Educator Resources: U.S. and Asia Relations
This educator resources page featuring U.S. and Asia relations is designed to assist educators in developing student understanding of U.S. and Asia relations during the Donald Trump presidency. Aimed at Government, U.S. History, and Political Science educators at the secondary and university levels, these resources include guided presentations, activities, and projects that incorporate a range of skills-based competencies such as critical thinking, analyzing multiple sources, communicating ideas, and project-based assessments and applications.
Overview of Topic: U.S. and Asia Relations
Under President Donald Trump, the U.S. has clashed with China over trade and technology, with Japan over the Trans-Pacific Partnership, with South Korea over U.S. troops stationed in the country, and with North Korea on nuclear negotiations. This lesson provides background information on each of these topics, and prompts students to think critically about the current state of affairs between the U.S. and Asia, as well as implications of the November 2020 elections on U.S. foreign policy towards Asia.
Lesson Introduction and Presentations
Ask students to individually or in small groups brainstorm about what they know about U.S. and Asia relations during the Trump presidency. Tools for brainstorm include:
Hold a class discussion to look for themes and commonalities among responses. Consider creating an overview list of responses to return to as students learn additional content. Guide the conversation into a list of questions for further research. You can share and add what you hope students will learn during the lesson as well.
Class Activities and Discussions
Return to the earlier discussion and clear up any misconceptions, answer student questions, and create new questions. Some class discussion questions include:
- Why are U.S. and Asia relations important to both regions?
- What can you discern overall about the Trump administration's policy towards Asia?
- How might U.S. policy towards one country impact policies towards others?
- How does U.S. policy towards Asia impact people residing in the U.S.? In Asia?
After having deepened their content knowledge and background on U.S. and Asia relations, have students watch a video replay of Asia Society Texas Center's panel discussion, Impact of Election 2020 on U.S.–Asia Relations. Ask students to specifically focus on implications of and for the 2020 elections.
As a culminating activity, students can complete the following projects:
Write a position paper.
- Students select one of four topics of interest and write a position paper, writing from their own beliefs or taking on the role of an elected official.
- More resources on writing position papers »
Create an infographic.
- Students choose one of four topics and create an infographic featuring key facts, findings, and takeaways.
- More resources on creating infographics »
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Our interns work closely with Asia Society staff to research and develop lesson materials. Michelle Reyes, a student intern from the University of St. Thomas International Studies program, contributed greatly to the research and development of these materials. Learn more about our interns »
World 101's interactive lesson module: What happened when China joined the WTO?
Council on Foreign Relations: Timeline of U.S. relations with China
Congressional Research Service: South Korea: Background on U.S. relations
Major support for Education & Outreach programs at Asia Society Texas Center comes from Nancy C. Allen, Chinhui Juhn and Eddie Allen, and Mary Lawrence Porter, as well as The Brown Foundation, Inc., and The Houston Endowment. Additional funding also provided by the George and Mary Josephine Hamman Foundation, as well as through contributions from the Friends of Asia Society, a dedicated group of individuals committed to bringing exceptional programming and exhibitions to Asia Society Texas Center.
About Asia Society Texas Center
With 13 locations throughout the world, Asia Society is the leading educational organization promoting mutual understanding and strengthening partnerships among the peoples, leaders, and institutions of Asia and West. Asia Society Texas Center executes the global mission with a local focus, enriching and engaging the vast diversity of Houston through innovative, relevant programs in arts and culture, business and policy, education, and community outreach.