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Reflections Arts Program

National PTA Reflections Awards

Each year, students in Pre-K through Grade 12 are invited to create and submit original works of art in the areas of Dance Choreography, Film Production, Literature, Music Composition, Photography and Visual Arts. Based on State PTA rules and guidelines, these works of art may be submitted for state and national level awards and recognition opportunities.


National Level Reflections Awards


State PTAs are able, but not required, to submit 30 entries in total to the national level for review - one entry per arts category, per division. Of the national-level submissions, over 200 student Reflections participants will receive the following awards from National PTA:

  • Merit Award: Bronze Medal; Certificate of Merit; Work featured in the virtual exhibition
  • Award of Excellence: $200 Young Artist Scholarship; Silver Medal; Certificate of Excellence; Work featured in the virtual exhibition
  • Outstanding Interpretation Award: $800 Young Artist Scholarship; Gold Medal; Certificate of Outstanding Interpretation; Work featured in the virtual exhibition; $200 Prize for Local PTA Unit

National PTA celebrates the national Reflections winners and their artwork starting May 1 through the following calendar year. We feature our Outstanding Interpretation winners during National PTA’s Convention in June and select featured artists at the Reflections Student Arts Showcase in January. 

Selection Criteria

Student entries submitted to the national level go through two rounds of review by esteemed arts professionals across the country. During the evaluation process, 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?

Arts Categories and Divisions

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.

DanceFilmLiteratureMusicPhotographyVisual ArtsSpecial Education

Students participate in the appropriate division for their grade:
Primary (Pre-K - Grade 2); Intermediate (Grades 3-5); Middle School (Grades 6-8); High School (Grades 9-12); and Special Artist (All grades welcome).

Students who identify as having a disability and may receive services under IDEA or ADA: Section 504 may enter in the Special Artist Division or grade division most closely aligned to their functional abilities.*

Congratulations to the 2021-2022 I Will Change the World By… Reflections Winners


National PTA received over 900 student entries from 47 state PTA congresses in all the available arts categories. Of those submissions, we are thrilled to award over 200 student artists on the national level. Check out National PTA's press release announcement here

Congratulations to all of the 2021-2022 I Will Change the World By… National PTA Reflections winners and our 7 Outstanding Interpretation awardees!

The 2021-2022 Reflections theme I Will Change the World By... was submitted by Lydia Keel from Spanish Fork Junior High School PTSA in Utah.

2021-2022 Reflections Winner List

2023 Virtual Reflections
Student Arts Showcase

The annual Reflections Student Arts Showcase celebrates the national winners for National PTA's Reflections program. The 2023 Reflections Showcase featured a selection of artists and recognized all our national-level winning artists from the 2021-2022 National PTA Reflections program, I Will Change the World By....

The Showcase is available for viewing on National PTA's YouTube page.

Virtual Exhibit: 2021-2022 I Will Change the World By... Awardees

Check out our virtual exhibit from the 2021-2022 National PTA Reflections program, I Will Change the World By....

Dance Choreography 

Dance Choreography Awardees

Film Production 

Film Production Awardees


Literature Awardees

Music Composition 

Music Composition Awardees


Photography Awardees

Visual Arts 

Visual Arts Awardees

Annual Theme Search Contest


Students can participate in the Annual Theme Search Contest according to their State PTA Reflections Program guidelines. Through our annual search process, one winning student's theme will inspire the hundreds of thousands of student artists that participate in the Reflections program. The winning student will also receive a $100 award and national recognition. View the past 50+ years of winning themes.

2022-2023 Theme

The 2022-2023 Reflections theme is Show Your Voice! submitted by Jason Yevin, from Salk/Macarthur PTSA in New York.

2023-2024 Theme

Thanks to Alice Meko from Hampton Cove Elementary PTA in Alabama who submitted the 2023-2024 Reflections theme: I Am Hopeful Because...

2024-2025 Theme

Congratulations to the most recent winner of the Annual Theme Search Contest: Paige Opaska from Barbara Bush Middle School PTA in Texas! Paige’s submission, Accepting Imperfection, will be the 2024-2025 Reflections theme.


The 2022-2023
Reflections theme is 
Show Your Voice! 

R - Show Your Voice_InstagramAnimoto

Annual Mary Lou Anderson Reflections Arts Enhancement Grant   


Congratulations to the 2022 Mary Lou Anderson Reflections Arts Enhancement Grantees:

  • Jefferson PTA in Collinsville, Illinois
  • Jordan Elementary PTA in Whittier, California

To learn more about this opportunity, visit our ArtsEd Resources.

Previous National PTA Reflections Student Arts Celebrations

View this awards program from the 2021 National PTA Convention celebrating the Outstanding Interpretation Reflections winners for the 2020-2021 I Matter Because... Reflections program.

Check out the 2022 Virtual Reflections Student Arts Showcase which continues our celebration of the national winners from the 2020-2021 I Matter Because... Reflections program year. National PTA is also proud to provide the  2022 Virtual Reflections Student Arts Showcase in Spanish.

Watch the 2021-2022 I Will Change the World By... Virtual Outstanding Interpretation Reflections Winners Celebration which honors the top seven 2021-2022 Reflections winners and recognizes all of the national winners for their artistic achievements.

Encourage and celebrate student participation in arts education.

Find tools to run your Local PTA's Reflections program.

Apply for a grant and use our resources to advocate for arts education.