Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Skin You Live In” as Want to Read:
The Skin You Live In
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Skin You Live In

4.14  ·  Rating details ·  661 ratings  ·  172 reviews
With the ease and simplicity of a nursery rhyme, this lively story delivers an important message of social acceptance to young readers. Themes associated with child development and social harmony, such as friendship, acceptance, self-esteem, and diversity are promoted in simple and straightforward prose. Vivid illustrations of children's activities for all cultures, such a ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published April 1st 2005 by Chicago Children's Museum
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.14  · 
Rating details
 ·  661 ratings  ·  172 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Skin You Live In
Zoraya Brown
I love that I could use this book to teach children about diversity, cultures other than their own, accepting themselves the way that they are and accepting others. My favorite line from the book is, "glows when it shows that it knows we love you skin." This is another opportunity that I would use to teach children about the benefits of healthy eating (glowing, beautiful skin!) We would compare skin tones and talk about how they are all beautiful. We would also look at photos of different cultur ...more
Ashtin Flener
Oct 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: multicultural
In this simple, yet beautiful book, Michael Tyler portrays different boys and girls of all different races doing everyday things and feeling everyday ways. On one page, he portrays an African American little girl splashing in the water with the text "hey, look at your skin" and on the next page is a Caucasian boy doing the exact same thing with text saying "The wonderful skin YOU live in". The story goes on to talk about eating ice cream, snuggling up to go to sleep at night, playing in the sun, ...more
Jan 24, 2011 rated it really liked it
I first read this book in... uh... 2005 or so. I was working in a museum setting intentionally having conversations with children and their families about issues of race. This book gave a positive, lighthearted way to talk about skin color and offer possible language for describing skin tone, as well as making clear the ways skin in a part of who we are without defining who we are and of what we are capable. Since then, I have worked at the Chicago Children's Museum (CCM) for a bunch of years. A ...more
Allie Switzer
Sep 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This incredibly insightful book explains the beauty of being who you are. The book begins by praising the reader for their skin that they live in, going into detail all the things they do in their own skin, like playing and jumping and dreaming. The readers skin is then compared to its relation to their family, and all the ups and downs that you face with your skin, and all that your skin endures. The book then continues by proving how even though all of us have different looking skin, we are al ...more
Feb 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: culture
What an awesome book! Children can really appreciate and or be introduced to the diversity of skin colors around us. So many lessons about different cultures can come out of this book. I also appreciate the fact that it includes rhyming sentences. It also includes life lessons like sharing and caring for others, not discriminating gender, and learning to get along.

Extension activity: With skin color paint we can discuss which colors much each child best. After that, the children will be able to
Natalie Varela-Rios
Nov 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: pre-k
This is a very good book that teaches important lessons on diversity, acceptance, and self-esteem. It does this through rhymes and similes engaging the children even more. It uses sweet desserts to describe different skin colors such as cinnamon and chocolate. This can be used as a great Segway into a lesson plan where the kids can think of a dessert that matches their own skin color. This would probably be a little more difficult for preschoolers due to all the words on the pages and the amount ...more
May 04, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens-books
This book celebrates the delights of having skin. It would probably be good for a child with normal skin.

Unfortunately, it's probably not good for kids with severe skin conditions like eczema. I was one of those kids and this book almost made me cry, even as an adult. People like me never get to celebrate having normal good skin. For us, skin is just a source of pain and shame.
Barbara Thompson Book
wonderful book about appreciating yourself and your appearance.
Mary Lee
Jun 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-book, race
A rhyming celebration of all shades of skin, and a reminder that it's what's IN the skin that matters most. ...more
Jennifer Yawson
Dec 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
While Csicsko's cheerful, quirky art, which takes liberties with proportion and perspective, shows children of various skin colors engaged in different activities, the narrative invites readers to look at their skin: "The skin you have fun in; the skin that you run in; the skin that you hop, skip and jump in the sun in." The text then uses food-related metaphors as it pays tribute to skin tones: "Your coffee and cream skin, your warm cocoa dream skin... Your chocolate chip, double dip sundae su ...more
Dec 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The author read this story and talked about the book in the little diner's crew, so when I saw it in my school library, I decided to check it out.

The author talked about the different kinds and colors of skin and how it doesn't matter.

