Duplication; Disclaimer | American Revolution ELA activities
Asians and Asian-American Children in Picture Books
- Bishop, Claire. The Five Chinese Brothers. 1938, 1989. Each brother has a unique power (stretches/swallows/holds breath) which comes in handy during a trip with what they can carry along and what they can use when in danger. (Stereotyped version: see Hou-Tien)
- Buck, Pearl. The Big Wave.
- Chu, Daniel and Samuel. Passage to the Golden Gate: A History of the Chinese in America to 1910. NY: Zenith Books, 1967.
- Garland, Sherry. The Lotus Seed. A lotus seed and its pink blossom links a Vietnamese-American family with their left-behind country.
- Goldin, Barbara Diamond. Red Means Good Fortune: A Story of San Francisco's Chinatown. NY: Viking, 1994. (54 ps) Twelve-year-old Jin Mun, working for his father's laundry in San Francisco's Chinatown, is shocked to discover that one of his neighbors is a slave girl, forbidden to leave her house.
- Hong, Lily Toy. How the Ox Star Fell from Heaven. Morton Grove, Illinois: Albert Whitman, 1991. A Chinese folk tale which explains why the ox was banished from heaven to become the farmer's beast of burden.
- Hou-tien, Cheng. Six Chinese Brothers. Chinese farmer's six sons each have special talents (cleverness, arms stretch, hard head, iron skin, heat resistance, stretch legs). Father falls ill. Remedy is pearl from king's palace. Soldiers arrest first son. To be executed. Allowed to see father. Another son is sent back in his place. Last son finds jewels insea. King has banquet.
- Lee, Huy Voun. At the Beach. NY: Holt, 1994.
- Lee, Milly. Nim and the War Effort. New York : Farrar Straus Giroux, 1997. In her determination to prove that an American can win the contest for the war effort in WWII, Nim does something which leaves her Chinese grandfather both bewildered and proud.
- Levine, Ellen. I Hate English! NY: Scholastic, 1989.
Mei Mei talks, writes, sings, and thinks in Chinese. Will she ever be comfortable with English?
- Levinson, Riki. Our Home Is The Sea. Illus. by Dennis Luzak. NY: Dutton, 1988. A Chinese boy hurries home from school to his family's houseboat in Hong Kong harbor. It is the end of the school year, and he is anxious to join his father and grandfather in their family profession, fishing.
- Look, Lenore. Love As Strong As Ginger. Atheneum, 1999. A Chinese American girl comes to realize how hard her grandmother works to fulfill her dreams when they spend a day together at the grandmother's job cracking crabs.
- Louie, Ai-Ling. Yeh-Shen: A Cinderella Story from China. Illus. by Ed Young. NY: Philomel, 1982. Chinese version of the Cinderella story.
- Mahy, Margaret. The Seven Chinese Brothers. Illus. by Jean and Mou-sien Tseng. New York: Scholastic, 1990.
- McCunn, Ruthanne Lum. Pie Biter. Illus. by You-shan Tang. San Francisco, CA: Design Enterprises, 1983. A Chinese boy who comes to the United States to work on a railroad develops a fondness for pies that becomes legendary.
- Meltzer, Milton. The Chinese Americans. NY: Crowell, 1980.
- Merrill, Jean. The Girl Who Loved Caterpillars: A Twelfth Century Tale From Japan. Illus. by Floyd Cooper. NY: Philomel, 1992.
- Mosel, Arlene. The Funny Little Woman. 1972 (1973 Caldecott) Asian gingerbread boy made from rice.
- Mosel, Arlene. Tikki Tikki Tembo. 1968. Young boy must repeat entire name of honored brother in time of emergency.
- Namioka, Lensey. Yang the Second and Her Secret Admirers. Boston: Little Brown, 1998. (130 ps.)
- Namioka, Lensey. Yang, the Youngest and His Terrible Ear. NY: Dell, 1994. (134 ps.)
- Rappaport, Doreen. The Journey of Meng. Illus. by Yang Ming-Yi. New York: Dial, 1992.
- Rappaport, Doreen. The Long-Haired Girl: A Chinese Legend. Illus. by Yang Ming-Yi. New York: Dial, 1995.
