The Maine Adult Education Association (MAEA) is proud to present this Virtual State Conference. Join us from the comfort and safety of your home or workplace for a day of workshops and sessions hosted by expert presenters in their field on trending topics.



8:30 am – 10:00 am – Opening by Josh Farr, Shirley Wright, and Sharon Bonney  

Keynote speaker – 

What Does It Take to Serve Adult Learners Well – Especially in a Pandemic? by Terri Taylor, Lumina Foundation

  • Adult learners are increasingly viewed as a key population for increased educational attainment, but serving them well requires careful attention to the many policy, financial, and practical barriers that can get in their way. Terri Taylor of Lumina Foundation will share national trends about adult learners and highlight promising approaches to encouraging greater adult participation in educational programs. This will include a review of behavioral science principles for adult-focused outreach and key lessons from Lumina’s recent “Adult Promise” effort with 15 states and systems, including Maine, on how to identify, attract, and graduate more adult learners. She will close by reflecting on how the pandemic and recession affect how we reach and serve adult learners well.

10:00 am – 11:00 pm – Session 1

Closing the Digital Literacy Gap Northstar by Theresa Sladek – Sponsored by: CourseStorm

  • Digital literacy is a core skill for education, job advancement, and daily living, yet according to a 2017 Burning Glass report, 24% of Americans lack even basic computer skills.The recent pandemic has made it even clearer that we must provide training on these skills, however many ABE instructors don’t feel qualified or prepared enough to do so. Learn about Northstar’s easy to use assessments, curricula and self directed online learning for use with your adult learners in a remote or in-person setting and help to close the digital literacy gap!

Building Connection and Community in Online Classroom by Amy Poland (DOE) – Sponsored by: FAME

  • One of our strengths as adult educators is how we build relationships with our learners. But how do we do that in an online classroom? In this session, we will discuss tools and strategies for connecting authentically and genuinely with learners in synchronous and asynchronous contexts to build a community of learning. Please come prepared to share your ideas, too.

Developing Online Enrichment Classes Roundtable by Raye Leonard (Merrymeeting) and Lisa Robertson (York) – Sponsored by: Brainchild

  • Join us to share ideas and stories about developing enrichment courses for online platforms and redeveloping existing courses for online delivery.  We’ll share what works and what doesn’t and what have we learned.

Learning Through Brightspace by Monique Roy and Josh Farr – Sponsored by: New Readers Press

  • In this session, we will show attendees how the Brightspace learning management system functions as well as our experiences with it as a remote learning tool thus far.

Cultivate Outcomes with Real-Time Data Management by Teri Walker – Sponsored by: CommonTeri Services

  • The old adage goes “You can expect what you inspect.” That is easier said than done though if outcomes reporting happens after the dreaded end-of-quarter data entry marathon when there is little opportunity to effect change. This workshop will discuss strategies and introduce a variety of technology tools that facilitate efficient, rewarding outcomes for your students through real-time data management instead of after-the-fact data entry.

English Discoveries – The Complete ELL Solution by Jill Rosolek and Christina Piland – Sponsored by: English Discoveries

  • Discover how English Discoveries is The Complete English Language Learning Solution for your ESOL program. English Discoveries is a fully online, standards-based core curriculum that is perfect for your virtual, blended, or face-to-face ESOL classroom. With no downloads and cross-platform capabilities, your students can access their lessons on any device, including a smartphone. English Discoveries curriculum is comprehensive, rigorous, and fully aligned to NRS, CCRS, CASAS Competencies and CEFR standards. Engaging lessons deliver reading, listening, speaking, writing and grammar instruction and develop digital literacy throughout. Supplemental curricular resources plus lesson plans, handouts, workbooks, guided discussions, and a variety of assessment tools make sure teachers have everything they need to help keep students engaged and connected – all presented on a worry-free platform. English Discoveries is ready to help you deliver student success with a standards-based complete English language learning solution, whether it is traditional, blended, or virtual.

WordPress/Elementor for Beginners by Tekia Cox 

  • Do you want to learn how to access your WordPress website and make simple changes? This workshop will show you how to log in, upload images, upload your brochure, add information to pages, and make simple changes to that information.

11:00 am – 11:15 am – Break

11:15 am – 12:15 pm – Session 2

Google Tools by Monique Roy – Sponsored by: Brainchild

  • This workshop will be about sharing tips on how to use the Google Suite of tools to help you work more efficiently and remotely with your staff. This will include use of Google Doc, Slides, Sheets, Sites, Forms and Drive

Making the Most of Northstar by Theresa Sladek – Sponsored by: CEV Multimedia

  • Teaching and assessing digital literacy remotely is often a new and daunting experience for educators. Intended for those who have a Northstar Digital Literacy subscription, this workshop will focus on how to do remote proctoring, how to sign up learners to access self-directed online learning, and how to use the curriculum to teach remotely.

