March 29, 2014

Taking a Look Back...

Okay everyone... I decided to look at my first EVER product on TpT to make sure everything looked like I wanted it to in comparison to my other products. I know I have gotten better and more skilled at designing my products so I wanted to update it.



I mean, really....

It needed like a HUMONGOUS makeover.

So ladies and gentlemen, I present to you, the before and after photos of The Preamble Poster!

Thoughts? I think it looks much better and the actual product itself looks much better if you were to download it. Take a look and leave me some feedback! I love comments!

March 28, 2014

Five For Friday [March 28]

Is it strange that I can get a Five for Friday post this early?? I think so! But Spring Break makes wonderful things happen. ;P

First of all, this is my last day of Spring Break! I had huge plans to get a whole lot done, but it didn't really pan out. I still feel incredibly behind. My mistake was that I planned too much and didn't account for my need to actually take a break. I still have the weekend to get my act together and start on Monday fresh.

This is pretty much how I feel.

Although I didn't get as much done as I had originally hoped, I will say that I got to spend more time with my husband when he got home from work. If you've read some of my previous posts about him, he is a YouTuber and HUGE gamer. I had posted a couple of times about a few videos I am in on YouTube and I feel so flattered that I actually have a few fans! Hehe.

We have some exciting news! Ryan was contacted by a viewer of his YouTube channel and his Twitch stream and is making... wait for it.... shirts. They are making.... shirts! Brutall (his gaming internet personality) shirts! How crazy is that??

Here's the video. I'm in it!

And then I did another video! My series on his channel is about how to incorporate a time consuming hobby into a relationship. This one is about how its okay to branch out on your own and to not just do something together for the sake of doing something together. It makes more sense in the video, so check it out and subscribe to his channel for more.


So even though I just got done saying that I didn't get much done this week, I did manage to get a new product finished! I seriously feel like I've been working on this things for MONTHS. It took much longer than expected but I'm happy with the results!

These are "Prop Stories" which I use a lot in my theater classes for the younger groups. Essentially I read, and the kids wait to hear their "name" and hold up a prop. It is AMAZING for listening skills. I mean, you could hear a pin drop while they wait for their part to come up. I had also created shorter versions for small groups which they of course love because one student reads and the others hold up their prop at the right time. They will re-read and re-read and re-read over and over again so they can all take turns at each part. It has been very successful for me so I hope you can say the same.

Here are some shots of the product and click HERE for a FREEBIE of it exclusive to my blog readers!!!

Click any of the images above to go to the full download or click HERE.

If you haven't heard, I have a linky going on! Next week is National Week of the Ocean so link up your Under the Sea posts and products. HERE's the link!

I LOVE Under the Sea stuff!

My product in the link is another Reader's Theater (so now you know my favorite things...).

One nice thing about being off the last week is I was able to cook lots of good recipes for my husband and myself. We are terrible about fast food, so it was nice to take a step back and make a few home cooked meals. We are trying to get back on track and I think we did a great job this week towards that.

Check out what we've eaten this week by clicking the links. The links direct you to some of my absolute FAVORITE recipe blogs!

March 27, 2014

Spring Cleaning Sale!

I heard about some TpT sellers throwing a Spring Cleaning Sale and I just HAD to join in! So stock up this weekend on the things you need to get you through the rest of the year and maybe start getting prepped for next year!

Want to see who else is joining in?
The original link-up can be found at Georgia Grown Kiddos!

Georgia Grown Kiddo's

Happy shopping!

National Ocean Week Linky!

Hello readers! I hope everyone is enjoying their Spring Break (or if you are like me, a BUSY CATCH-UP Spring Break...).

If you weren't aware, next week is National Ocean Week! I am a sucker for things under the sea themed. I love colorful fish and water and boats, oh gosh, I could go on and on! So, in anticipation of next week's fun, I've decided to host my VERY FIRST linky! I am super excited!

Here's the deal:
Link up your under the sea/ocean posts. They can be freebies. They can be classroom photos or ideas. They can be blog posts of your plans for next week. They can be links to your paid products on TpT. As long as they are Under the Sea or Ocean related, I'll take it. Let's inspire each other with great ideas for this upcoming week!

Here is my Under the Sea themed TpT creation for ya'll. Mine is a reader's theater with short scenes and skits that can be used for whole group fun or as reader's theater centers. I just love them!!! My original blog post about them can be found HERE and the download is HERE or just click the pictures below.


