10 Women Who Made History

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on March 4, 2022

Here at Facing History, we see awareness months as opportunities to deepen our knowledge of and attention to the histories and contemporary experiences of historically marginalized communities. However, the focus on celebrating these communities over one particular month can further marginalize the very experiences we are hoping to elevate. With this in mind, what follows is an invitation to engage with important themes raised by Women’s History Month this March
and throughout all of the months of the year.

This Women’s History Month, we invite teachers to take a deeper dive into the histories and experiences of women around the nation in work with their students. One powerful way to do this is to learn more about individual women’s lives both past and present.

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Topics: Women's History Month, Black History, Asian American and Pacific Islander History

5 YA Books on AAPI Life

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on May 19, 2021

Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month each May offers a valuable opportunity to evaluate the kinds of reading materials we are sharing with students throughout the year, and to consider whether Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) experiences need to have a greater presence. Particularly this year, as racism and violence targeting AAPI people becomes more visible, it can be challenging to sift through the growing body of reading material and pinpoint the texts that are presented at an appropriate reading level, and in ways that are relatable to adolescent readers.

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Topics: Reading List, Asian American and Pacific Islander History

5 New Books on API Experiences

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on May 5, 2021

This May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. It is a fabulous time to ensure that we are actively engaging with the histories, literatures, and contemporary life experiences of Asian and Pacific Islander American peoples. Below are five new books released in the last year that range in format from historical scholarship to intergenerational memoir to novel. Spanning communities that hail from across the Asian continent, these accounts can be great learning companions for educators and other adults eager to deepen their engagement with these important themes.

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Topics: Asian American and Pacific Islander History

Combating the Erasure of API Experiences and Anti-API Violence

Posted by Facing History and Ourselves on April 2, 2021

On Monday, March 29th, a Filipino woman was brutally attacked in New York City while bystanders, including security guards, looked on without intervening. On Tuesday, March 16th, six Asian Pacific Islander (API) women lost their lives in three consecutive shootings in the Atlanta area. Weeks earlier around Lunar New Year, a wave of xenophobic violence swept the San Francisco Bay Area, metro New York and other US cities where numerous API people were attacked and some lost their life. 

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Topics: Racism, Asian American and Pacific Islander History

History As Our Guide: Understanding What Divides, and What Connects

Posted by Charles Thomas Lai FitzGibbon on August 31, 2020

We ended last school year in a time of unraveling. On May 25th, 2020, George Floyd was murdered under the knee of Derek Chauvin while three other police officers stood by as accomplices. We as educators rose to support and hold space for our students to process and situate this moment in its larger movement, in defense of Black lives, and in the mourning of so many others. A reckoning took hold on the conscience of the nation, and James Baldwin’s words rang loud and clear: “History is literally present in all that we do.” We each were personally called to face our own positionality, our own biases, and our own complicity in sustaining systemic oppression—a call that is and will be ongoing. 

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Topics: Racism, Black History, Asian American and Pacific Islander History

Embracing AAPI Histories and Students All Year Long

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on May 28, 2020

Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month is an invitation to pay attention to the history, identities, and stories of Asian and Pacific Islander American (AAPI) peoples. It is also a chance for educators to better understand and support AAPI students. And as AAPI people continue to be victimized by increased acts of racist violence in the wake of the pandemic, educators face additional challenges around how to support students from those communities⁠, lend historical context to these harrowing events, and stand against anti-Asian racism. As Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month draws to a close and we move into the summer months, we invite you to check out our newest resources on these subjects and use them all year long:

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Topics: Asian American and Pacific Islander History

New Books on Asian and Pacific American History and Life

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on May 19, 2020

This Asian/Pacific American (APA) Heritage Month, news of mounting discrimination and violence against Asian Americans has been drawing increased attention to the experiences of this community, past and present. As shutdowns and social distancing recommendations lead Americans to spend more time at home, now is the perfect time to deepen our understanding of the richness of Asian American and Pacific Islander American history, as well as the community's immense resilience and creativity. The following five books released within the last year offer a rich complement to Facing History's curricular materials for any educator eager to learn more about the struggles, resilience, and triumphs of APA peoples. Below, the publisher of each book outlines the material you can expect to encounter:

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Topics: Asian American and Pacific Islander History

At Facing History and Ourselves, we value conversation—in classrooms, in our professional development for educators, and online. When you comment on Facing Today, you're engaging with our worldwide community of learners, so please take care that your contributions are constructive, civil, and advance the conversation.


Welcome to Facing Today, a Facing History blog. Facing History and Ourselves combats racism and antisemitism by using history to teach tolerance in classrooms around the globe.

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