Self-Directed Learning 101

Self-Directed Learning 101 was my pandemic project: a 12-week online microschool that I ran with 25 teenagers in Fall 2020. (Click here for the original description.)

Now it’s a 3-day in-person workshop for teenagers, which I’ve led in Los Angeles (2021) and Portland (2022).

To arrange a workshop for your community, get in touch.

Don’t miss my free audio workshop—How to Motivate Yourself as a Self-Directed Learner—which previews some of the content from SDL101.

The first in-person SDL101 workshop — Los Angeles, July 2021

Praise from in-person workshop participants

“This was genuinely the best teaching experience I’ve had in so long.” -Seneca, 13

“I really enjoyed Blake’s workshop. It was a fun and playful environment.” -Shiva, 15

“Great workshop for helping know whether to go to college, learning how to have conversations, and more!” -Sebastian, 13

“I really enjoyed getting to talk in-depth about how we learn as self-directed individuals. Blake is a great speaker and I’m glad I got to get to know him and the other students!” -Grant, 19

“For kids who are wondering about what they are planning on doing in the future as a homeschooler/self directed learner, I would highly recommend Blake!” -Stella, 15

“Blake is enthusiastic, inviting, and clearly has a passion for what he does.” -Gus

“Blake is an incredible presenter that makes the workshop surprisingly fun and is able to relate well to students. If you’re going to join him, be sure to be open to extreme social awkwardness- because it’s good social awkwardness, it adds to the experience, and it will ultimately be worth it.” -Brett, 19

“He’s enthusiastic and encouraging‚—it really locks in his lessons.” -Amada

“It’s more fun than you would think.” -Eli, 14

The Fall 2020 online microschool group – only slightly posed

Praise from Fall 2020 microschool participants

SDL101 was an experience that opened my eyes to the world of self-directed learning that I would not have discovered otherwise. Blake was a very positive, engaging facilitator who gave us material that we were interested in and could relate to. I absolutely loved every minute of the class and would apply for it again in a heartbeat!

-Chloe M.

Self-Directed Learning 101 provided a great community where I was encouraged to push myself out of my comfort zone and learn in non-traditional ways.

-Emma M.

SDL 101 was nothing like a class you would take in school, it was so much better. It taught me to put myself out there, to make connections, and to try things, even though I could fail. It taught me so much while also being fun and interesting.


Overall, my experience with SDL101 was awesome! I met some super cool people, had some fun and informative experiences, and did it all over Zoom! Blake and Margie were awesome and entertaining facilitators, and they kept me engaged and excited. 


SDL101 is a truly wonderful course that teaches you about a lot of interesting and useful topics. Whenever you head into a class, you don’t know what the next 90 minutes will be like. It could a great presentation that Blake made, or it could be some weird activity that he’s cooked up that pushes you out of your comfort zone. Whatever it is, I assure you that there will never be a dull moment in the class—in a good way, of course. You’ll meet some great people and make some great friends during this course, just like I have. If I could retake this course, I would. 10/10 recommended.

-Levi S.

SDL 101 was such a unique and awesome experience. Every class I was either nervous and laughing, or inspired and laughing. I started to think about my life and my future in a way I never had before; as a block of wood that I can carve to my liking. This class inspired me to take ahold of my goals and dreams and make them into reality, rather than just waiting and wishing. There were too many life lessons jam-packed into this class for me to have internalized them all yet, but I already think that pre-SDL Eden was pretty lame and unenlightened. I would take it again right now.

-Eden K.

Self-Directed Learning 101 is not only a class but a fun experience that sets young self directed learners up for success in every aspect of their lives. Blake Boles teaches with passion and has a talent for getting on his students’ level in order to make his lessons understandable and interesting to them. Blake’s topics are never dull and every class includes some joke or phrase to entertain students and insure that they will not forget his teachings. From betting money against their goals to facing rejection head on, Self-Directed Learning 101 students are pushed outside of their comfort zones weekly. Blake assigns homework that makes students sweat, but inevitably makes them stronger and more apt to try without the fear of failure. With Blake and their classmates behind them students are able to attack seemingly impossible goals by planning and executing them one step at a time. Blake shares lessons he has learned throughout his life no matter how personal they are and creates a safe space for students to be vulnerable with each other. In Self-Directed Learning 101 students learn to overcome their fears, work as a team, and be open and honest with themselves and others as they take their lives into their own hands and explore the many opportunities before them.

-Leah A.

Blake’s SDL 101 course was everything and more than I hoped it would be. He provided us with fun activities to implement what we learned and created a very lighthearted and safe environment for us. Along with my new friendships, I gained a lot of knowledge about myself and learned how to stop holding myself back. I would recommend this course to anyone who is unsure what path they want to take, is looking to make new friends, and is ready to work towards their full potential. Blake will push you outside of your comfort zone to achieve what you want for yourself in a productive and fun way.

-Gigi M.

The community is very supportive and the class is fun. Blake and Margie teach in a fun and effective format. I learned some great ways to better direct my own learning.

-Sean P.

I learned so much about how to take control of my own life and other skills that are not taught in school. I think really everyone should take this class.

-Eden S.

Take this class—you won’t regret it!

-Lorenzo G.