2023-2024 Reflections Program - "I am Hopeful Because..."

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Reflections is a National PTA art in education program. The program was started in 1969 and is the largest arts in education program of its kind in the United States. Students have the opportunity to use their creative talents by expressing themselves through their own original works created around a theme. Reflections is not “just an art contest.”  It helps kids take risks, be inspired, think creatively and be celebrated for their creativity and work. Studies have shown there is a positive relationship between the arts and wellbeing. Get more information about Reflections Art Program (wastatepta.org)

Students submit their completed works of art in one or more of the available arts categories: Dance Choreography, Film Production, Literature, Music Composition, Photography, Visual Arts. While the primary focus of Reflections is a celebration of creativity through positive recognition, finalists from local PTAs will move on to their council PTA (if applicable), then finalists from councils will move on to the state round. Washington State PTA finalists who receive an “Outstanding Interpretation” award will advance to the National PTA round.


See work for students who participated in the 2021-22 Reflections Program.  2021-2022 Reflections Program Gallery

How to Participate in the 2023-2024 Reflections Program

Click here to view the official program rules of participation. Be sure to read the all program and category rules carefully.

Electronically submit students’ art works together with completed & signed 2023-2024 Reflections Entry Form to reflections@evergreenptsa.org by Friday, October 27, 2023.  

*Note: Please do not wait until deadline to submit your art work. After deadline (October 27, 2023) we will not accept any student’s art works for the 2023-2024 Reflections program.

Reflections Categories and Divisions

Participation is organized by student age and grade levels. Student works are critiqued against others in the same grade division. The grade division for Evergreen Middle School students is Middle School: Grades 6 – 8

Young artists get involved through their local PTA or PTSA. A student may submit an entry in any of six arts areas. Only original works of art are accepted. The six art areas are:

Carefully read the rules for your category, linked above. 

Preparing/Verifying Entries

  1. “Content rules” must be followed or the entry is disqualified – if local PTA has questions or can’t determine if the content complies with the rules, you may be asked to submit the physical art piece (for example, if it looks like a painting may have 3-D elements that make it more than ½” thick, or a photograph that might be a collage vs. a photo montage).
  2. “Packaging Rules” (plastic sleeves and labeling of visual arts/photos) will only need to be followed if an entry is selected to go on to National PTA, and some “packaging rules” (multiple printed copies of literature entries, thumb drives for music/film/dance) may not be relevant at all this year!
  3. Please take good care of your artwork as it may be requested/required to be submitted for entries that are advancing! It will need to be in the same form it was in when the digital image was submitted in October!

Specifications to the 2023-24 Program

  • Visual Arts 3D art is not being accepted this year; only 2D entries are allowed. Examples of 3D: architecture carpentry, ceramics, jewelry, kites, dioramas, mobiles, etc.
  • Visual Arts – 2D: size and thickness
    •  Maximum size is 24” x 30” (includes matting).
    •  Thickness is ½” (includes matting) It is no longer 3/8”.
  • Photography: minimum and maximum sizes of photo
    • Minimum size is 3” x 5”
    • Maximum size is 8” x 10”
    • Photo + Mat is no bigger than 11” x 14”

If entries advance to National PTA, the physical artwork will be collected and must meet these criteria!

Music, Film and Dance: Rules still have CDs and DVDs as an option for submitting entry. It is hard to find CD and DVD players these days. So, USBs are preferred. 

Tips and Judging

Judges will consider the following criteria:
    1. Interpretation: How closely the piece relates to the theme, based on the work itself and the artist statement.
    2. Creativity: How creative and original the piece is in its conception of the theme and its presentation.
    3. Technique: The level of skill demonstrated in the basic principles/techniques of the arts area.

Judges strongly consider the interpretation of the Reflections theme during the evaluation process. It is suggested that students give their submissions a title that stands out and describes how the piece relates to the student’s personal interpretation of the theme. The following guiding questions can be useful when developing a title and artist statement: 

    • How does your work relate to the theme?
    • What is your personal connection to the theme?
    • What did you use to create your work (e.g., supplies, technology, instrumentation, props, etc.)?
    • What/who was your inspiration?

Key Dates

    • Friday, October 27th, 2023 – deadline for Evergreen Middle School students to electronically submit entries to reflections@evergreenptsa.org
    • October 30,2023 - November 15,2023 – Evergreen PTSA judging process
    • TBD – Date for Evergreen Middle School winner's announcement
    • January 5, 2024 – target date for Lake Washington PTSA Council winner's announcement
    • March 2024– results of WSPTA Reflections competition announced
    • May 2024 – results of National PTA Reflections competition announced



Washington State PTA 2022-2023 SILVER Membership Growth Award Recipient 2022-2023 Washington State PTA 100% Staff Membership Award Recipient

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