It’s Conference Day!

Today is the day: The AOE 2014 Winter Online Conference!  We can’t wait to share over 20 presentations, 35 Handouts, 15 plus swag/giveaways, and a LOT of new ideas with over 1300 art teachers from around the globe today!


If you are registered for the conference and haven’t yet received your conference access information, first check your junk or spam folder, or if you have google, check your “Promotions” tab. We’ve been sending you stuff – sometimes it sneaks away!

If you are still having trouble, please email and we will get you all hooked up for the big day!

Check back here for conference recaps, and be sure to follow the conference on social media and Twitter using the hashtag #aoeconference.


Jessica and the AOE Team

Jessica Balsley

Jessica Balsley is the Founder and President at AOE. She is passionate about helping art teachers enhance their lives and careers through relevant professional development.


  • Jenna

    Where do I go to rewatch parts of the conference? get the handouts” and print my certificate?
    I enjoyed it all!

    • Jessica Balsley

      Jenna – you should have received the link and password to this page via email – if you didn’t, feel free to contact and they’ll hook you up.

      • Weni G

        Hi Jessica,
        I enjoyed the Jan. 25th workshops that I viewed as very engaging and clear- i.e. without the tech. glitzes. Thank you, the staff and your wonderful speakers for that. I was online for most of the 5 hr.+ workshop conference. I saw a bit more than half of all the presentations. Unluckily, I missed the rest, either some were repeating the intros several times, or just dropped into the “balck hole”. I wondered too what really happened.

        I didn’t receive the quick email after the Conference WS nor saw some info that your staff provided during the chat re access to handoouts or digital swags.

        A few requests & Qs:
        1) How and where do I access the rest of the workshops or the full WS presentations of the Winter conference?
        2) How do I access the 35 downloadable handouts?
        3) Are the digital swags, freebies and discount codes for everyone?
        4) How will you address to provide clear non-technical glitz WS to 1000-1300 online participants in the future? I am amazed and curious how it can be done? I used a MAC laptop with wide broadband and all your tech. reqs, yet I still got a lot of tech.glitz.

        A suggestion: For future online conferences-
        Will it be possible to space the WS sets into a time period of 1.5hrs to 2hrs each, with a 20-30 min. break in-between? That way our eyes, ears and brains can take a break too. :-) The recent Winter Confab-WS appeared to me as INFO-OVERLOAD.

        I’d love to listen, observe and concentrate, but a continuous feed is just too much. I think it’s different when one is physically present in a live conference. One can step out, move about, etc. I hope you could address this item in your future online WS-Confab which I hope to attend again.

        Many thanks and hope to hear from you soon.

  • sarah

    how do we find out who won the iPad?

    • Jessica Balsley

      Sarah, we sent a quick email after the conference with all of the winners listed! Let us know if you didn’t get it! ;)

      • Catherine Polcaro

        I didn’t get that email of the winners list either.

        • Jessica Balsley

          There’s password protected content, otherwise we’d post it here. Check your spam/junk folder, and if it isn’t there, contact and we’ll send you the email again! ;)

  • Sam Copthorne

    This was a wonderful opportunity! Unfortunately one that didn’t come without frustrations. I am hoping that you can give some insight as to what happened yesterday with the technical problems, so that we can feel confident signing up for future events and referring others to join us. I received a follow up email, but there were no details as to what happened. Before the conference, I ran all tests, and during the conference, I refrained from using the chat window except to ask the presenter a question, and refreshed the screen many times. The delays and not being able to see a complete presentation and you in-between sessions still remained a problem. I look forward to accessing the complete presentations over the next six months, but am disappointed that I did not have the opportunity to enjoy the conference live as was the intention. I am sure that many of us would like to find out what happened and/or what we can do on our ends to help make this a minimally frustrating enjoyable experience for all. I thank you in advance for your reply.

    • Jessica Balsley

      Sam, thank you so much for this thoughtful and articulate question. As you can probably imagine, WE have been particularly interested in finding the answer to this question, as well.

      Yesterday’s conference was a tremendous success, but what I can tell you at this point is that while most attendees had a very positive streaming experience, others experienced very legitimate lagging, pausing, bandwidth issues, etc.

      During the entire planning, prep, creation, and execution process leading up to this conference, we knew there was one element that we couldn’t do ourselves – the software component. The software necessary to compress video and stream it live to ~1,000 art teachers around the globe.

      For one reason or another, the presentation company experienced some temporary issues causing some attendees to have a less than optimal streaming experience.

      We designed the conference itself to satisfy the needs of several different attendees. A live component for more interaction, a non-live version for a higher-quality and a more-flexible viewing environment. In fact, roughly just less than half of our attendees planned to use the non-live viewing option, as it allows them to absorb the conference on their own terms, at their own time, at a higher quality, etc.

      This feature has an additional benefit of ensuring everyone could attend successfully regardless of their connection quality, issues with broadcast signal, etc. The intention was that in the unlikely event live-streaming became an problem, the conference experience could still be largely maintained.

      I’m rambling a bit here, but the short version is this… We’re incredibly proud of the conference we put on; we feel the content is unmatched in value and relevance to the art ed audience, including all the presentations, handouts, swag box, digital swag, PD hour certificate, etc. The amount of positive feedback we’ve received from the event in just the past 24 hours has been absolutely overwhelming! The concerns over technical issues however, are something we are aware of and taking every step to improve in the future.

      As a company that prides itself in delivering the best possible experience to art teachers, we have high standards to live up to, and we aim to meet or exceed those standards.

      Our promise to future attendees is this… we will continue to make every effort imaginable to ensure you have a quality experience with our online conferences. To the extent to which we can handle things ourselves to ensure this quality, we will. To the extent we can’t, we’ll find the best possible companies to work with and continue taking the extra steps necessary to ensure there is a quality backup plan and that you get the most possible value out of the conference as possible.

      Thank you again for this question, Sam. I’m so glad you thought the conference was a wonderful opportunity and that you’ll be enjoying all of the presentations at your leisure on the password-protected site! We will continue to move forward, and improve our offerings! Art Teachers deserve quality relevant professional development, and we’re going to to our absolute best to give it to them!

      Jessica and Derek Balsley
      Founders, The Art of Education

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