Media and retouching (ages 8 - 10)

             Good Skin Knowledge


Subtopic: Media and retouching
Age group: 8-10
Time: 50 min


  • Recognize that the skin seen in magazine ads are not realistic
  • Discuss how these images can affect self-esteem
  • Reflect on how retouching affects them and their peers


•    Computer and projector (or computer lab)
•    “Dodge and Burn” YouTube video
•    This Is How worksheet
•    Pencils


1.    Facilitator will assess students’ discussion during Introduction to New Material, Guided Practice and Closing.

2.    Facilitator will assess if students were able to grasp the differences in the Before and After images during Guided Practice.


3 minutes

1.    Facilitator asks students, “Who likes to read or look at magazines?”

2.    Facilitator then asks students what they think of the models in the magazines—do they have nice skin?

3.    Facilitator explains that today we are going to find out the secret to their beautiful skin.

Introduction to new material

12 minutes

1.    Facilitator says they are going to watch a quick YouTube video that will reveal one of the secrets to the models’ beautiful skin. After the video, they will share their reactions to the video with the person next to them.

2.    Facilitator plays “Dodge and Burn” video.

3.    After video, Facilitator gives the students a couple minutes to talk about video.

4.    After 2-3 minutes, Facilitator then asks students for their reactions and asks follow-up questions. Here are some example follow-up questions:
    a.    What did you think of the “before” and “after” shot of the woman?
    b.    Did you know there was so much retouching done for magazine photos?
    c.    Has your idea of what you see in magazines changed at all?

5.    Facilitator should mention that this is one of many techniques used to create “flawless” skin.

Guided practice

15-20 minutes

Materials: Paper, pencils

1.    Facilitator plays video again and asks students to really pay attention to all the different ways they changed the image.

2.    Facilitator discusses video with students.
    a.    Has it affected them?
        i.    Self-esteem?
        ii.    Idea of what’s real?
        iii.    Kids with acne?
    b.    What is beauty? What makes someone beautiful? Is it only the stuff we see? Are there different ideas about what is beautiful?
    c.    Why do you think they retouch the models so much?

3.    Facilitator explains that in the next few years, many of them will experience pimples because their bodies are going to start changing. They might get frustrated because they will see models in the magazines with flawless skin, but it’s not reality. Those models also had to go through teen years and acne, and many of them have acne scars and spots to prove it—they just get retouched.

Independent practice

10 minutes
Materials: This Is How worksheet, pencils

1.    Facilitator hands out This Is How worksheet and explains they are going to take a few minutes to fill this out independently. Facilitator should read statements out loud to them before they begin.
    a.    Facilitator may have to explain that for “I am beautiful,” it doesn’t matter if you are a boy or girl. The term “beautiful” can be used for any gender.


5 minutes
Materials: None

1.    Facilitator asks students what they learned today. Has their perspective changed on what they see in magazines?

2.    Facilitator should reinforce that although models in magazines may seem to have flawless skin, it is just because of retouching. We may think of “perfect” skin as skin without any scars or flaws, but perfect skin in the skin you are in because it’s yours and it’s unique.

                AAD Logo 
Copyright © 2014 American Academy of Dermatology. All rights reserved.

Reproduction or republication strictly prohibited without prior written permission.


Program made possible
through a grant from Stiefel, a GSK company.