Serving Inmate Populations During COVID Roundtable by Dawn Wheeler, Judith Howard, and Tom Renckens – Sponsored by: Aztec Software

  • This is your chance to discuss and learn about the challenges and successes that others have had in serving the inmate populations in Maine during COVID 19.  Please join us and hear what we have done to make delivering instruction successful for our students and the difficulties that we encountered along the way.  We are excited to have a Maine Stars Data person join us as well.  We hope that you will be willing to share your thoughts and ideas; this will be an exchange of information.

Increasing Mindful Engagement in Online Learning by Emily McRobbie – Sponsored by: AdvanceNet presents WorkReady Mobile

  • How do we design online and virtual instruction in ways that best support student engagement and learning? Effective online instructional design influences how students receive information and navigate learning. Cognitive Load Theory suggests that how we design courses is directly related to how students receive and work with new information. This session explores best practices in online course design as well as methods to increase student engagement and learning.

The Sky’s the Limit:  Vocational Training ROI by Amy Catlin – Sponsored by: Academy of Medical Professions

  • Are you offering remote learning, and wondering if on site classes will ever return? How can you prepare for both options as you market your Vocational Training Program? We will provide you with tips and workhacks to understand the needs of your adult learners, how to bring those students to you, and how to keep your finger on the pulse of the needs of your community. Whether you are working with limited resources or an abundance, we are here to help you decide the best options for providing training at your location. Find out the 5 key questions that prospective learners have and how to answer them before they are asked. We will discuss ways to collect the testimonials you need from your current students to help your site rise to the top of the list for Vocational Training!

Providing College Planning Support Virtually by Maria MacDougal – Sponsored by: English Discoveries

  • The COVID-19 pandemic threw “the way we’ve always done it” right out the window. In-person support and sessions could no longer happen, so we had to rapidly adapt. In this session, you will learn how we leveraged Zoom, YouTube, social media, and our website to deliver important content, training, and support to both students and partners. We held almost all of our normal in-person events virtually. Hear about our strategies, successes and challenges, and why post-pandemic, we will continue to offer virtual options.

Introduction to Using Google Classroom by Zachary Melvin

  • This session will feature an overview of how to set up a Google classroom, post assignments, and monitor student work

12:15 pm – 12:45 pm – Sponsored Lunch Break Sessions

The HiSET Exam – FAQ 2020 Edition by Adam Springwater – Sponsored by: ETS HiSET+

  • Join us for a quick overview of the HiSET exam during the time of COVID-19. We’ll address frequently asked questions and provide a few HiSET exam basics.

Online Advising, A Far Reaching Practice by Dagmar Moravec, Amanda Cupps, Tiffany Peterson, and Bonnie Fortini

  • Do the needs of in-person and online adult students really differ? We will walk you through how we support students from first inquiry through the successful completion of their degree, certificate, and/or non-degree coursework. The partnerships we have developed and fostered across departments and campuses have allowed us to better meet the needs of students, and provide a higher level of accessibility to students regardless of modality. We will also offer you an opportunity to reflect on how our practices are used currently, or could be used, in your own advising practices. 

Supporting your Work with Immigrant Job Seekers by Sylvia Rusin, Thatien Munyaneza, and Stefanie Trice Gill – Sponsored by: IntWork

  • Learn about IntWork, a 100% employer-funded organization based in Maine, that connects immigrant professionals with career opportunities that match their skills and experience.

The Opportunity and Benefits of Hybrid Teaching by Jim Peacock – Sponsored by: Peak-Careers Consulting

  • We are never going back to what we had before COVID. We’ve learned that technology has, and will continue to have, a larger role in education and training. In the past, we often delivered workshops on specific topics for an hour. Now we have the ability to take that learning online and allow numerous learning styles to shine. This session will look at ways to deliver services and training in a hybrid model that will benefit everyone. We will look at tips and techniques to deliver training/education, both synchronously and asynchronously.

12:45 pm – 1:45 pm – Session 3

Using Google Sheets for Student Tracking by Caroline Mitchell – Sponsored by: FAME

  • This workshop will discuss using Google Sheets for collaborative student tracking of attendance, CASAS, graduates, and student success in Adult Education.

Customizing Forms in CourseStorm by Vivian Champagne (RSU54)  – Sponsored by: CourseStorm

  • In this workshop I will focus on CourseSTORM.  I am not an expert on CourseSTORM by any means, but I like to try new things.  I love when a new android phone comes out so I can update mine! When it came to our attention that our annual scholarship needed some funds, and we were shut down due to COVID19 – how were we going to fundraise this year?  Along came an idea of adding a customized form at online registration on the CourseSTORM webpage.  Thanks to help from Lisa Robertson of York Adult Education, I learned how to put it into action. Now is your turn to learn something new!

