I take poster board and make a geometric shape based on our number of lunch choices. This year we have 5 choices, thus a pentagon. I use Internet clipart sites to find pictures of a hot lunch, peanut butter sandwich, deli sandwich, salad and lunch from home. The pictures are then glued and labeled, one per side of the shape. (This makes it easier for me to see.) In the middle of the poster, I glue the caption "What's for lunch?" Every child has a clothespin with his or his name on it. As part of their morning routine, they make their lunch choice as soon as they come in the room. (This helps out greatly with children who have morning obligations like monitors, school store, news crew, etc.) The clothespins are hung on a rope beside the poster. At a quick glance, I can get my lunch count. Then I look at the rope to see whose clothespins are left, giving me my absentees.