“From a Docent” Blog: Our Ed Team’s Way of Talking Off Hours

From a Docent HeaderOne might think after talking history, social studies, immigration policy and more to and thousands (and thousands) of visitors each year, the Education Team might take a break and do something else with their lives. We do– but we also obsessively help each other out.
Our internal blog connects each interpretive guide with resources, ideas, storytelling techniques as a means of peer-to-peer learning. It gives us a chance to continually expand the canvases on which we paint the nuances of history. Lately, it seems the New Yorker has had a lot of relevant articles and essays. By no means is this an endorsement of that publication– but they have been doing their part to continue discussions of race, culture, ethnicity and gender pertaining to Asian and Pacific Islander Americans.
Here’s a good example of what we share with each other… “Surrendering”


Meet Shiro Kashino: World War II Veteran and Hero

Community Stories


In 1943, despite their incarceration in numerous concentration camps throughout America, 4,000 Japanese Americans

volunteered to fight in the war against the Axis powers. Compiled into a stunning graphic novel, 6 veterans’ stories take on a whole new life; trying to make sense of personal sacrifice, family honor and bravery. Here is an animated version of the Shiro Kashino story. The full graphic novel is available for sale and the corresponding curriculum guide can be found here.

The novel is appropriate for 5th graders and above, though teachers may use their discretion in presenting this material to 4th grade students.

The museum helps students explore the experiences of Japanese Americans during the war years by:

  1. Taking them on a historical walking tour of old Japantown (Nihonmachi); or
  2. An historical immersion into family life in 1936 Nihonmachi through character plays, object triggers and a young woman’s diary.

To schedule a tour or educational experience contact


Taking On The Bully #2

“When children are singled out because of a shared characteristic — such as race, sexual orientation, or religion — or a perceived shared characteristic, the issue not only affects that individual but the entire community. Policymakers believe that AAPI students who are bullied face unique challenges, including religious, cultural, and language barriers. In addition, there has been a spike of racial hostility following the September 11 attacks against children perceived to be Muslim. The classroom should be the safest place for youth, but for some AAPI students, it can be a very dangerous environment.

— Kiran Ahuja, Executive Director White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders

Here is a video of Former NFL Wide Receiver and former member of the President’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders Hines Ward telling his story– of overcoming bullying and his experience growing up as a multiracial boy. When students make the connection that anyone can be bullied and that anyone can overcome it, they are better able to speak up or speak out about their own experiences or those of their friends.

For more on the #ActToChange movement from the White House Initiative on AAPIs (Asian American Pacific Islanders) go to