Celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage

May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month!

Colorín Colorado celebrates family traditions and the rich diversity of Asian and Pacific Americans with books, activities, and a variety of resources and ideas for ELL educators.

Explore the following:

  • Booklists: Find great books written about a wide range of Asian and Pacific American cultural experiences for children and adolescents.
  • Author Interviews: Watch online interviews with Asian American children's book authors.
  • Classroom resources: Find links to other organizations and resources to help you celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month.

Booklists: APA Heritage

These booklists celebrate the wonderfully diverse cultures of the Asian Pacific. They also reflect the resilience of Asian Pacific Americans who have made this country their home even in the most difficult of circumstances.



Children's Book Publishers and Blogs: Asian Pacific American Interest

Meet the Author: Interviews & Websites

Information and Resources 

Xiao-lin Yin-Croft

Building Bridges: An Interview with a Chinese Educator of ELLs

Originally from China, Xiao-lin Yin-Croft learned English as an adult and now helps young Chinese students in the U.S. bridge the cultural and language gap that they face from an early age. In this interview, Xiao-lin shares her experiences coming of age as a student in China's Cultural Revolution, and describes the strategies she uses to help her students develop the language skills they need to succeed in the U.S.


From the Classroom: Working with Chinese ELLs

Xiao-lin Yin-Croft offers some insight on Chinese immigrant communities in the U.S. and how cultural influences shape Chinese students' experiences in the classroom. She also offers some ideas about outreach to Chinese parents and describes some particular nuances that Chinese students struggle with when learning English, including details of pronunciation, grammar, and language usage.

Parent Reading Tip Sheets

Our parent reading tip sheets are available in 11 languages, including Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Tagalog, and Hmong!

Research Reports: Asian Pacific Students

These reports focus on educational trends, opportunities, and challenges documented within the Asian Pacific population.  Topics include the "model minority" myth and how to support the academic and linguistic needs of diverse groups of Asian Pacific students.

DREAMers & DACA: Information for Schools

Changes in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) immigration policy would have an impact on a wide range of groups served by K-12 schools and higher education, including: students in high school, college, and graduate school; young professionals, including thousands of teachers working across the country; and children whose parents and older siblings may be affected.

Diverse backgrounds among undocumented immigrants

The undocumented population of the U.S. includes immigrants from around the world. Many of those individuals are advocating for more visibility in conversations about immigration. Here are some resources that highlight that diversity:

Classroom Resources

Learn more about the resources that organizations such as the Smithsonian Institution and PBS are offering for Asian Pacific
American Heritage Month.

Background Information

APA Activities and Lesson Plans

PBS Educational Resources

PBS Learning Media


Grades: 7-12


  • KQED: Resettlement to Redress

    Resettlement to Redress: Rebirth of the Japanese-American Community examines the resettlement of Japanese-Americans after World War II through the signing of HR442 by President Reagan in 1988, wherein it was formally acknowledged that interment was based on racism and merited an apology and reparation.

Grades: 9-12

Airing weekly on PBS, the Emmy award-winning series Independent Lens introduces new documentaries and dramas made by independent filmmakers who are taking creative risks.

  • PBS: Asian Pacific American Heritage

    This special PBS collection of stories explores the history, traditions and culture of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States.

  • Independent Lens

    This documentary series features stories from the Asia Pacific as well as stories about Asian Americans living in the U.S.

  • Ancestors in America: Asian American

    Asian Americans are one of the fastest growing yet least known groups of immigrants in the United States. Join PBS for an exploration of their history and stories.

  • Becoming American: The Chinese Experience

    Bill Moyers and a group of veteran producers explore the dramatic history of the Chinese in America, and confront myths that have flourished over time about their experiences.

  • American Experience: Daughter from Danang

    In 1975, with the end of the war in Vietnam imminent, Mai Thi Kim, a poor, young Vietnamese woman, sent her seven-year-old daughter to America as part of a controversial evacuation program. The little girl was adopted by a single woman, renamed Heidi and brought up in Tennessee. Twenty-two years later, Heidi tracked down her birth mother and visited Danang. The reunion that had raised so many hopes and expectations for Heidi and Kim quickly became rife with tension and misunderstanding as the cultural gulf between Heidi and her Vietnamese family grew larger and larger.