Colorado PTA Reflections program

Reflections is a National PTA arts recognition program that helps students explore their own thoughts, feelings and ideas, develop artistic literacy, increase confidence, and find a love for learning that will help them become more successful not only in school, but in life.

Students in pre-K through grade 12 create original works of art in response to a theme. The theme for the 2021-2022 program year is “I Will Change the World By…” Students submit their completed works of art in one, or all, 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. Colorado State PTA finalists who receive an “Outstanding Interpretation” award will advance to the National PTA round. National PTA Reflections awards can be found here.
National PTA reflections

Please share your participation with National PTA by completing this registration form. Registering for Reflections helps National PTA show the wide reach of our beloved program and the importance of the arts!

Colorado PTA Reflections program

The goal of the PTA Arts in Education programming is to be a resource for PTA leaders in partnering with schools to provide opportunities for all students to explore and be involved in the arts.

The arts and the National PTA Reflections program support student success and serve as a valuable tool for building strong partnerships in your school community. When PTAs and schools work together to support arts education, they:

  1. Encourage all students—despite individual challenges—to explore ideas, express their individuality and support their peers in a positive way;
  2. Provide all students with an academic advantage by increasing student engagement and teacher effectiveness, which leads to increased school attendance rates and social connectedness among students; and
  3. Enhance family engagement by connecting families and schools to one another and to their communities.
National PTA accepts theme submission for students each year. The student who submits the winning entry receives $100 and his or her theme will be presented at the annual National PTA Convention. Repeat themes are not considered. The due date for submitting a theme search entry is typically November 1.
Past themes you can see here. Please visit PTA.org for more information!
StepInstructions/Directions/Resources
Step 1: Start the ArtsTake the Reflections Leader e-learning course to walk through a step-by-step process for engaging students, parents and educators in Reflections while learning about resources and tools provided by your State PTA and National PTA.

1) National PTA Reflections Rules
2) Contact your state PTA for a Local Leader’s Guide, state-specific dates, forms and additional information. Colorado PTA Reflections Dates can be found on our calendar.
3) Kick-off your program with National Arts in Education Week.
4) Consider the National Standards for Family-School Partnerships to ensure your Reflections program meets its intended potential.
Step 2: Organize and Plan Your ProgramRecruit a committee/team of volunteers to assist with program tasks. Also, recruit community arts professionals to review artwork and determine awards.

1) Customize your PTA Leader Checklist to organize tasks and schedule deadlines.
2) Build your PTA Arts Committee with this Volunteer Sign-Up Sheet.
3) Recruit community arts professionals to serve as judges.
Step 3: Promoting ReflectionsAnnounce your call for entries using PTA, school, and community communication channels. Be sure to include a deadline and drop off location as well as submission instructions.

1) Announce your Call for Entries using this themed flier.
2) Distribute the Student Entry Form, rules and instructions provided by your State PTA. For reference, see National PTA Official Rules.
3) Consider these Tips for Program Promotion.
4) Create your own promotions: Customize this Themed Poster (En Español) or have fun creating your own using these image files below.
*Reflections logo (JPEGEPSPNG)
*Category Images: Dance Choreography; Film Production; Literature; Music Composition; PhotographyVisual ArtsSpecial Artist
*Themed Images: Hand (PNG, EPS); Within Reach (PNG, EPS); Within Reach En español (PNG, EPS)
Step 4: Organize Artwork for Judging1) Collect submissions and organize by Arts Category and Grade Division. Qualify submissions according to program rules and address student ineligibility, as needed.
2) Prepare submissions for Judges’ review and provide Judging Guidelines and a Score Card to each judge. Judges will review artwork and judging information provided on the student’s entry form.
3) Collect judges scores and rank entries. Assign awards by grade division and arts category. Award levels may include Award of Excellence; Award of Merit; Honorable Mention; Participant.
Step 5: Celebrate and Recognize Your Participants1) Use the Reflections celebration guide to help plan your event.
2) Promote your event and celebrate students in local media using this media advisory and press release.
3) Present the Certificate of Recognition and other awards available at the PTA Store.
4) Learn about state and national awards for students and PTAs.
Step 6: Wrap Up1) Thank school staff, community partners, judges and parent volunteers using this Thank-you Letter for Volunteers.
2) Organize feedback using this Program Evaluation.
3) Submit student participation totals (Sept. 1 through Mar. 1, 2017).
Would you like to be part of the our Reflections Committee? We are looking for members with local, council, or state Reflections experience to join the committee! Find out what happens to your students’ art after you submit it and be a part of a program that serves all PTAs in Colorado state! The committee is most active between January and May; tasks take place at convention and much can be done from home. Contact office@copta.org.