Here are some marketing strategies that I have done regarding Reflections.
- Friday Updates
- PTA Website
- School Website
- Morning Announcements
- Bulletin Boards
- Email blasts
- Host an informal Q & A session at the school
- Posters around school
- Commercials – Example
- Slide for Closed Circuit T.V.
- Marquee outside of school
It is always a challenge to get the students engaged in Reflections. Every year the number of students that participate change. The hardest theme for students to interpret was “Diversity Means…” Area 1 had the fewest number of entries this year.
Here are some questions that you might have regarding this program:
How do I get more students to participate?
- Talk to your art teachers. One year we had them let students use free time to create their visual arts entry.
- Reward your students. Last year we did a drawing for a gift card from Amazon. It was for all that entered.
- One year we did a doughnut party to the class that had the most entries.
- One year we gave $50 in supplies to the teacher that had the most entries. This encourages the teachers to promote the program
If I only have one medium to choose from, which one should I choose?
I would definitely go with morning announcements. In my experience, this is what the students in elementary school respond to.
How do I celebrate?
Try doing a Reflections Breakfast. Celebrate all the entrants and have the Principal hand out certificates and ribbons. It is done before school begins in the morning and in the Winter. Can also have a gallery set up for all the parents to come and see.
How do I recruit judges?
Consider swapping schools. Have Connections Teachers judge. Reach out to your community and have your local music school judge your entries. Have a Language Arts Teacher from your cluster schools judge Literature entries. Always ensure that the entries are blind when judging. More on this later.
How many judges do I need?
Typically, at the local level, you need at least two. Use your judgement, if both of your judges do not agree on a first and second place, then get a third judge.
I have all the entries, how do I get the judges to judge them?
Dropped them off at the schools/business and picked them up when they were done. Literature entries can be copied and gave to judges to rank at their leisure.
How do I know what entries will be disqualified?
Use your judgement. On Visual Arts entries, if you have seen this project done in school as part of the curriculum, it is not eligible. You can have it in the exhibition, but don’t judge it. We get a lot of entries of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Hello Kitty. Unfortunately, these are ineligible as well. This is copying someones original idea.
So is it Visual Arts or Photography?
You may get some entries that will be entered in the wrong category. Most notably, parents or students will enter in the Photography category, when in actuality it is really a Visual Arts entry. For it to be a Photography entry, it has to be on ONE continuous piece of paper with NO writing on it and no larger than 11 X 14. That means, no pasting of several photographs on a piece of cardboard. One photograph with writing on the MAT is considered Visual Arts. These are examples of Visual Arts entries:
I’m so overwhelmed by all of the Rules and Deadlines, help!
In a perfect world, you should have a co-chair. I know how hard it is to get one. This program is really time consuming for about two months. If you have two people, great. I recommend one organize the marketing aspect and the other the judging. After judging is over, both can go over entries and package them accordingly. Also, I am here to help. Please email, call, or text.