My Skin Your Skin


We may live in families, go to school, have friends, worship, but there are many differences in our lives. We may have similar eye colours, heights or skin colours but every one of us is different; unique. Then again, people of similar skin colour are grouped together by race. Thereafter, since way back into history, races have been judged, differentiated, bullied and segregated. In My Skin Your Skin, we read about racism and thereafter how we might stamp it out, stand up to it and feel empowered.

We are reminded that ‘racism isn’t always about calling people names‘. Rather it is ‘also about the way that things are done to stop people who are not white from being equal’. It can also be about organisations. We’re offered guidance about what to do when we experience racism, so that we use a ‘loud voice‘ to say that racism is not ‘all right‘ and tell an adult you trust. We’re reminded that racism can be found anywhere. However being racist is ‘never OK’.

On a powerful double page, Laura Henry- Allain and Onyinye-Iwu remind us that ‘We are all born with beautiful skin. We are not born racist’. Thereafter in three sequences we see how racism is born and spreads; in each instance we’re reminded ‘It is wrong’. 

My Skin Your Skin is a strong, stirring, confidence and determined non-fiction picture book. Bookwagon urges schools and homes to read, know and share its truths.

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My Skin Your Skin

Let’s talk about race, racism and entitlement

Laura Henry- Allain MBE, illustrated by Onyinye Iwu

(Ladybird)– hardback

My Skin Your Skin; we are each different from our eye colour, our height, our faith or our family setting. However ‘our differences make us amazing‘! Thereafter, we should be ‘proud of what makes us different‘. Yet as Laura Henry-Allain explains, ‘people who share the same- colour are often said to be of the same race‘. However, ‘race is just a way of grouping people together.’
After all the world is full of may different races. Thereafter there can be many differences within races. Furthermore, we should not be made to feel ‘uncomfortable’ about our race by those who are racist. At this point, the writer explains the background of racism-  what it is and isn’t it. Thereafter she explains how racism might manifest itself and where, from home to school, in shops and where we worship. She offers advice about what to do when people are racist.
Alongside empathic statements and descriptions about racism, the writer explains that this is a ‘big and difficult problem‘ that ‘has been around for years and years’. Thereafter she explains that it is up to us to ‘learn to recognise racism and speak out’ when we see it.’ From this, she suggests ways we can ‘stop racism from spreading’ including being kind and respectful, speaking up, reading books about people from other races and ‘making friends with others from different races’. Then again, she suggests that we celebrate ‘our different races and cultures’.
We know the illustrator, Onyinye Iwu from her work in Too Small Tola and Hey You!. in this superb non-fiction book, her pictures are descriptive, certain and inclusive. Bookwagon recommends My Skin Your Skin highly for schools and families.


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