Henessy Tolliver
The message in this book is important and very relatable for children to read.
Nov 29, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
A great celebration of self, diversity, and body positive messages. Also has some nice descriptive language, mostly food metaphors.
Patrick Resse
Sep 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: musso
This book written by Michael Tyler and illustrated by David Lee Csicsko is n extraordinary book about diversity that does not have any awards, but should most certainly have. This book is targeted primarily for ages two through seven, but can have an effect on almost anyone. Many adults nowadays could even learn from the message of this book. Inside the cover of the book is a shortened nursery rhyme that sums up the books message of how we all live in different skin, but how we should love that ...more
Eden Greenhouse
Feb 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Summary: This book illustrates, with its descriptive words and vivid pictures, the many different experiences we have as humans in our own skin. It begins by listing action-related experiences, then shifts to sensory images of the different shades of our skin, and finally, it expresses how our skin does not define us as people. In the end, the author describes the beauty of our skin and how lucky we are to live in it.

Themes: The major theme throughout the book is that beauty lies within.

Ben Truong
Mar 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The Skin You Live In is a children's picture book written by Michael Tyler and illustrated by David Lee Csicsko and shows that humanity comes in many different colors and that's just great.

Tyler's text is simplistic and poetic, but wielding big ideas. For the most part the rhyming scheme seems to flows beautifully, but for about four-fifths of the book Tyler repeats words for rhyming couplets (i.e., he rhymes skin with skin and in with in a lot), however it doesn't detracts from the book. Csicsk
Kim Van
Oct 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I. The skin you live in is an objective book and is about all types of skin tones. You can read about all the things everybody does in their skin. The author describes all the shades skin comes in, by using references to delicious foods. This makes it that every skin color is included and good in their own way. After that, he goes into all the things skin does not determine and want to get across that everyone is more than they seem, and that it is all about what someone thinks, hopes and dreams ...more
Aisha Rokarya
Feb 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The Skin You Live In written by Micheal Tyler and illustrated by David Lee Csicsko is a realistic fiction book. It is a great book to read to children because it is a good representation of diversity, culture, and acceptance of oneself and others. It has illustrations of children with all different skin tones so all students relate and can possibly see themselves. The story also promotes a sense of encouragement to all children to love themselves. The book also compares all the different skins t ...more
Latosha Finch
Oct 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: literacy-shelf
This book lets us know that we should love the skin that we live in. The book depicts all of the different things we do in our skin every day. The illustrations clearly show children who have different skin tones, and are smiling and happy about them. The varieties of skin tones are sure to allow students to see themselves. The words are descriptive and colorful, which I am sure will draw the attention of children. There are similes in which skin tone is related to tasty treats (“warm cocoa drea ...more
Stephie Healy
Sep 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
“The Skin You Live In” is a wonderful book to help children understand the different skin colors that exist in the world and how one is not better than the other. This children book goes through the different tones and hues and skin variations that surround us. It compares skin colors to warm cocoa, spun sugar, lemon, and toffee wrapped cinnamon spice and it talks about how each of these are all “special and different and just the same, too!”.
I really enjoyed this book. It is so important that y
Oct 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: just-be-yourself
I loved reading this book. The title says it all, "The Skin You Live in". It was incredibly uplifting. The book uses positive words throughout to show children that they should love the skin they are in. The opening line of the book is, "Hey, look at your skin...the wonderful skin you live in." The book continues by stating things that everyone does in their skin, such as sleep and dream; and run and jump in. The pictures in the book are not overly complicated. It's a cartoon drawn book, and the ...more
Alexandra Stoencheva
Mar 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: diversity
"The Skin You Live In" is a great book to teach children about diversity. This book talks about all the different types of people in the world including different skin color, shape, and size. It talks about rich and poor, happy and sad, and dumb and smart people. This is a great book to read to young children who are just beginning to learn about diversity. It covers all the basics but is still written in an easy way to understand for young readers. This is a fun book to read since all the pages ...more
Marissa Elera
Apr 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
We leave behind all hang-ups about that organ that shells us in this bubbly book about celebrating skin and all it is and is not. Tyler urges young minds to understand that “your ginger snapped, cinnamon spice skin” and “your butterscotch gold skin, your lemon tart bold skin” cannot be dumb or smart, better or lesser, rich or poor, or she or he skin.

