This study describes efforts in a U.S. teacher education program to raise the teacher candidates' awareness of how place impacts schooling. The preservice teachers and second graders exchanged pen pal letters based on books set in contemporary rural America. The teacher candidates enacted four major discourses in the correspondence: personal, rural, global and traditional. Without connections to the children personally, as fellow rural residents or as participants in a conversation about rural life, the preservice teachers were left only to communicate through traditional and globalized discourses.
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