Successful PTA board members have a work style that values collaboration, communication and cooperation. In working together, they rely, too, on brainstorming as a problem-solving tool to identify and prioritize options in planning and organizing the PTA year.

As a collaborative effort, brainstorming encourages participants to tap into their creativity and supply many solutions to any given problem or task. Sharing ideas and participating in the decision-making process also builds buy in for the group’s decisions and plans for the PTA year.

How Tos – A good brainstorming session should last 15-20 minutes. To get started, divide into small groups with one person assigned as the recorder to capture the group’s suggestions.

Provide the groups with poster paper and marking pens to use in sharing and reporting their ideas.

Clearly identify the key purpose of the brainstorming activity by listing the task, problem or issue for discussion on the top of the paper for each group.

In addition, list the main goals and objectives for the unit for the coming year based on the Purposes of the PTA.


  • Everyone participates, including the president
  • Participants share ideas and how tos on the topic
  • Recorder lists all suggestions
  • Do not discuss or pre-judge ideas
  • Enjoy silences as It means everyone is thinking


To arrive at a consensus, take time to reorganize the list of ideas generated. Similar ideas should be grouped and put together.

Encourage the group to go over the list to identify shared priorities. Work together to consider:

  • Is the idea doable in terms of time and effort?
  • Do we have the resources and bandwidth?
  • Does the idea fit with the Purposes and basic policies of PTA?

As a next step, participants should indicate their top three choices. To tally the results, assign 3 points for 1st choice; 2 points for 2nd choice; 1 point for 3rd choice. And, add up the points for each category.

The idea with the most points becomes the group’s choice and shared priority to focus on moving forward.

Remember, reaching a goal (a desired outcome to be achieved) often requires the completion of several objectives and steps. (See: Develop an Action Plan)

Print Friendly, PDF & Email