- Reddix, Valerie. Dragon Kite of the Autumn Moon. Will Tad-Tin's wild dragon kite carry all his family's troubles away?
- Say, Allen. El Chino. Houghton Mifflin, 1990. (32 ps.) This is the story of Bill Wong, who defied stereotypes and became a famous bullfighter in Spain. (VLF/4)
- Schlein, Miriam. The Year of the Panda. Illus. by Kam Mak. NY: Harper & Row, 1990.
- Sun, Chyng Feng. Mama Bear. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1994. 32 ps. Mei-Mei wants a certain teddy bear for Christmas more than anything else in the world, but it's too expensive. She works hard but is heartbroken when she still cannot afford it - until her mother's love provides a very special gift. (VLF/1)
- Trefinger. Li Lun, Lad of Courage. 1947. (93 ps)
- Wallace, Ian. Chin Chiang and the Dragon's Dance. Atheneum,1984. A young Chinese American boy (Chin Chiang) during the Chinese New Year worries that his clumsiness during the dragon dance will make him "mess up" and ruin his grandfather's dragon dance, bringing shame to his family and community .
- Waters, Kate and Madeline Slovenz-Low. Lion Dancer: Ernie Wan's Chinese New Year. Photos by Martha Cooper. New York: Scholastic, 1992.
- Wyndham, Robert. Chinese Mother Goose Rhymes. Philomel, 1968.
- Yee, Paul. Tales From Gold Mountain. NY: Macmillan, 1989. (64 ps.) Eight stories reflecting the optimism of the Chinese overcaming prejudice and adversity to build a place for themselves in N. America.
- Yep, Laurence. The Boy Who Swallowed Snakes. Illus. by Jean and Mou-Sien Tseng. New York: Scholastic, 1994. An honest young boy tries to get rid of an ever-increasing number of snakes that have come with the bowlful of silver coins he found.
- Yep, Laurence. The Butterfly Boy. Illus. by Jeanne M. Lee. NY: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1993.
- Yep, Laurence. The Shell Woman and the King: A Chinese Folktale. Dial Books for Young Readers, 32 ps. Good Wu marries a young woman who can change herself into a shell. Because of this ability, a cruel ruler wished to own her. In order to escape and save herself and her husband, she must perform three wonders. Ming-Yi's watercolor paintings give the reader a real feel for China.
- Young, Ed. Little Plum. Philomel, 1994. (32 ps.) When hard times fall on this village, tiny Little Plum proves himself by outwitting the strongest in the land. (VLF/K1)
- Young, Ed. Lon Po Po: A Red-Riding Hood Story from China. NY: Philomel Books, 1989 32 ps. (VLF/1) A hungry wolf attempts to convince three children that he is their grandmother.
- Breckler, Rosemary. Hoang Breaks the Lucky Teapot. Illus. by Adrian Frankel.Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 1992. (X)
- Garland, Sherry. The Lotus Seed. Illus. by Tatsuro Kiuchi. San Diego, CA: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1993.
A lotus seed and its pink blossom links a Vietnamese-American family with their left-behind country.
- Garland, Sherry. My Father's Boat. NY: Scholastic, 1998.
A Vietnamese-American boy spends a day with his father on his shrimp boat, listening as he describes how his own father fishes on the South China Sea.
- Keller, Holly . Grandfather's Dream. NY: Greenwillow, 32 pages.
After the end of the war in Vietnam, a young boy's grandfather dreams of restoring the wetlands of the Mekong delta, hoping that the large cranes that once lived there will return.
- Lee, Jeanne M. Toad Is The Uncle Of Heaven. Holt, 1985.
A brave and intelligent toad risks death when he asks the King of Heaven to end a long drought.
- Schmidt, Jeremy and Ted Wood. Two Lands, One Heart: An American Boy's Journey to His Mother's Vietnam. Photos by Ted Wood. New York: Walker, 1995. (44 ps)
A young boy bridges his Vietnamese and American heritage by traveling to Vietnam with his mother, a former Vietnamese refugee.