A gorgeous message communicated in well written verse is complimented by vivid illustration that partners just right. This book is a delight, and it
Christina Fisher
Jul 29, 2014 rated it liked it
Made for young readers, this book uses rhyme to describe that people from different cultures may look different, but have many commonalities - less science, more social learning here, but still a great message for young kids, preschool to second grade, I would say. Instead of using this as an informational book to teach about skin itself (an interesting, science topic), this would be a great book to teach about juicy vocabulary and descriptions - the author uses phrases like "ginger-snapped, cin ...more
Shannon Brasher
This book is a nice book to read to younger readers about diversity and the fact that we all are different on the outside but we are the same on the inside. I think this book does a good job addressing that topic, as it gives all kinds of rich language examples such as "The skin you're all day in; the skin you play in; the skin you snuggle up, cuddle up, lay in..." That helps to show children that even though your skin color may be different, you still have the same experiences. I really like th ...more
This book is in my top three. I loved how the pictures told a story of how it doesn't matter. In the book the illustrations are on point and they somewhat tell the story. I also loved how the author used different skin tones. I think children would love this book as well because, they can see different skin tones and understand that true beauty comes from within. The book also has this rhyming thing going on. I think that children will get caught up with he rhyming sentences but, they would stil ...more
Jan 04, 2018 rated it liked it
I wanted to "really like" this book, but I only just "liked it quite a bit." So it's really more of a 3.5 stars.

Part of it is that the word "skin" is repeated so often that it loses all meaning. And part of it is that it gets very treacly. But the message is so, so important - and yet it doesn't even make an appearance until about halfway through.

The last few pages read very Dr. Seuss-like, but I didn't read the rest of the book in quite that meter/rhythm, so the change was sudden for me.

I lik
Amy B.
Jul 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: early childhood educators & parents of young children
Recommended to Amy by: NEA website
Tyler, M. (2005). The skin you live in. Chicago, Illinois. Chicago Children’s Museum.

The Skin You Live In is a colorful celebration of skin and the many shades that can be seen around the world. The rhyming words come to life and instill meaning as they are words of encouragement and acceptance and diversity. The vibrant and colorful cartoon-like illustrations send messages of having fun and celebrating who you are and what you look like regardless of your skin, hair or eye color. I would sugges
Kaylan Nurse
Oct 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: diversity
Great read for the younger children that are not yet exposed to this topic. The way the story flows with the rhymes will keep them interested with the text. With simplicity, this story offers an oppurtunity for parents or teachers to go into the topic of race with the students in a fun and colorful sort of way. The story targets younger children and makes them feel comfortable to express their ideas and thoughts about race. They also can connect to the book being that they are aroung the age of ...more
Mar 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
The Skin You Live In is a great book for young readers. The author does a good job in discussing all the different skin types and how they are unique to each person. I would recommend this to anyone who is reading this to a young child since it is easily comprehensible, but yet the graphics are colorful.
This book has to do with the issue of inequality and stereotypes. It discusses how everyone is different and may have different skin colors, but at the end of the day everyone is equal. This boo
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Colors of Us
  • Same, Same But Different
  • Happy in Our Skin
  • Pink Is for Boys
  • I Love My Hair!
  • You Matter
  • All Are Welcome
  • Just Like Me
  • I Like Myself!
  • Mae Among the Stars
  • We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga
  • Hair Love
  • Not My Idea: A Book About Whiteness
  • The Name Jar
  • Let's Talk about Race
  • Sulwe
  • Separate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez and Her Family's Fight for Desegregation
  • Ron's Big Mission
See similar books…

Related Articles

  Tami Charles is a former teacher and the author of picture books, middle grade and young adult novels, and nonfiction. As a teacher, she made...
45 likes · 65 comments
“And like flowers in the fields, that make wonderful views, when we stand side-by-side in our wonderful hues..

We all make a beauty so wonderfully true.
We are special and different, and just the same, too!

So whenever you look at your beautiful skin, from your wiggling toes to your giggling grin...

Think how lucky you are that the skin you live in, so beautifully holds the "You" who's within.”
More quotes…