Thanks for linking up! Leave me some comments below and be sure to follow my blog so you can more easily access your linkup.

March 22, 2014

Scenes and Skits

Hello all!

As you know if you've kept up with my blog, I not only work in a Kindergarten classroom, but I have been a theater instructor for about 10 years now. I have taught at modeling and acting agencies in central Florida as well as various community theaters and dance studios. I LOVE this part of my life. I was always involved in theater at a young age. My mother worked as the Music Director at one of the biggest community theaters in the southeast so I basically grew up there! It has helped me come out of my once shy shell and gain confidence. It has also led me to my passion in education.

I currently work in the Education Department at the Ocala Civic Theater. Click their logo above to see what we are up to!

The downside to children's theater is when you have a class of a set number of children it is nearly IMPOSSIBLE to find scripts of scenes, skits, monologues, or entire plays to fit the class you have. Now if you are doing a play and you can audition children and pick kids from a pool of auditions, that's entirely different. More often than not, you have a set number of boys and girls ranging in age and skills.

I normally wind up writing my own material. I have a plethora of scripts ranging in length from half page monologues to six page skits. I also won a play writing competition in my Junior year of high school and still have that play laying around somewhere.

I recently taught a class called "Loud and Proud" all about vocal techniques, projection, diction, rate, and memorization of lines. I decided I wanted scenes... but they were ages 4 to 7, I had 9 of them, 6 girls, and 3 boys. I didn't even bother trying to find a script. Most of them couldn't read anyway...

I went with a gender neutral theme that is always popular with the kiddos: Under the Sea. I wrote 4 total scenes, but only wound up using 3.

Parents were asking me about the scripts and I told them that I wrote them. They loved them, so I decided to share them with the world! Here's my newest product:

Click the images to go to the download.

These skits really were a lot of fun and all the kids really liked them. The vocabulary was easy to understand even for the 4 year olds and they were entertaining for the other kids to watch their peers perform and practice. I typically have young students repeat lines after me in the beginning if they struggle reading, but for older students who are good readers, this can be used as a reader's theater center in the general classroom. I plan on trying it out on my top readers in guided reading in my Kindergarten class and will get back to you on that!

Let me know how you like these little skits! I love and appreciate all comments and feedback. :)

Sweet Baby Daisy

I've been asked why my blog is called Daisy Designs, so I've decided to post a "history of..." type post to answer that question and hopefully give you some SUPER CUTENESS to enjoy on your weekend.

Well, my name is Amanda, not Daisy. My sweet dog's name is Daisy! She is in my TpT logo photo as well as my Google+ profile picture. I'm working on a better button, so I don't currently have one but if I did, she'd be in that, too!

This is a fairly recent picture of Daisy. She is a Chihuahua through and through. She has an annoying bark and uses it all the time at anything. I swear, she barks at silence sometimes. I love it and I hate it. ;)

This is Daisy the day we got her!

My mother and I got Daisy for my husband as a birthday gift in February of 2011.
My husband (at the time, boyfriend) had just had life-altering surgery. He was diagnosed with a rare heart condition called Brugada Syndrome. By clicking the link, you can read more about it.
He was sad and down, out of work for a while, and lonely while I worked long hours. We had also just gotten rid of a dog we were taking care of and I knew Ryan wanted a puppy. He was a lover of big dogs, but I just couldn't get a big dog. We were living in a "mother-in-law" guest house type place which was only about 200 square feet, so a little dog was pushing it. But we went for it! My mom had the idea and we found a lady who was selling chihuahua puppies for $100! We took Ryan to go pick one out and he instantly chose this little lady and named her Daisy.

Look how tiny!!! That's my husband's foot, so you can see the size comparison.

We got Daisy when she was 5 months old. She was born in August 2010 and is currently 3 and a half years old! I can't believe it.

Here are some more baby pictures.

In the upper right corner, that's my friend Adam showing us that he could in fact eat Daisy in 1 bite because she's so small!

The other puppy in the bottom pictures is our other puppy, Pudgy! We got her in June of 2011 when she was 2 months old. We are puppy addicts! She is our chunky monkey and the snuggliest dog in the world. She is about twice that size now. I call her a "Monster Chihuahua" because she's so big! Daisy hasn't grown much since we got her. She's still only about 5 pounds, while Pudgy weighs in a whopping 12!