- Surat, Michele Maria. Angel Child, Dragon Child. Scholastic, 1983. 32 ps. Hoa is lonely so far from her home in Vietnam, especially when she is teased by a bully named Raymond. When the school principal insists that Raymond write Hoa's story, they find a new way to understand and help each other. (VLF/2)
- Vuong, Lynette Dyer. The Golden Carp and Other Tales of Vietnam. Lothrop, 1993. (128 ps.) Collection of Vietnamese folktales that are well researched, well written, and beautifully illustrated. Included are explanations of some traditions, pronunciations, and comparisons to other cultural traditions.
- Vuong, Lynette Dyer. Sky Legends of Vietnam. Harper Collins, 1993. (128 ps.) Elegant collection of Vietnamese stories explaining the origins of the sun, moon, and the stars in the sky. It includes elements of culture, key to pronouncing Vietnamese names, and music and lyrics to a song.
- Baker, Keith. The Magic Fan. San Diego, CA: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1989.
- Brown, Tricia. Konnichiwa! I Am a Japanese-American Girl. Photos by Kazuyoshi Arai. New York: Holt, 1995.
- Bunting, Eve. So Far from the Sea. NY: Clarion, 1998. When seven-year-old Laura and her family visit Grandfather's grave at the Manzanar War Relocation Center, the Japanese American child leaves behind a special symbol.
- Coerr, Eleanor. Sadako. Illus. by Ed Young. NY: Putnam, 1993 (48 ps.) A courageous story of a young girl's desire to live as she struggles against leukemia which she developed after the bomb attack on Hiroshima.
- Coerr, Eleanor. Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes.
- Friedman, Ina. How My Parents Learned to Eat. Houghton Mifflin, 1984. (32 ps.) Chopsticks or forks? Which one would you use if you were trying to impress your date? In this delightful story, a couple fromtwo different cultures find common ground. (VLF/2)
- Hamanaka, Shelia. The Journey: Japanese Americans, Racism & Renewal. New York: Orchard, 1990.
- Havil, Juanita. Sato and the Elephants. Lothrop, 32 ps. Inspired by the true story of a Japanese ivory carver, a young artist refuses to use ivory to carve when he discovers the source.
- Hosozawa-Nagano, Elain. Chopsticks from America. Chicago, IL: Polychrome Pub, 1994. When their family moves to Japan for a year, two Japanese American children find that they need to make a lot of adjustments.
- Ike, Jane Hori. A Japanese Fairy Tale, 1982. A lovely woman selects ugly man as husband.
- Irwin, Hadley. Kim/Kimi. Despite a warm relationship with her mother, stepfather, and half brother, sixteen-year-old Kim feels the need to find answers about the Japanese American father she never knew.
- Johnston, Tony. Fishing Sunday. NY: Tambourine Books, 1996. A young boy is embarrassed by his grandfather's old Japanese ways, but on one of their Fishing Sundays, he learns to see Grandfather in a new light.
- Kroll, Virginia. Pink Paper Swans. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Eerdmans, 1994 Janetta, intrigued by the paper animals her neighbor Mrs. Tsujimoto makes, learns the art of origami and becomes Mrs. Tsujimoto's hands when her arthritis makes it difficult for her to continue.
- Kudlinski, Kathleen. Pearl Harbor is Burning! A Story of World War II. NY: Puffin, 1993. When his family moves to Hawaii in 1941, Frank feels out of place until he makes friends with a Japanese American boy--the day before the bombing of Pearl Harbor.
- Kuklin, Susan. Kodomo: Children of Japan. NY: Putnam's, 1995.
- Littlewood, Valerie. Great Grandfather's House. Greenwillow, 90 ps. Keiko, a seven-year-old girl, lives in the city and meets her six-year-old male cousin, Yoji, when she spends three months with her great-grandparents in rural Japan. The illustrations highlight some of Keiko's escapades.
- Maruki, Toshi. Hiroshima No Pika. NY: Lothrop, Lee & Shepard, 1980.
- Matsutani, Miyoko. The Crane Maiden. Illus. by Chihiro Iwasaki. New York: Parents', 1968.
