Leaders of Their Own Learning


About the book

Leaders of Their Own Learning is a blueprint to a revolutionary approach to student assessment. The eight key practices described in the book engage students in making academic progress, improve achievement, and involve families and communities in the life of the school. Harvard professor Jal Mehta describes Leaders of Their Own Learning as "both a practial how-to guide for how students, teachers, and school leaders can use student-led assessment, and a visionary argument for how we could invert the school reform pyramid and put students in charge of their own learning." 

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Watch the Leaders of Their Own Learning promotional video


What are readers saying about Leaders of Their Own Learning?

“Let [this book] serve as your guide to Expeditionary Learning, a concept so successful but so simple that you will wonder aloud why it isn’t universally available for those kids who would benefit from it most.”
—From the foreword by Mike Johnston, Colorado State Senator

“Leaders of Their Own Learning points the way toward a dramatically better system for assessing the skills that matter most and motivating our students to achieve mastery. This important book should be read by every parent, educator, and policy maker.”
—Tony Wagner, Harvard University; author, The Global Achievement Gap and Creating Innovators


Featured videos

Get a sneak peak at some of the videos that accompany Leaders of Their Own Learning. The 27 videos that are included with the book show key practices in action with students and teachers throughout the United States.

Austin's Butterfly: Building Excellence in Student Work - Models, Critique, and Descriptive Feedback

Students Share Work that Matters with an Authentic Audience - Celebrations of Learning

Kindergarten Student-Led Conference


Featured teacher tools

Download companion resources that support teachers and school leaders implementing student-engaged assessment practices in their own settings. 

Growth mindset

"Choice Words" by Douglas Fisher and Nancy Frey

Mindset Works Resources

School and classroom culture

Creating a Culture of Achievement

School Climate at Capital City

Habits of scholarship

Assessing Character and Student Agency in EL Schools

Building Character and Student Agency: A Different Approach

Assessment for learning and formative assessment

Assessment for Learning Strategies

Formative Assessment: A Review of the Relative Research

Writing strong learning targets

EL's ELA Common Core Learning Targets

EL's Math Common Core Learning Targets

Learning Targets Rubric

Instructional techniques

Increasing Student Learning through Simultaneous Engagement

Instructional Techniques and Resources: ELA CCSS Curriculum, Grades 3-8

Data inquiry

Central Beliefs about Data Inquiry Teams in EL Schools

Implementation Rubric: Using Data Inquiry to Improve Student Achievement


Creating a Rubric with Students

Rubric Basics

High-quality student work

Assignment to Assessment

Creating High Quality Work in Expeditionary Learning Schools: Multiple Levels of Support


Protocols: ELA CCSS Curriculum, Grades 3-8

Communicating with families and other stakeholders

Communication & Assessment at the Odyssey School

Parent Post-Conference Reflection Homework—ANSER Charter School

Templates and forms for student use

Tracking My Learning (Primary)

Working Folder Quick Reference Guide

Sample handbooks and guidelines from schools

Harborside Academy Students: 10th Grade Passages

The Fitchburg Arts Academy: Student Led Conference Teacher Manual 2009-10

Sample report cards

Progress Report Explanation

Sample assessment plans

Sample Standards-Target-Assessment (STA) Plan: Elementary

Sample Standards-Target-Assessment (STA) Plan: Secondary