I love that sleeping picture of Daisy and the one of her all soapy in the bath! Both my dogs HATE water.
Pudgy had to have surgery on her leg in 2012 when she was still just a little baby! That's her with her bandages on in the bottom left picture. Try keeping a puppy still. Just try.

So there ya have it! Now you can see who I named my TpT store and blog after. I toyed around with naming is Pudgy Products after my other chihuahua, but it sounded like a weight loss program, so I went with naming it after my sweet baby Daisy!


March 21, 2014

My First Giveaway Donation!

This weekend Kristen Schroeder over at Schroeder's Stars is celebrating her 200 follower milestone with a giveaway! I donated a product to her giveaway and there are over 50 (FIFTY!!!!!!!) donated products from other sellers! That means that all you have to do is follow these people who donated a product on TpT and you are entered to win all the products from your grade level's bundle! My product donated is usually $8, so it is definitely worth entering!

My product is geared towards 2nd through 4th grade. So tell your teachers friends to enter! That's a LOT of free resources!!!

Good luck!

Schroeders Stars

Five for Friday (After a brief linky absence...) March 21!

I haven't done a Five for Friday link up in a couple of weeks. I would completely forget and I didn't want ALL of my FFFs on Saturday! Anyway, I apologize for my absence but I'm glad I'm back!

Here we go!

Because of my absence, I didn't post about our Dr. Seuss week! On Read Across America Day, my class was on a field trip, so I decided to celebrate the good doctor's birthday the following week. And due to my absence from the linky the last couple of weeks, I'll post about it now. :)

We made Green Eggs and Ham!
(Sorry the picture is so dark... the lights we dimmed because we were watching Horton Hears a Who...)

Because I have a student with allergies who couldn't eat the eggs, we also made a Cat in the Hat snack which was a huge hit with the kids. I sliced up bananas and strawberries and used one little grape at the bottom. I gave them all a skewer and they stacked their hats and an A/B pattern. It was so much fun and all of my students could eat this healthy snack.

I also made a Tic-Tac-Toe file folder game for our fun center. I found the idea on Pinterest and HAD to use it. I used it kind of like a "bonus" center for incentive for finishing the centers where they actually learned something. ;)

If you decide to make this as well... laminate the pieces!

I also used a game that I made that I posted about previously HERE. It is a Dr. Seuss themed game that I had originally used in a theater class I taught a few months ago. In the original class I used it for, I used it like a human board game, but this time around, I used a pocket chart that I found that fits the cards perfectly and I used it like a Jeopardy game. The game is sectioned into categories so it worked really well for that and since I used it whole group instead of small group, it worked out great that way.

Click the picture to go to the download!

We've been working on our shapes lately, which I'm sure a lot of people are, and we have done some pretty neat things. I posted about some of my activities HERE, but not all. We have had some really fun learning centers for shapes this week and I thank goodness for Pinterest! I found a lot of the ideas there!

PICTURE 1: I found this freebie on TpT for building 2D shapes out of toothpicks and marshmallows. I used it as a center this week and it was awesome! I can't believe it was free! Here's the link to Rachelle Rosenbilt's store and the free download.

PICTURE 2: I also incorporated a little Seuss into the mix with Prince Padania's pattern block designs. He's got some GREAT stuff on his store and the kids absolutely adored the Dr. Seuss pattern block pages. If you want to check it out before buying, I believe he has a Lorax freebie. HERE's the link.

PICTURE 3: We did some pattern block centers as well with masking tape, which they liked because they were bigger than the pattern block pages. Easy to make and easy to clean up!

PICTURE 4: And one of my favorite Pinterest finds is the picture in the bottom corner. I called them Shape Trace Bags but I'm not sure what others called them. It is SO SIMPLE. Cheap dollar store hair gel and food coloring. Draw a shape on a baggie with a sharpie and when the kids trace the shape, the gel holds what they drew in place. They were amazing. In the post I found on Pinterest, the bags were not secured down... but believe me when I tell you, using packing tape to tape the zipper part onto the table was the best decision I made this week...

And our FAVORITE anchor chart of ALL TIME, also found on Pinterest is....

Yeah... I went there. Huge success!

I am SO happy it is Spring Time!!!

We made wind socks this week out of plastic soda bottles and cut up strips of plastic table cloths. How cute are these?? We have a lot of things hanging from the ceiling right now so we ran out of clips, so we doubled up the wind socks. Pictured here are two hanging up hehe.

We cut the bottle's bottom off and had kids use sponge stampers with paint. The trick is to paint on the inside of the bottle, so if you decide to hang it outside, the humidity and water from rain won't wash the paint! Be warned that this is a messy project and to wear aprons for sure.

