All the files in the /etc/skel/ directory are hidden. Meaning they start with a "." .
So issuing the command
cp /etc/skel/* /home/test/
will result in
cp: cannot stat `/etc/skel/*': No such file or directory
So you can issue cp -R /etc/skel/.* /desired/path
Wait Wait do not run off to issue this command because if you do it you will discover that your whole goddamn /etc directory now resides in your /desired/path.
This is because of the ".." in every dir denoting the parent which unfortunately in this case is /etc/.
So the solution is
cp -R /etc/skel/.[a-z]* /desired/path
Note the "." after /skel/
Or better yet just copy them over individually by hand there are only a few of them. Just a question why do you need to copy them manually ? Won't newusers do that for you. Or am i mistaken in this? Since I am not so familiar with newusers.