Active Attendance: Get Student Moving Right Away! [Interactive]

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In this episode Jessica shares her active attendance policy that gets students moving right away at the start of class and helps her complete attendance in an efficient manner so she never loses a minute of class time.

What is active attendance?

[0:35] So what is active attendance? Well, for me, that means that students students enter my setting, they’re going to check in on their own, and then they’re going to start walking around the gymnasium until our active warm-up time begins. In this way, I can have students take responsibility for getting checked in and reading what it is that we’re going to be doing for the day, helping get things set up, visiting with friends. Whatever it is, I know that I want my students to help me in charge of this process. This also helps me get attendance done faster and reported to the office so that I could get going with our learning.

How does it work?

[1:15] Here’s how I do this using pedometers, though you can also do this using heart rate monitors or some sort of other material that does the physical check-in process with the student. So what I have is I have a Quick ID storage holder that I bought from Gopher Sport, and it’s a pocket storage holder that I hang up on the wall using command strips. There are numbered pockets that pedometers hang in. I have a student list. Every parameter is assigned to a student, and as students enter my classroom, they get their assigned pedometer and then begin walking around the teaching facility and or helping with setup.

It’s important to get kids moving right away as they enter our classrooms. We don’t wanna waste a minute and when having to get attendance going and wanting to get students moving, I like to use an active attendance policy.

It's important to get kids moving right away as they enter our classrooms. We don't wanna waste a minute. When wanting to get students moving right away, I like to use an active attendance policy. #PhysEd Click To Tweet

Free yourself up to prepare for class

[1:53] So what’s easy for me is the students come in, I get to interact with them. I get to talk with them. I get to ask them for assistance or maybe I’m dealing with another issue from a previous class period or I’m having to get some locker room supervision done. Whatever it is, my active attendance policy takes care of itself, and the students are participants in this process and help take accountability for it.

[2:16] So once they’ve gotten their pedometer out of their pocket and they’ve reset it and they’re walking around the space, now they’re visiting and socializing, and they’re waiting for the warm-ups to begin. This gives them a chance to just kind of loosen up, to visit of it, to get ready, but it definitely works better than the students coming in to sit down or mess around.

Create a routine with your students

[2:37] Now I can look at the pocket chart that’s hanging on the wall and any of the parameters that are remaining after a certain set amount of time. Those are the students that are absent. So if number 4 is still in the pocket, that’s the student that I look at my roster and I mark them as absent. It’s pretty simple, and then I just report that to the office and the manner as which I’m required to do so and then I can begin class from there. I usually use music as that cue as to when they need to have that pedometer on and we establish a routine as to when they know they need to be out of the locker room and have that pedometer on and be walking around or helping with setup or getting started with stations right away.


[3:19] There’s really not a lot of drawbacks to this for me and the students learn the routine very quickly. If a student accidentally forgets to put theirs on, no big deal, I go find them in a hand it to him, and it’s a way to connect. Or if they accidentally take someone else’s no big deal. We just figure out the numbering system. Sometimes a kid puts theirs in the wrong pocket. It’s really okay. It’s a great opportunity for students to work through conflict and to be able to interact with each other in a positive manner.

[3:48] So there you have it. An active attendance policy using pedometers. Get your students moving right away, get them engaged and ready for class. Get your attendance reported to the office as quickly as possible and never lose a minute of instructional time. Thanks for listening, thanks for teaching, and I wish you all a wonderful day.

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