Getting the Most out of MAEA Marketing Toolkit by DJ Lavasseur (Windham & Raymond) – Sponsored by: AdvanceNet presents WorkReady Mobile

  • Knowing where to start with your marketing can be difficult. In this class, I will cover the Media Tool Kit that MAEA has to offer and ways to best promote your program. Bring your questions and examples of what has best worked for you.

Motivational Interviewing by Gail Minichiello, Beth Round, and Erica Mercier – Sponsored by: Peak Careers

  • This session is an introduction to how the University of Southern Maine (USM) has incorporated Motivational Interviewing (MI) concepts into our advising model. Learn basic MI principles and skills to integrate these into your advising practice with learners of all ages for both in-person and virtual environments.

Education to Change Lives – HS Equivalency Made Easy by Peggy Bernard – Sponsored by: Essential Education

  • A one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work for most adult learners. Because of this, teachers often struggle to create a learning plan that will fit various needs. Learn how our HiSET Academy®, pinpoints the missing skills and then creates a unique learning plan for each student, all while giving teachers the resources they need to make sure every student is successful.

Onboarding Instructors to Love Live Streaming by Lisa Robertson – Sponsored by: CEV Multimedia

  • In this new world of distance learning, how have programs gotten all their teachers mentally and emotionally prepared for this change? This summer, York Adult Education trained all their instructors (academic AND enrichment) using the “Skillful Teacher” model and focusing on the clarity in instruction standard so that the teachers were not only able to teach via teleconference, but were also excited to do so! This highly participatory session is for administration and instructors desiring to learn how to onboard individuals to love live-streaming.

Discover the Gems of BurlingtonEnglish by Brandi Cardwell – Sponsored by: Burlington English 

  • Get ready to be dazzled! Whether you’re new to Burlington or already a Burlington customer, this session will explore some instructional gems in the program to add sparkle to your class. Using Burlington’s new Core curriculum, Digital Readers, Using Your Computer, Prepare for CASAS, and more, we will model a variety of teaching strategies, delve into lessons from new angles, and share ideas that will keep your students engaged and excited as they improve their English language skills. Let your brilliance shine through with Burlington!

1:45 pm – 2:00 pm – Break

2:00 pm – 3:00 pm – Session 4

Taking Care of Yourself by Kayla Sikora – Sponsored by: Academy of Medical Professions

  • This workshop will highlight the importance of self-care during these difficult times. We will review ways to make your home-working environment comfortable and separate from your actual home life. We will talk about the importance of taking care of yourself so that you can be the best educator you can be. We will also review facts about trauma and the impact it has on educators.

Intermediate Word Press by Tekia Cox – Sponsored by: Peak Careers

  • Join this intermediate workshop to learn how to add links to your photos online, add pages including password protected pages, change your menu and add sub menus. This workshop will be interactive so come with your questions.

Essential Skills – QR Scan Technology by Peggy Bernard – Sponsored by: Essential Education

  • Discover how our ABE Essentials + Virtual Tutor workbooks combine two key instructional strategies needed for success: print and mobile learning. This 21-workbook series contains over 250 lessons that connect seamlessly to powerful mobile lessons, quizzes, and practice tests using QR code technology. A built-in Learning Management System (LMS) gives teachers the diagnostic data needed to determine readiness and pinpoint instruction for each student. Covers TABE 11/12 Math, Reading, and Language Levels E, M, D, and A. Covers CASAS Math GOALS Levels A/B and C/D. Covers CASAS Reading GOALS Levels B, C, and D.

iCEV-Tailor your CTE Curriculum to Fit the Needs of Your Learners by Lisa Barnett and Amy Lamb – Sponsored by: CEV Multimedia

  • The iCEV online curriculum platform allows learners to build and validate the knowledge and skills needed to transition to any form of post-secondary education, training or employment. Our multimedia, self-paced curriculum, as well as the industry certifications hosted on our testing platform, can be easily customized to fit any learner’s career circumstances, expectations, and instructional needs.

Digital Marketing for Educators by Camden Amoroso, Pulse Marketing – Sponsored by: New Readers Press

  • Learn more about effective digital strategies to drive more website visits, enrollment, and online engagement. This presentation will cover Paid Search, Social Media, Display and Video Advertising, among other digital topics.

Continuity of Services Roundtable by Lisa Robertson  – Sponsored by: English Discoveries

  • Since July, committees around the state have been working on creating continuity of services plans in case of another emergency closure. This year has been an unprecedented time of strategic planning in Maine Adult Education, bringing programs together as a system in order to more effectively serve our communities. Come find out about all the great work that is being planned in this informal sharing time. Bring your thoughts and ideas to contribute, or just sit and listen and learn.

3:00 pm – 3:15 pm – Break

3:15 pm – 3:45 pm – Closing/Prize Drawings