- McDermott, Gerald. The Stonecutter. Morrow, 1983 (32 ps.) Tasaku is a stonecutter who suddenly desires to be as powerful as the elements, but learns that he can be powerful by being himself. (VLF/K1)
- McDermott, Gerald. The Woodcutter and His Wife. Japanese comparison to "The Fisherman and His Wife" and "The Talking Fish"
- Mitsui Brown, Janet. Thanksgiving At Obaachan's. Chicago, Ill: Polychrome, 1994. A Japanese American girl describes Thanksgiving at her grandmother's house.
- Mochizuki, Ken. Baseball Saved Us. Lee & Low, 1993. (32 ps.) "Shorty" and his family have been sent to a Japanese-American internment camp during World War II. Even after the family returns home, baseball offers a way to overcome the misery that prejudice has caused. (VLF/3)
- Mori, Kyoko. Shizuko's Daughter. Ballantine (256 ps.) Mori's first novel, set in modern Japan, is a beautifully written story. Sometimes blunt, but often poetic, it is the story of Yuki whose mother, Shizuko, commits suicide when Yuki is twelve. Through her art, she survives the isolation she feels, to become a strong, sensitive woman.
- Morimoto, Junko. Kenju's Forest. Sydney, Australia: Collins Publishing Australia, 1989.
- Morimoto, Junko. The Inch Boy. NY: Puffin Books, 1984.
- Morimoto, Junko. My Hiroshima. NY: Viking, 1990.
- Narahashi, Keiko. Is That Josie? NY: Margaret McElderry, 1994.
- Sakai, Kimiko. Sachiko Means Happiness. Children's Press, 1990. (32 ps.) Sachiko resents having to look after her grandmother,who has Alzheimer's. But when she comes to understand her grandmother's illness, Sachiko realizes that they can still be happy together. (VLF/4)
- San Souci, Robert D. The Samurai's Daughter. Illus. by Stephen T. Johnson. New York: Dial, 1992.
- Say, Allen. The Bicycle Man. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 1982.
- Say, Allen. Grandfather's Journey. Houghton Mifflin, 1993 (32 ps.) The author shares the joys and sorrows of his grandfather's life in America and Japan.
- Say, Allen. Once Under the Cherry Blossom Tree. A miserly landlord wakes up one morning to find a cherry tree growing out of his head.
- Say, Allen. Tree of Cranes. Houghton Mifflin, 1991. (32 ps.) A little Japanese boy learns about how his mother celebrated Christmas in the land she came from - - California.
- Shigekawa, Marlene. Blue Jay in the Desert. Chicago, Illinois: Polychrome Publishing, 1993. While living in a relocation camp during World War II, a young Japanese American boy receives a message of hope from his grandfather.
- Snyder, Dianne. The Boy of the Three-Year Nap. illus. by Allen Say. Boston, Houghton Mifflin, 1988. Taro, a lazy poor widow's son, creates a plan disguising himself as an ujigami to marry a wealthy merchant neighbor's daughter. The widow maneuvers the outcome to change Taro's lazy habits.
- Stamm, Claus. Three Strong Women: A Tall Tale from Japan. Illus. by Jean and Mou-sien Tseng. NY: Viking, 1990.
- Tompert, Ann. Bamboo Hats and a Rice Cake. Crown, (32 ps.) An adaptation of a traditional Japanese tale that tells of an elderly couple forced to trade precious possessions in order to buy rice cakes to celebrate the New Year.
- Tsutsui, Yoriko. Anna's Secret Friend. Illus. by Aliko Hayashi. NY: Viking/Kestral, 1986.
- Tsutsui, Yoriko. Before the Picnic. Illus. by Akiko Hayashi. NY: Philomel, 1987.
- Uchida, Yoshiko. The Best Bad Thing. NY: Atheneum, 1983. Rinko is dismayed at having to spend part of her summer vacation helping out in the household of recently widowed Mrs. Hata, but discovers pleasant surprises waiting for her.
- Uchida, Yoshiko. The Birthday Visitor. (32 ps.) Illus. by Charles Robinson. NY: Scribner's, 1975.
