That initiative began with Mr. Nixon's 1972 trip to the PRC, which ended a quarter-century of isolation between those two nations. A terrific resource to use with your student's is this curated collection from the Nixon Presidential Library and Museum. That site has excerpts of five taped audio conversations between the President and others. Each one is accompanied by a transcript. It would be fun to divide the class into five groups, assign each a different conversation, have them report out, then lead a whole class discussion of President Nixon's goals and methods in dealing with communist China during the height of the Cold War.
President Nixon's diplomacy also set up the next stage in that diplomatic relationship. More specifically, it set in motion a series of steps resulting in full diplomatic relations between the United States and the PRC during President Carter in 1979. (This video [4:20] shows President Carter's 1978 address to the nation announcing that agreement.)