All children deserve opportunities to explore and be involved in the arts.
The National PTA Reflections program is PTA’s cornerstone arts program. It was developed in 1969 by Colorado’s PTA President Mary Lou Anderson to encourage students to explore their talents and express themselves. Since then, the Reflections Program has inspired millions of students to reflect on a specific theme and create original artwork. Each year, students in Grades Pre-K through 12 are recognized for bringing the theme to life through dance choreography, film production, literature, music composition, photography and visual arts.
In 2012, the Special Artist Division emerged as an optional division for students whose physical, cognitive, or mental health challenges meet ADA guidelines. Please check with your state PTA office regarding state availability, guidelines and rules.
The arts—and the National PTA Reflections program, in particular—can be a valuable tool for building stronger partnerships in your school community. For more information about Reflections and Family-School Partnerships, click here.
- Blog: U.S. Department of Education Ceremony Honors Reflections Winners
- Blog: Reflections: A Gallery of 2011-2012 Student Art
- Reflections & Family Engagement: How to apply PTA's National Standards for Family-School Partnerships to your Reflections activities.
- National Award Winning Entries: View award winning artwork of the 2011-2012 “Diversity Means” Reflections program.
Believe, Dream, Inspire
The theme for PTA’s 2013–14 Reflections Program is Believe, Dream, Inspire. This theme was submitted through the Reflections Theme Search Contest by Julie Lampert of Waverly Park PTA, located in East Rockaway, New York.
“My Inspiration for the theme came from my experience in competitive sports. I hope that students across the country will strive to make their dreams become a reality,” Julie writes.
Each fall, thousands of students submit concepts for a future Reflections theme to their State PTA organizations. Your State PTA will select five themes to submit to the National PTA for consideration in the 2015–16 National PTA Reflections theme contest.
Complete an entry form and submit your concept according to your state PTA’s guidelines.
Mary Lou Anderson Arts Enhancement Grants
Matching grants for student-centered arts education programs.
At the end of the academic year, National PTA issues a request for proposals to PTA/PTSAs that want to take arts education to the next level. A limited number of matching grants of up to $1,000 are given in the Fall to PTA/PTSAs focused on student-centered programs to improve arts education, with special consideration given to programs that reach large numbers of at-risk students. Email email@example.com to let us know if you want to receive the request for proposals when it is distributed, as well as other important Reflections updates.
All applications must be submitted online by Friday, March 22, 2013 at 8:00 p.m. EST/5:00 p.m. PST. It is recommended that you review the grant narrative before you proceed with the application and formulate responses that can be cut and pasted into the application.
Go to http://Reflections.MLA2013.questionpro.com to complete an application.
Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (800) 307-4782.