Emi is convinced that her seventh birthday will be spoiled by yet another of her parent's ''dull'' visitors from Japan.
- Uchida, Yoshiko. The Bracelet. Philomel, (32 ps.) Drawing on her own childhood as a Japanese-American during World War II, the author has created a powerful story about friendship and material culture. Beautifully illustrated, the main character, seven-year-old Emi, acts as an eloquent spokesperson for those who were forced to live in West Coast internment camps. Students will find her story informative and inspirational. (VLF/4)
- Uchida, Yoshiko. The Happiest Ending. NY: Atheneum, 1985. (112 ps.) When twelve-year-old Rinko learns that a neighbor's daughter is coming from Japan to marry a stranger twice her age, she sets out to change this arrangement and gains new insights into love and adult problems.
- Uchida, Yoshiko. A Jar of Dreams. NY: Atheneum, 1981. (131 ps.) A young girl grows up in a closely-knit Japanese American family in California during the 1930's, a time of great prejudice.
- Uchida, Yoshiko. The Invisible Thread. NY: Beech Tree Paperback, 1995. (136 ps.) Children's author, Yoshiko Uchida, describes growing up in Berkeley, California, as a Nisei, second generation Japanese American, and her family's internment in a Nevada concentration camp during World War II.
- Uchida, Yoshiko. Journey Home. NY: Atheneum, 1978. After their release from an American concentration camp, a Japanese-American girl and her family try to reconstruct their lives amidst strong anti-Japanese feelings which breed fear, distrust, and violence.
- Uchida, Yoshiko. Journey to Topaz. NY: Scribner, 1971. (149 ps.) After the Pearl Harbor attack an eleven-year-old Japanese-American girl and her family are forced to go to an aliens camp in Utah.
- Uchida, Yoshiko. The Magic Purse. Illus. by Keiko Narahashi. New York: Margaret McElderry, 1993.
- Uchida, Yoshiko. The Rooster Who Understood Japanese. NY: Scribner, 1976. Miyo, a young Japanese American, helps her neighbor find a home in the country for her pet.
- Uchida, Yoshiko. Samurai of Gold Hill. NY: Scribner, 1972. (119 ps.) Seeking a new life in nineteenth-century California with his samurai father, a young Japanese finds it difficult to adjust to the idea of being a farmer and not a samurai.
- Uchida, Yoshiko. Urashima Taro. Young man sleeps undersea in wonder world. When returns like "Rip Van Winkle."
- Watkins,Yoko Kawashima. My Brother, My Sister, and I. NY:Bradbury, 224 ps. Two years after World War II, Yoko and her siblings struggle for food, shelter, employment, and education as they await word that their father has survived. This true account reveals Japanese class struggle and family loyalty.
- Wells, Rosemary. Yoko. NY: Hyperion, 1998.
When Yoko brings sushi to school tries it for himself.
- Wisniewski, David. The Warrior and the Wise Man. NY: Lothrop, Lee & Shepard, 1989.
An emperor gives his twin sons, one a warrior and one a wise man, a quest to see which will rule his kingdom.
- Yagawa, Sumiko. The Crane Wife. Trans. by Katherine Paterson. Illus. by Suekichi Akaba. NY: Morrow, 1981.
- Yashima, Taro. Crow Boy. Puffin, 1976. A little boy is spurned and teased by his classmates until a kind teacher discovers his talents. (VLF/3)
- Yep, Laurence. Hiroshima. NY: Scholastic, 1995.
Hawaiian Maori/New Guinea Related
- Choi, Sook Nyul. Halmoni and the Picnic. Houghton Mifflin, 1993. (32 ps.) When Yummi's grandmother, Halmoni, brings lunch for the class picnic, she gets to share more than food with Yummi's friends. (VLF/2)
- Choi, Sook Nyul. Year of Impossible Goodbyes. Japanese and Russian invaders force Sookan and her family to flee to North Korea. (Korea)
- Climo, Shirley. Korean Cinderella. Harper Collins, (48 ps.) Detailed research and vibrant illustrations inspired by patterns on Korean temples make this Korean version of Cinderella come to life. This retelling is about Pear Blossom, the stepdaughter being chosen by the magistrate to be his wife.
