Sunday, July 21, 2013

Guest Blogger---Erin "It's "OWL" Good in Kindergarten!

Hi all!  Erin from It’s “OWL” Good in Kindergarten here!  I have the honor of guest blogging for Nicki today, so hold on tight because it is going to be a fun ride.  

With the beginning of the school year coming faster than any of us want to admit, I have really started looking at what is the area I want to focus on the most in the first weeks of the new school year.   Last year, my owls’ attendance was scary bad.  I’m talking like a majority had ten or more absences over the course of the year and don’t even get me started on tardies.  With knowing what last year was like, I really want to nip this attendance thing in the bottom right on day one.  

I started brainstorming various ways that I can get the owls hooked into coming to school each and every day.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I know that the flu will come and go throughout the year and that sometimes parents and owls don’t get ready fast enough, but I need something that will motivate my owls to be at school.  

Last year, I made some attendance incentive charts to track coming to school but that seemed to fizzle out within a week.   I liked the idea of actually seeing how many times an owl came to school but I was doing all the work for those charts, which just was not personal enough.  To help improve on the incentive chart idea, I came up with some owl themed attendance punch cards.

Click on the picture to download your own owl themed attendance card freebie!

Starting on the first day of school, each owl will get one of the above punch cards and will write his or her name on it.  I am going to give a little freedom here and allow crayons, markers, colored pencils, or pencil for name writing in hopes that it will put that extra personal touch in there for the owls.  After names are on, I will walk around and quickly punch the cards for those that are there on that day.   Since I greet my owls in the hallway each morning, I’m going to just have the punch cards in hand.  As an owl passes me and enters the room, I will give him or her the punch card to take into the classroom.  I will then punch those cards once I get into the room.  For the first month of school, this will be a daily part of our morning.  

As far as how this will motivate the owls is a little tricky.  For the first week of school, I will reward for every hole punch.  It will most likely be a sucker from our sucker tree or a pencil from the pencil box.  On the start of the second week, we will sit down as a whole class and create a list of possible rewards and what would be a fair number of hole punches needed to earn the different rewards.  My hope is that doing this together will create a sense of ownership in all of this.

I hope that you were able to find this idea helpful and that you will start your school year off with some “owl”mazing attendance.

Please stop by my blog and take a peek at what happens in our classroom.

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