May is Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month – a celebration of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States. The month of May was chosen because it commemorates the first Japanese immigrants to the United States on May 7, 1843. For educators, this offers an opportunity to celebrate the rich history of Asian and Pacific Islander heritage in the United States.
The sites below offer a vast array of resources for different subject areas and grade levels.
Documentary: Asian Americans
This PBS series covers the history, contributions and challenges of Asian Americans.
Asian-Americans K-12 Education Curriculum
Asian American Advancing Justice offers lesson plans and activities that cover the history and current experience of Asian Americans.
Asian Pacific American Heritage Month
This site offers ready-to-use lesson plans, student activities, collection guides and research aids to put the power of primary source documents to work in your classroom.
Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center
This site connects educators with Asian American and Pacific Islander voices, stories and community-created resources, including Innovative, community-centered museum experiences throughout the United States.
Asian American Racial Justice Toolkit
The Asian American Pacific Islanders for Civic Empowerment offers these models designed to build structural awareness of Asian Americans’ experiences and how they are tied to the oppression of others.
A Different Asian American Timeline
This ChangeLab timeline places Asian Americans within a broader context of capitalism and racism in America.
Celebrating Asian American and pacific islander Heritage
This Library of Congress blog post lists dozens of primary source documents for studying Asian Heritage Month, from traditional dance performances to music and newspapers chronicling historical events.
We Are Not a Stereotype
The Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center offers this video series that breaks down what it means to be Asian Pacific American.
Jennifer Snelling is a freelance blogger from Eugene, Oregon.