A Fire to Be Kindled

Kelly Smith

How would things be different if everyone adopted learning as a way of life? Can intentional, messy, audacious learning unlock the power to live meaningfully and contribute to the world?

The human capacity for learning has enormous potential, but most of us are stuck with the passive belief that learning is “a thing that happens to you.” Imagine if instead humans made the deliberate choice to learn rather than checking boxes on a syllabus. How can parents, educators, and all of us unleash real learning?

This book offers a fresh approach: the Empowered Learner, helping anyone own their genius and accomplish their goals. A Fire to Be Kindled takes a practical look at the structures surrounding students and explains how thousands of children are becoming Empowered Learners through Prenda microschools.

The world needs Empowered Learners. The sooner we empower ourselves and the next generation, the brighter the future will be.

Press & Praise

Tyler Cowen, American economist, author, and Professor of Economics at George Mason University

Thoughtful and practical, Kelly makes the case for being a real learner and then shows how he's doing it with Prenda microschools.

Mark Rober, YouTuber, engineer, and inventor

I spend a lot of time trying to show people how curiosity and creativity make life more interesting. Kelly is doing the same thing with microschools, and this book explains the whole thing.

Alexis Ohanian, Founder of Seven Seven Six & Co-Founder and Former Executive Chairman of Reddit

Since my daughter was born, I've thought a lot about how to develop a mindset in her for lifelong learning—in this modern world. Learning how to learn is going to be something I know will make all the difference in her life, and I want every child to have that same opportunity. This book explains how that can happen and all the good it will bring to society.

Kelly Smith‘s childhood obsession with learning and building things led him to earn a master’s degree in nuclear fusion from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, start a nonprofit and two companies, and develop multiple products at technology companies.

While volunteering at an after-school code club at the library, he saw firsthand what happens when young people really want to learn, which led him to start a microschool around his kitchen table in January 2018. He went on to create Prenda (prenda.com), an education company that helps people run microschools. Kelly is a founder and CEO, a husband and father of four, and an enthusiastic learner.

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