'120523-N-DH124-802' photo (c) 2012, Naval Surface Warriors - license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month in the United States. Here’s a short explanation of its background from Infoplease:

“In May 1990 …President George H. W. Bush designated May to be Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. May was chosen to commemorate the immigration of the first Japanese to the United States on May 7, 1843, and to mark the anniversary of the completion of the transcontinental railroad on May 10, 1869. The majority of the workers who laid the tracks were Chinese immigrants.”

The name has since been changed to Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.

You might also be interested in:

The Best Websites To Learn About The Hmong

The Best Sites For Learning About The Marshall Islands

The Best Resources On Japanese American Internment In World War II

The Best Resources For Chinese New Year

The Best Resources – Critical & Positive – For Teaching With “Moana”

A Beginning List Of The Best Sites For ELLs To Learn About The Pacific Region


Here are my choices for The Best Sites For Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (not in order of preference, and that are, of course, accessible to English Language Learners):


Colorin Colorado has resources on the month specifically for ELL’s.

Infoplease has a lot of resources, though most are not necessarily accessible to ELL’s and would have to be modified by a teacher. But it’s a great site, nevertheless.

The Smithsonian Institution has Asian Pacific American Heritage teaching resources.

EDSITEment also has lesson resources.

Most of these lessons (apart from the resources at Colorin Colorado), though, would have to be modified for ELL’s.

U.S. official cites misconduct in Japanese American internment cases is a fascinating article in The Los Angeles Times discussing how the present United States Solicitor General is apologizing for the misconduct of one of his predecessors for his role in defending Japanese-American internment camps during World War II. During the war, he chose not to reveal a government study concluding that Japanese-Americans were not a risk to U.S. security.

World War II: Internment of Japanese Americans is a photo gallery from The Atlantic.

Asian American and Pacific Islander Women Profiles is from NBC News.

Here’s a Playing For Change video. This is how they describe it:

“Hawai’i Aloha” features dozens of Hawai‘i’s top artists across many genres, and over 1,000 youth from 10 Hawaiian charter schools in one epic song. Recorded live across 27 locations, this is Hawaiiʻs most widely known song, used to close important gatherings of all sizes. It is a song of unity and Aloha ‘Aina (Aloha for one’s birthplace, land and home).

NBC Begins Useful Series Of Videos About Asian Americans & Pacific Islanders

NBC “A To Z” Features Asian American & Pacific Islanders Making Their Mark

I Am Asian American is from Teaching Tolerance.

Write Our Stories is a huge collection of stories from NBC News related to Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.

Learning Together is a new teacher resource site from the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center. It seems to focus on a new theme each month (how did I not know that April was Arab American Heritage Month?), and collects past resources in its archives section.

Asian Americans is the PBS site for the series of the same name.

The Diversity of Asian American and Pacific Islander Identities is from Teaching Tolerance.


Viral Histories: Stories of Racism, Resilience, and Resistance in Asian American Communities is from The Smithsonian.

Google has made an announcement:

Google Arts & Culture has partnered with 48 cultural institutions and experts of Asian American and Pacific Islander (API) cultures to celebrate and launch a new hub dedicated to Asian American and Pacific Islander cultures.

Their announcement shares lots of details – it looks pretty impressive.

Just note that the announcement itself doesn’t include the correct link to the new site (though I’m sure they’ll fix it soon).  Go to the link that I’ve included in this post.

What’s Missing from Classrooms When Asian American and Pacific Islander Voices Aren’t Included? is from Smithsonian Magazine.

Lesson Plans: Untold Civil Rights Stories Online is from the UCLA Asian American Studies Center.

Asian Pacific American Heritage Month is from The National Park Service.

May Is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month! is from Learning For Justice.

Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders share their stories of racism and discrimination and how they’ve stood up. is from NBC News.

Classroom Resources on AAPI History and Contemporary Life is from Facing History.

Asian Pacific American History is from The Smithsonian.

100 ways Asian American and Pacific Islander communities and allies have found solutions to racism and violence. is from NBC News.

AAPI Trailblazers: Anna May Wong, Larry Itliong, and Mee Moua is from Facing History.

Suggestions and feedback, as always, are welcome.

If you found this post useful, you might want to look at previous “The Best…” lists and also consider subscribing to this blog for free.