules and routines and use materials purposefully, safetly, and respectfully.

Library and Writing

            Add any books with photos that depict life in other countries or life that is different from what you and the children understand as the norm.

Literacy/Book Knowledge & Appreciation; shows growing interest in reading related activities, such as asking to have a favoritie book read; choosing to look at books; drawing pictures based on stories; asking to take books home; going to the library; and engaging in pretend-reading with other children.

Dramatic play

            Bring in any clothes that you might have that are common to other cultures.  Add scarves to dress-ips as these can be used as capes, skirts, head dresses, baby carriers, etc..

Creative Arts/Dramatic Play; shows growing creativity and imagination in using materials and in assuming different roles in dramatic play situations.

Math and manipulatives

Make a Memory Game using pictures of children at play around the world. Make 2 sets of pictures and glue them to index cards. Turn the upside-down and the children must take turns trying to make matching pairs. If they make a match, they keep the cards. Play until all the cards have been matched and count who has the most cards.

Social & Emotional Development/Cooperation; develops increasing abilities to give and take in interactions; to take turns in games and using materials; and to interact without being overly submissive or directive. AND Approaches to learning/Engagement & Persistence; grows in abilities to persist in and complete a variety of tasks, activities, projects, and experiences.

Outdoor play

Explain to the children that Soccer is a game played throughout the world. Set up a goal area and let the children practice their kicking and foot dribbling skills as you have soccer practice or a game.

Physical Health & Development/Gross Motor Skills; demonstrates increasing abilities to coordinate movements in throwing catching, kicking, bouncing ball,s and using the slide and swing.


Grover sings I am Special video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gms-Yk7mzv4

sample of color matching game

Pictures of children at play.

Emotion pictures

About Kerry CI am an Early Childhood Educator who has seen daily the value of shared book readings with my preschoolers. I use the book theme in my centers and can daily touch upon a variety of Early Childhood Domains which makes assessing the children easy and individualized.