Because of St. Patrick's Day, I HAD to have some sort of fun leprechaun center! So, I incorporated it into my art center this week with a How to Draw a Leprechaun step by step activity. Their drawings came out so great! And the kiddos felt awesome because they were successful. I HIGHLY recommend step by step drawing with the youngsters because they love them, they are great for practicing following directions independently, and they will almost always experience success.

This is something my supervising teacher got at a yard sale or something. It's a chip holder from a gas station! It has tons of clips, so I decided to use it with my steps of drawing a leprechaun. I used index cards and a sharpie and that way every student could see it from their spot at the table and there was no fighting!

Look how awesome these turned out!!!!!!! OMG. I love them...

Tomorrow is my first official day of Spring Break! WOOO HOOO!

I am going to work on a few new products this week as well as a lot of work for my internship. When I return to school, I only have three weeks left until the end of my internship and then I graduate! I can't wait for my first classroom, ya'll!

Happy Spring!

March 18, 2014

Shapes Shapes Shapes

In the midst of the St. Patrick's Day chaos and the fact that this is the last week before Spring Break, I have to somehow teach these unfocused munchkins about shapes. What a chore!

Joking aside, we have been doing a lot of cool things with our unit on shapes. We are finishing up 2D shapes this week and when we get back to school from Spring Break, we will begin our adventure into 3D shapes!

For this unit, I created some centers that I decided to include in a 2D and 3D shape bundle for my TpT store. I really love how the activities turned out and how well they worked as centers in my math block.
Click HERE to see it or either of the pictures below.

I feel like a fool, though. I had the kids do all these awesome activities and I didn't get a good picture at all! I was so caught up in working with them and having fun with our shapes that I didn't pick up the camera. Maybe I'll do some review centers at the end of the week and sneak a few pictures in. Sorry, readers! But enjoy the Shape bundle!

Those Pesky Leprechauns!

Yesterday was my very first St. Patrick's Day in a Kindergarten classroom (with the exception of 20 years ago when I was in Kindergarten myself...)

What an experience! Those pesky leprechauns caused all sorts of chaos in our room!

They used our green counting bears and our green Legos! They turned all our puppet and stuffed animal bins over! They left notes on the peg boards and turned our center movers upside down!

They moved our class fish to the water fountain!

And they moved all of our clips to RED!

Even with the big mess we had to clean up, at least we were able to eat some Magical Leprechaun Food that the leprechauns left us!

Start with the white powder, add white milk, stir, and it turns green! Don't worry though, it didn't cause any kids to disappear. It was delicious, too! One student said, "Those leprechauns sure know how to eat!" :)  I couldn't have said it better myself.

The kids had a blast, but unfortunately we were unable to catch a leprechaun...

I really thought that this trap would do it though....

I present to you, The Leprechaun Kissing Booth, complete with beautiful leprechaun-sized lady dressed in gold, rainbows, and hearts. <3

I found this inside and it melted my heart! Even though she didn't catch the leprechaun, at least he was nice enough to write back to her! ;)

Happy St. Patrick's Day! Enjoy the rest of your week.

March 16, 2014


What. A. Week.

I can't believe I've let it go over a week without a solid post! It's ALMOST Spring Break and I am SOOOO ready. Unfortunately my kiddos are ready, too, and it is much harder to get them to focus right now. I have been coming home utterly exhausted everyday! So, yesterday, I took a much needed relaxing day. I didn't get out of my PJs and I played video games with my husband all day! In case you are a gaming fan like me, I have been playing a bit of League of Legends lately and it is TOUGH! I have only been playing for maybe 3 days and it is definitely addicting. I want to just keep playing and playing!

I am "Brutemanda" which is a play on my husband's gaming pen name "Brutall." In case you are interested, here is my husband's awesome YouTube channel: BrutallStatic. He is also always gaming on Twitch which is a streaming site. You can sometimes log in and watch me play as well, so check it out: Twitch, BrutallStatic.

In addition to taking a relax day, I did finish up a few TpT projects, including a freebie I'm posting for you, my readers! Here it is! I hope you enjoy it. I have been using it a lot in my Buddy Reading center for practice finding the main idea. :) CLICK HERE or click the IMAGE below.

Wish me luck on my last week before Spring Break and if your's happens to fall on the same week as mine, have a safe and relaxing break! <3

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday