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Shining Bright: Best Classroom and School Award Ideas for Elementary Students

It’s true that the school year is just starting but it’s never too early to start thinking about how you’re going to approach the end of the year awards. While you could give them the basic slip of paper certificate, wouldn’t it be more fun to brighten things up a little?

You want to give each student a school award that they will love and that will give them a sense of accomplishment. This means you’ve got to pick out the right reward categories as well.

To help you start preparing for a meaningful end of the year ceremony, check out these school award category and design ideas.

1. Perfect Attendance 

Perfect attendance is a no brainer category to include. It's one of the most popular awards to give out because every student has a chance at it. They don't have to excel at grades or anything like that. All they have to do is show up. 

On top of giving out awards at the end of the year, some schools provide other incentives to get kids to come to class. They'll throw parties and do field trips at the end of every year for those with perfect attendance. 

2. Good Character Awards

To encourage students to be at their best all year round, some schools do good character awards. This is another one that a child can get without having to have done amazing grade-wise so everyone has a chance to win. You can give out rewards for 

  • Best Manners
  • Most Respectable
  • Best Friend 
  • Most Caring
  • Most Trustworthy
  • Most Responsible 
  • All Around Good Citizen 

There are more than this that you could give out. Give an award for as many or as little traits that you want. 

3. Behavior Awards 

Not to be confused with character awards, you could also give out rewards for outstanding behavior. Character rewards typically center around the 5 pillars these are kindness, honesty, integrity, responsibility, and respect. Behavior is a little less broad. 

Students who are natural leaders are the ones who should be signaled out for behavior ones. They make an effort to help others without being asked and act as a guide for their fellow classmates. 

4. Curricular Awards

Students do attend school to learn so it's important to recognize those who strive to make the best grades. These usually fall into the same categories of all A, all B, and AB honor roll. You can still give these but you can tack on a few more creative options as well. 

You could do a most improved student award to recognize someone who tried their best to pull their grades up. A star reader award is a good option for the student who read the most books that year. 

You could give fun awards for students who did the best in each subject (Math, Science, English, and History). The sky is the limit. 

5. Extracurricular Awards 

On top of rewarding curricular activities, you should award extracurricular ones as well. These are for students who show their potential in activities such as sports.

It depends on what kind of activities you have at your school but either way, they should go to the students who go above and beyond class for their school. 

6. Fun, Quirky Awards

Awards don't have to always be serious business. You can give some out for fun instead. 

You can do whatever you want. A few popular ones are best smile, classroom comedian, fashionista, quietest student, computer whiz, and aspiring artist to name a few. 

7. Jazz Up the Design a Little 

Now that you know what kind of awards you can do, let's talk about how you can dress them up. You can add your school's mascot for a more custom look or fun clip-art related to your awards purpose.

8. Take a Tally

Make a list of possible awards that can be given out and then have a day where you pass around a paper and let the kids vote on who deserves what award. Count up the names and then go from there. It's a fun way to get the kids involved with the awards day ceremony. 

School Award Ideas For the End of School Year

Even though the school year just started there is nothing wrong with thinking about how you're going to run your awards ceremony now. Use these school award ideas to figure out the categories you want to make awards for and how you want to design them. Give your students an award that they'll be proud to show off to their parents. 

For a few special awards, you may have to get a bit more creative than a piece of paper. Some students deserve a whole plaque. Go here to browse through our gorgeous options