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Reflections of young talent

By MARGO HORNER, The Mirror

There were fewer entries but plenty of talent this year at the annual Federal Way PTSA Council Reflections contest.

PTSA council members judged about 200 projects in visual arts, literature, photography, film/video and music composition categories this year. Entrants ranged from preschool to high school age.

Thirty-four winners were announced at an event Saturday at Saghalie Middle School. The winners’ entries will all go on to the state competition.

Reflections contests are held each year nationwide. The theme for this year’s contest was “I can make a difference by...”

In addition to creating art projects for the contest, many students participated in charity or community improvement projects to demonstrate how they could make a difference. Fundraisers, protecting trees, picking up litter and recycling were common themes.

“Everyone can make a difference by just picking up garbage and recycling and stuff,” said Jessica Lam, a fourth-grader at Nautilus Elementary who won second place in the music composition category for a song she wrote and sang.

Rachel Wilson, a second-grader at Star Lake Elementary, won first place in the visual arts category for her project detailing her community service. She went on an AIDS fundraiser walk, collected money from her neighbors for the Ronald McDonald House and cleaned up the playground at her school.

Paige Hallstrom, a fifth-grader at Panther Lake Elementary, received an honorable mention after submitting her short story about a family on a quest to reduce electricity and water use in their home, to quit littering and to feed families in Africa.

Students who participated in the Reflections contest this year learned more than how to master a paintbrush or a paragraph. They learned how to take an active stance to make a difference in the world and develop a greater appreciation for the environment.

“I wanted to do this because there are a ton of trees being cut down,” said Allyson Pu’u, a second-grader at Panther Lake Elementary. “America should make a place where trees can’t be cut down to save the environment.”

Contact Margo Horner: mhorner@fedwaymirror.com or (253) 925-5565.

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