Weekly, I elect a teacher assistant who sits at a special computer desk that has office supplies available. This student has a small spiral notebook entitled 'Homework Log' in which assignments for the day are written. I teach block classes so the assistant in my first class writes the assignments in the homework log for all my classes.
I check for accuracy. My student assistant picks up all the handouts from the empty desks, places names on the top handouts, and paperclips them together. I keep three stacked trays on the computer desk that are labeled by my blocked classes.
My assistant stores the handouts in the appropriate box. If the same student is absent the next day, the assistant attaches any handouts to the back of the stack from the previous day. I keep a class list posted by the computer desk so the student has easy access to the proper spelling of names. I don't ever have to worry about students who are absent.
I just need to explain the missed assignments.