Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Thursday - Jamie McMillin on Lessons from Legendary Learners

Join me Thursday, October 25th, for a one-hour live and interactive interview with Jamie McMillan, author of Legendary Learning: The Famous Homeschoolers' Guide to Self-Directed Excellence. This interview is part of my continued interest in how lessons from the homeschool world may increasingly inform discussions of traditional education. Jamie looks at what she calls "Legendary Learners[:] big thinkers, creators, leaders and achievers who earned success on their own terms."

"Read about famous homeschoolers such as: Andrew Carnegie, Agatha Christie, Louis Armstrong, Theodore Roosevelt, Thomas Edison, Robert Frost, John Muir, and Walt Whitman. Find out what these legends had in common, how they were raised and how they found success. Their fascinating stories will inspire you to think about homeschooling [and schooling?] in a whole new way - beyond curriculum, test scores and 'keeping up with the school kids.' You will discover how to: unleash your child's unique creative genius and power; cultivate passion and determination; allow your child to direct his or her own education; create an authentic atmosphere of learning; and live the habits of success." (From the publisher's description.)
"The great men and women of history had a certain kind of education. Find out how to duplicate it in Jamie McMillin's excellent book! A great read for parents, teachers, and self-educators." - Oliver and Rachel DeMille, authors of the "Thomas Jefferson Education" books 
"Jamie McMillin offers a well-researched and compelling look at what little-known factors bring forth the best in each child. This is a book every parent and educator should read." - Laura Grace Weldon, author of "Free Range Learning: How Homeschooling Changes Everything"
Date: Thursday, October 25th, 2012
Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at and a portable .mp3 recording is at
Mightybell Space: Resources, videos, links, and conversation about the interview can be found HERE.

About Jamie McMillin (from her website)

I have been homeschooling my three kids since 1996, trying nearly every method you can think of in that time. Fortunately, my kids are good sports.

Before that, I was in the U.S. Coast Guard, graduating from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in 1989, then spending the next five years working in the Coast Guard aids to navigation program in Texas and Alaska.

In all that time, I was (and have been) a voracious reader and addicted to research. I first heard of homeschooling back in 1993 from a “Harrowsmith Country Life” magazine featuring Rebecca Rupp. Enchanted, I read everything I could get my hands on about teaching my son at home, though he was only a baby at the time. Was it legal? Did it work? How do I do this? Fortunately, my husband was game and by the time our second son came along, we had decided that homeschooling was the way to go. Rebecca Rupp was my first mentor, although she never knew it. Her books were always within reach, and our early days were modeled after hers. We read lots of books, played games, constructed Viking ships, made salt-dough models of the Mediterranean, grew pole bean teepees and had lots of fun.

As the homeschooling movement grew and I connected with more families, I researched other styles of teaching: classical (The Well Trained Mind), unschooling, Charlotte Mason, unit studies, leadership (A Thomas Jefferson Education) and others. It was so hard to decide! They all sounded right. How to choose? It really came down to experimentation and finding what worked with each of my kids – and they were all very different. But I was still a tad worried, so that’s when I started reading biographies of people who had unconventional educations. I thought that if I could pick out any common threads among the childhoods of these successful people, it would give me some indication of which homeschooling method worked best.

Well, I got more than I bargained for. I learned so much I had to put it in a book! It turns out that there was indeed a common thread in the education of the people I studied, but that was just a small part of it. I also found similarities in how they were raised and the experiences they shared. It was fascinating!

Unfortunately, my homeschooling days are almost over. My oldest is in college and my second son is attending community college part-time. My youngest has decided to go to a local charter school for the arts this fall. But now is when I really have the experience and hindsight to know what worked, so that is why I decided to create this blog. I have a lot of stories about my kids and other people with unconventional educations to help put your homeschooling worries in perspective. Don’t worry – homeschooling is much more fun than you might think!

If you would like to contact me, please email JamieMcMillin (at) legendarylearningnow (dot) com    (please excuse the coded email address – I’m trying to stop the robots from finding me)


  1. Anonymous4:10 PM

    Jamie it is so nice to meet you! I love reading and learning about alternative education, homeschooling, and ed reform. My youngest homeschooler is now in 9th grade and trying a hybrid approach. I also experimented with various styles. So far, I am very happy with the results and the wonderful time we have spent together. I look forward to reading your blog. Please visit mine.

  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.


I hate having to moderate comments, but have to do so because of spam... :(