I Matter Because...


I Matter Because

Reflections Program 2019-2020 Winners Announced!
Give students confidence in their abilities to explore ideas and learn through the arts! Enroll your school in the 2020-2021 national arts awards program starting July 1. Each year hundreds of thousands of students in preschool through grade 12 create and submit original works in the areas of dance choreography, film production, literature, music composition, photography and visual arts. Students may participate in the national awards program through their school’s PTA. The 2020-2021 theme “I Matter Because” video call for entries:

Five Reasons To Run The Reflections Program


  1. Students who participate get an opportunity to explore the arts and culture, develop creative thinking and problem-solving skills and recognize themselves as artists and become more interested in the ideas and works of others.
  2. The Reflections Program is run by parent volunteers; therefore providing another opportunity to involve parents in their children’s education.
  3. Participating in the Reflections Program gives students a chance to experiment in six art categories: literature, musical composition, photography, visual arts (including such forms as drawing, painting, printmaking, and collage), dance choreography, and film production.
  4. When children express themselves through words, pictures, music, and other art media they grow intellectually – they learn to analyze their thoughts and feelings. (Students may not use trademarked images, i.e. Marvel and DC comics.)
  5. The Reflections Program helps parents recognize, support, and enhance the continuous self-discovery process of their children.

2020-2021 Local Leader’s Guide


The English .Docx or .PDF or Spanish .Docx or .PDF provides an overview of the steps necessary to host a program at your school. You’ll also find helpful tools to recruit and train volunteers as well as plan educational activities and family celebrations.

Annual Theme Search Contest


Students can participate in the annual Theme Search Contest according to their State PTA Reflections Program guidelines. Every year, one winning student's theme is selected by a team of National PTA volunteers. The winning student is awarded $100, national recognition and the honor of inspiring hundreds of thousands of artists across the nation as they participate in the Reflections program.

Thanks to Rylee S., from Burney Elementary School PTA in Burney, California. The 2020-2021 Reflections theme will be "I Matter Because..."

And congratulations to the winner of the 2021-2022 annual Theme Search Contest, Lydia K., from Spanish Fork Junior High School PTSA in Utah. Thanks to Lydia's submission, the 2021-2022 Reflections theme will be "I Will Change the World By..."

Students can participate in the annual Theme Search Contest according to State PTA Reflections Program guidelines. One winning theme will be selected in 2020 and used as the Reflections program theme during the 2021-2022 school year. Please complete this form by November 01, 2020.

Title and Artist Statement


Judges will consider your title and artist statement to learn more about your original work and creative interpretation of the theme. Give your work a title that stands out and describe how your work relates to your own personal interpretation of the theme.
Use these guiding questions to help you write an 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?

Judging Criteria


Judges look for personal interpretations on the program theme that best exemplify creativity and technical skill.

  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.

Scholarships & Prizes


National level awards include the following:

  • Merit Award: Bronze Medal; Certificate of Merit; Work featured in the traveling exhibition.
  • Award of Excellence: $200 Young Artist Scholarship; Silver Medal; Certificate of Excellence; Work featured in the traveling exhibition.
  • Outstanding Interpretation Award: An expense-paid trip for awardee and chaperone to showcase work on stage at the National PTA Awards and Reflections Celebration; $800 Young Artist Scholarship; Gold Medal; Certificate of Outstanding Interpretation; Work featured in the traveling exhibition; $200 Prize for Local PTA Unit.

National Winners


2020 National Winners

The 2019-2020 National Winners have been announced!
The 2020-2021 National Winners will be announced May 1, 2021.