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Pin with title "End of Year Awards Meets People's Choice Awards" over three screenshots of different student awards

End of Year Awards Meets People’s Choice Awards

Ever seen People’s Choice Awards? This twist on end of year awards is just like that. The people – your upper elementary students – get to nominate each other for end of year awards. This is a fun way to celebrate the class community you’ve built all year and to get students excited about student awards.

Read this post for a step-by-step overview of how to roll out student choice awards in your classroom.

Incorporating Student Choice in End of Year Awards

You might be thinking, I’ve always done awards a certain way, why change it now? By incorporating student choice, your upper elementary students will be stoked to choose awards for their peers and also to get an award that their peers choose.

It’s a big confidence booster! Students in grades 4-6 are usually highly influenced by their peers. Because of this, they will be extra excited to receive an award for something positive that their classmates see in them.

Pin with title "End of Year Awards Meets People's Choice Awards" over three screenshots of different student awards

How to Host Student Choice Awards

If you’re convinced that you want to try having students choose your end of year awards, then read on for a step-by-step overview of how to do it.

Decide on Awards

First, you’ll decide on the actual awards that students can nominate each other for. Having more award options than the number of students in your class is helpful. This way, students can put thought into which award truly fits each student, rather than having a few students left over who get nominated for an award by default. This ensures that each student receives an award that truly represents them.

Check out this end of year awards resource which includes 36 award ideas. There are also editable awards so you can add your own ideas. Consider adding a few awards that students come up with. 

Tip: Keep your awards positive so that there are no hurt feelings. To prevent potential problems, avoid humorous awards that may be misconstrued by students or students’ parents.

Share Award Choices and Nomination Process

Have a class meeting where you share the award choices and discuss how the nomination process will work. Go over what each award means before students begin nominations. 

For example, if you have an award for determination, make sure that students understand what the award means so they make accurate nominations. This is a great time to answer any questions so the nomination process goes smoothly.

Student Nominations

Once your end of year awards are finalized, it’s time for students to nominate their peers. It can be tricky for students to keep their nominations a secret. They get excited and want to chat about it, but the more nominations are kept secret, the more that students will be shocked and excited when they get their awards during the year-end award ceremony.

To help nominations go smoothly, have a class list for each student. They will use the class list to keep track of nominations to make sure that every classmate is nominated for an award. 

Students can make nominations by writing the award names next to each of their classmates’ names on their class list. To make it even easier for you to tabulate the nominations, have students complete a Google Form. In this student awards resource, a Google Form is included for student nominations. All you have to do is see which names were nominated the most for each award, and you can move on to the next step.

Lastly, feel free to nominate students for awards, too! Students love to know that their teacher will also be doing nominations.

Review Nominations

Once students have made their nominations, it’s time to tabulate them. Have a class list handy so you can make a final record of which student is receiving which award. In the beginning, it’s pretty easy. There is usually a clear indication of some students receiving certain awards based on the number of times they have been nominated. 

For other awards, it might be more unclear. If there is a tie in nominations, use your best teacher judgement and decide which student best fits each award.

Finalize Awards

Once all students have been assigned an award, print them out and fill out the end of year awards. Keep them in a secret place until it’s time for the award ceremony. 

I once left a stack of awards out on my desk because I was filling them out when my students were out for recess. One of the awards was seen by a student when they came in. Teacher fail.

Award Ceremony

The last step is to host your class award ceremony. This can be as involved or as simple as you’d like. At our school, we have regular assemblies where students receive awards. For that reason, I choose to keep it simple with the end of year awards ceremony. If you’re up for it, you could decorate, have students dress up, and even invite students’ parents in.

To Review

Try having students nominate each other for your end of year awards. It’s a wonderful time to celebrate the classroom community you’ve built all year by showing students that they all have made a positive contribution to the classroom. 

The steps go as follows:

  1. Decide on end of year awards
  2. Class meeting sharing the award choice and nomination process
  3. Student nominations
  4. Tabulate nominations
  5. Print and fill out student awards
  6. Host an end of year award ceremony

End of Year Awards

Want the end of year awards resource that includes everything you need to have students nominate each other for student awards? Grab this end of the year awards resource which includes 36 editable student awards, a student nomination Google Form, an editable class list, and more.

More End of The Schol Year Ideas

A Modern Summer Bulletin Board for Upper Elementary

Everything You Need to Host a Year End Class Talent Show

10 Student End of Year Gifts They Are Sure to Love

Amber Evancio

Amber Evancio

I'm Amber Evancio and I currently teach grade four in Northern Canada. I'm passionate about helping teachers lead their classes with efficiency and love.


I’m Amber Evancio and I currently teach grade four in Northern Canada. I’m passionate about helping teachers lead their classes with efficiency and love.

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