Reflections is a National PTA arts in education program. The program was started in 1969 and is the largest arts 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 that changes each year. The theme for the 2023-2024 year is I Am Hopeful Because … .

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 well-being. Get more information about the National PTA Reflections program.

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Categories | Divisions | Judging | Key Dates
Student Entry Forms | Resources for Local PTAs
Advancing Local Entries to Council
2022-2023 Winners | Past Winners

Reflections Categories

Lake Washington PTSA Council’s Reflections program welcomes all grades and abilities to explore and be involved in the arts. Young artists submit their original artwork to their respective local PTA or PTSA. A student may submit an entry in any of six categories:

Dance Choreography — Originally choreographed dance composition presented in a video entry
Film Production — Original works, with or without sound, of animation, narrative, documentary, experimental or multimedia
Literature — Original works of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, prose, drama, reflective essay, narrative or short story. Entries must be a single literary work; collections are not accepted.
Music Composition — Original musical composition, with or without words, presented in an audio recording
Photography — Color or black and white. Included techniques: Photogram, panorama, photomontage (one print of multiple original photos), single or multiple exposure, negative sandwich.
Visual Arts — Drawing; painting in tempera, oil, acrylic, watercolor or T-shirt paints; computer-generated art; two-dimensional collage; printmaking; needlework; leather tooling (see link for all accepted visual art forms). NOTE: LWPTSA Council is accepting ONLY 2D visual art.

Reflections Divisions

Participation is organized by student age and grade levels. Student works are critiqued against others in the same grade division. This allows recognition and judging of artworks by appropriate developmental age and skill levels. The grade divisions are:

Primary: Preschool – Grade 2
Intermediate: Grades 3 – 5
Middle School: Grades 6 – 8
High School: Grades 9 – 12

Additionally, the Special Artist division is an option for students with a disability as defined under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Generally, rules and guidelines within the special artists division are intended to ensure accessibility to the National PTA Reflections program and are modeled after the guidelines outlined in the ADA. Local PTA chairs should verify that artists meet the criteria before judging.


While the primary focus of Reflections is a celebration of creativity through positive recognition, finalists from local PTAs may advance to Council, then Council-level finalists will advance to Washington State PTA judging. State finalists who receive an “Outstanding Interpretation” award will advance to the National PTA round.

Entries are judged on creative ability and interpretation of the theme.

2023-2024 Key Dates

  • Monday, September 18, 2023 (7 to 8:30 pm) — LWPTSA Council’s Kick-Off Meeting on Zoom (register here)
  • Monday, November 20, 2023 — If your PTA/PTSA is not in good standing (defined by WSPTA) by this date, Council will not accept your entries. Only PTAs in good standing may participate in Reflections (SOA requirement). You may want to double-check with your president right away to confirm your PTA is in good standing.
    > Register your PTA to let National PTA know your PTA is participating in Reflections this year.
  • Monday, November 20, 2023 (Before 10 pm) — Local chairs must finish submission of advancing entries to Council no later than 10 pm on this date. Late entries will not be accepted. Please do not wait until the evening of the 20th to submit your entries.
  • Friday, December 1 to Friday, December 15, 2023 — Council judging process
  • Friday, January 5, 2024 — Target date to announce Council winners
  • Thursday, January 18, 2024 (Noon) — Council entries due to WSPTA (LWPTSA Council Reflections chair will upload all advancing entries.)
  • Friday, January 19, 2024 – Open house (finalist celebration)
  • March 2024 — Results of WSPTA Reflections competition announced
  • May 2024 — Results of National PTA Reflections competition announced

2023-2024 Student Entry Information

Program Resources for PTAs

Contact Us

2023-2024 LWPTSA Reflections Chair: Anuraga Gowtham — Email reflections (at)
Questions? Contact Council’s Reflections team at reflections {at} Local PTAs’ Reflections Chairs are also welcome to join our LWPTSA Council Reflections Chairs Facebook Group, where members can share ideas and ask questions.