Summary: Rural Voices Radio, a product of the National Writing Project’s Rural Voices, Country Schools program, celebrates what is “genuinely good, genuinely rural” about America’s rural schools. Each half-hour program comprises original poems, stories, and essays by teachers and students from Writing Project sites across the country about the places they call home.
Rural Voices Radio is a series of 14 half-hour radio programs created by the National Writing Project as a culmination to its Annenberg-sponsored Rural Voices, Country Schools project. Rural Voices, Country Schools, which engaged teachers and students from across the United States in using writing to better understand their communities’ assets and challenges, resulted in mountains of original poems, stories, and essays by teachers and students about the places they call home.
As the program concluded, educators worked with award-winning radio producer Deborah Begel (Fresh Air, Selected Shorts) and project director Elyse Eidman-Aadahl to craft them into audio programs. Poet and writer Kim Stafford, who directed the Oregon Writing Project at Lewis & Clark, served as host. The programs offer a rare glimpse of America’s back roads and countryside through the eyes of children, some as young as first grade.
Collectively, Rural Voices Radio programs communicate the power each of us has to speak to the heart through words and sound, thereby inviting others to better know us and our places.