- Han, Oki and Plunkett, Stephanie. Sir Whong and the Golden Pig. Dial Books for Young Readers. (32 ps.) A stranger tries to outwit the wise Sir Whong by giving a fake golden pig as collateral for a loan. Beautiful watercolors capture the beauty of ancient Korean culture in this folktale.
- Han, Suzanne Crowder. The Rabbit's Judgment. Illus. by Yumi Heo. NY: Holt, 1994.
- Kraus, Joanna Halpert. Tall Boy's Journey. Illus. by Karen Ritz. Minneapolis, MN: Carolrhoda, 1992. (48 ps.) When Tim arrives in America from Korea, everything about his adoptive family seems strange and scary. But a family friend, also Korean, is able to help him accept his new home. (VLF/5)
- McMahon, Patricia. Chi-Hoon: A Korean Girl. Photos by Michael F. O"Brien. Honesdale, PA: Caroline House/Boyds Mills Press, 1993.
- Paek, Min. Aekyung's Dream. San Francisco, CA: Children's Book Press, 1988.
- Rattigan, Jama Kim. Dumpling Soup. Little, Brown, (32 ps.) A Korean-American author recalls her youth in Oahu as she tells of a young Hawaiian girl trying to make dimplings for her culturally diverse family. A loving, informative New Year's Eve story.
- Rhee, Nami. Magic Spring: A Korean Folktale. New York: Putnam, 1993.
- Guback, Georgia. Luka's Quilt. Greenwillow Books, 1994. (32 ps.) When her grandmother makes Luka a traditional Hawaiian qult as a gift, it isn't what Luka expects. Their disagreement turns to delight, however, when they reach a compromise about how the quilt should look. (VLF/K2)
- Lattimore, Deborah Nourse. Punga: The Goddess of Ugly. Harcourt Brace, (32 ps.) In this richly illustrated Maori folktale, Kiri and Maraweia must learn how to dance the haka properly or be captured by Punga, the goddess of ugly. The twins use advice from their grandmother, the lizard, and the mudfish to outwit Punga.
- Margolies, Barbara. Warriors, Wigmen, and the Crocodile People: Journeys in Papua New Guinea. Four Winds, (40 pp.) An uncomplicated text and fascinating photographs bring the lives of the Huli and the Sepik River people of Papua New Guinea to young readers. Traditions, customs, and everyday life are briefly explained.
Graff, Nancy Price. Where the River Runs: A Portrait of a Refugee Family. Little Brown, (80 ps.) With the use of evocative prose and striking photographs, this book describest he remarkable story of one refugee family from Cambodia who came to America (Boston).
- Lee, Jeanne. Silent Lotus. Farrar, Strauss & Giroux, 1991. (32 ps.) Lotus cannot hear or speak, but she loves to dance. Her special gifts are recognized when her parents bring her to the city and she gets to dance for the king. (VLF/K2)
- Barry, David. The Rajah's Rice. W. H. Freeman, 1994. (32 ps.) In this "mathematical folktale" from India, a young girl named Chandra outwits the Rajah, proving her wisdom and cleverness, when all she asks for is rice as her reward for curing the Rajah's sick elephant. (VLF/3)
- Baillie, Allan. Rebel. Illus. by Di Wu. NY: Ticknor and Fields, 1994. (Burma)
- Blia, Xiong. Nine-in-One Grr! Grr! A Folktale from the Hmong People of Laos. Adapted by Cathy Spagnoli. Illus. by Nancy Hom. San Francisco, CA: Children's Book Press, 1989.
- Heo, Suzanne Crowder. The Rabbit's Escape. Illus. by Yumi Heo. NY: Holt, 1995.
- Shea, Pegi Deitz. The Whispering Cloth: A Refugee's Story. Illus. by Anita Riggio and You Tang. Boyds Mills Press, 1995. (Thai)
- Yolen, Jane. The Seventh Mandarin. Illus. by Ed Young. NY: Seabury, 1970.
While attempting to retrieve the king's kite, the young mandarin leaves the palace grounds for the first time in his life and sees the world outside as it really is.
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