The nonleptonic two body decays involving a light tensor meson in final states are studied in the perturbative QCD approach based on factorization. The decay modes with a tensor meson emitted, are prohibited in naive factorization, since the emission diagram with a tensor meson produced from vacuum is vanished. While contributions from the so-called hard scattering emission diagrams and annihilation type diagrams are important and calculable in the perturbative QCD approach. The branching ratios of most decays are in the range of -, which are bigger by 1 or 2 orders of magnitude than the predictions given by the naive factorization, but consistent with the predictions from the QCD factorization and the recent experimental measurements. We also give the predictions for the direct asymmetries, some of which are large enough for the future experiments to measure. We also find that, even with a small mixing angle, the mixing between and can bring remarkable changes to both branching ratios and the direct asymmetries for some decays involving mesons. For decays with a vector meson and a tensor meson in final states, we predict a large percentage of transverse polarization contributions due to the contributions of the orbital angular momentum of the tensor mesons.