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Louisa May Alcott Elementary

4213 228th Ave NE
Redmond, WA 98053
 (425) 936-2490





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)







The theme for the 2023-2024 program year is “I am Hopeful Because....” Students electronically 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.


Categories & Divisions


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. Please carefully read and follow the rules for your category!!   All artists must follow the rules of participation. Rules for each category are linked below. 


The six art areas are:


Choreography/Dance - originally choreographed dance composition presented in a video entry.


 Film/Video - 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 tempura, oil, acrylic, watercolor or T-shirt paints; computer-generate art; tw0-dimensional collage; printmaking; needlework; leather tooling NOTE:  LWPTSA Council is accepting ONLY 2D visual art


Special Artist Elementary Division - The National PTA 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 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).


Participation is organized by student age and grade levels. Student works are critiqued against others in the same grade division. The grade division for Alcott Elementary School is K-2nd & 3rd-5th. 


How to Participate 

  • Step 1 – CAREFULLY read the above rules and guidelines for how to enter your specific art area (under Categories and Divisions). Then click here to read Official Rules for all areas.  There are size requirements for visual art and photography and word counts for literacy.  Dance, music and film production have specific ways to save and submit your file. Read the rules and guidelines carefully!

 *Note: According to the guidance from Lake Washington PTSA Council, we do not accept 3-D artwork for the 2023-2024 Reflections program.

  • Step 2 – Electronically submit student's artwork to reflections@alcottptsa.org before the October 25th deadline. Include your child's name in the file submitted. Note: Please do not wait until deadline to submit your artwork. After deadline we do not accept any student’s art works for the 2023-24 Reflections Program. Your cooperation is highly appreciated!
  • Step 3 - Complete the Reflections Entry Form for your student.  Entry forms are due by October 25th. If your student is entering into more than one category, you need to submit an entry form for each category. 


Tips & Judging

Judging should be "blind", meaning the judge should not know the child's name only their grade level. Please make sure your child's name is not listed on art or written works, nor spoken in music videos or video submissions. Thank you! 


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


  • October 25th, 2023 – deadline for Alcott Elementary students to electronically submit entries to reflections@alcottptsa.org.
  • October- November – Alcott PTSA judging process.
  • November 20th, 2023 - Selected art pieces are submitted to the LWPTSA (district level) competition.
  • January 5th, 2024 - results of LWPTSA Reflection competition announced.
  • March 2024 – results of WSPTA Reflections competition (state level) announced.
  • May 2024 – results of National PTA Reflections competition announced.

Contact reflections@alcottptsa.org, we will be happy to help you.