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Who doesn’t love sidewalk chalk? There is something so fun about drawing pictures and writing messages all over your driveway and sidewalk. Not only does chalk art give you a chance to get outside and enjoy the sunshine with your kids, but it offers a creative way to have fun together. From doodling all over your driveway and sidewalks to fun learning activities, the chalk art possibilities are endless. Here are 15 chalk art activities to get you outdoors and encourage your creative side.
DIY Sidewalk Chalk
Homemade Sidewalk Chalk
If you are looking for a project, look no more. You can make your own sidewalk chalk from scratch with only three ingredients: water, plaster of paris, and washable tempera paint.
Mix your ingredients together until it is a frosting-like consistency. Pour the mixture into ice cube trays or fun silicone candy molds. Let the chalk dry for 24 hours before unmolding. That is it! The cool part about making homemade sidewalk chalk is that you can make whatever colors and shapes you like (it would make fun birthday party favors for a spring or summer birthday party too). Then let your kids’ imaginations soar when they cover the driveway in their chalk art.
For the exact recipe, visit I Heart Naptime.
Recycled Chalk Paint
What do you do with all those little nubs of sidewalk chalk? They probably get left alongside the driveway or abandoned at the bottom of the bucket of chalk. Put them to use instead of letting them go to waste. Have your kids gather up as many of the little chalk ends as they can find and in six easy steps you can have homemade chalk paint!
After collecting the chalk bits (you can also use larger pieces of chalk or new chalk if you do not have enough bits and end pieces), have your children sort them by color, placing each color in a different freezer bag. Crush up each color until all that’s left is a fine powder – the kids will really enjoy taking care of this task. Pour the powder into a muffin tin or use empty butter and sour cream containers. Add water to each color and stir before letting the colors sit for about half an hour.
Now comes the fun part – using a paintbrush, use your homemade chalk paint to create massive watercolor chalk art masterpieces all over your driveway and sidewalk.
For the full instructions, visit Rhythms of Play.
If you have some hot days coming up, homemade ice chalk makes for a fun art and science activity to keep the kids entertained. Mix up a batch of chalk with cornstarch, water, and either food coloring or washable paint. Pour into ice cube trays or molds and place them in the freezer until frozen.
When your chalk ice cubes are ready, use them like regular sidewalk chalk or try some fun experiments. If you used fun molds for your ice chalk, they make cool stamps as they start to melt. Have ice chalk melting races and see which colors melt the fastest in the sun. Mix them together and see what cool colors and chalk art you can make.
Find the full instructions and some fun variations on ice chalk, visit Reading Confetti.
Puffy Sidewalk Chalk
For a super fun variation on sidewalk chalk, make your own puffy sidewalk chalk with things you already have at home. Grate up about half a piece of chalk with a cheese grater. Mix your ground chalk with flour, water, and dish soap and pour it into a squeeze bottle (an empty ketchup bottle works great too).
Make a few different colors and fill up several squeeze bottles to create some amazing puffy chalk art in your driveway. The kids will love squeezing the chalk out of the squeeze bottles and they will find that they can make all kinds of pictures and patterns with it.
Find the instructions at The Best Ideas for Kids.
Creative Chalk Art Ideas
Chalk Art Town
Have hours of fun by drawing a giant chalk art town and roadway all over your driveway. Draw a twisty, turvy roadway complete with a yellow dotted line in the middle to divide the lanes. Then have your kiddos draw buildings, houses, trees, and whatever else they would like in their town. Once you have it all drawn out, have your kids dig out their toy cars and drive all over their chalk art town.
This is a fun playtime activity because it gets the kids’ creative juices flowing, and then they get to play on their chalk art.
Fun Photo Op Scenes
Drawing fun chalk art scenes for your kids to participate in as a character makes a fun afternoon activity – and makes for some fun photos!
Draw butterfly or bird wings and have your kids lie down in the middle as if they are the body of the butterfly or the bird. Try your hand at an outer space scene and have your kids pose like they are bouncing on the moon. Next, draw an umbrella to keep out some chalk art raindrops and then have your little ones lie down and pose like they are holding the umbrella handle. You could even draw an underwater scene and have your kids lie down on the ground and pose like they are swimming through the ocean. Really commit to the scene and have them put on bathing suits.
Take pictures of their poses in all your scenes as a reminder of your fun afternoon. They could also make for some fun Christmas card photos.
Chalk Art Sports
Fill up your driveway and sidewalk with your own miniature golf course. Make twisty turvy lanes that you have to keep the golf balls in and then design the “holes” at the end of each lane to keep with whatever golf course theme your kids would like – a wild animal course, a circus course, a dinosaur course, or mix it up and make each one different. It is your chalk art, so your golf course can be designed however your kids can imagine it!
After miniature golf, or if you are more of a tennis or basketball fan, try another sport! Draw a court for tennis, volleyball, or basketball, then get out the rackets and balls for a real match on your beautifully chalked court.
Introduce your kids to the games you used to play on the playground. Start with hopscotch and four square. Once you have played those for awhile and reveled in your elementary school glory days, move on to some good old tic tac toe and a few games of sidewalk chalk hangman (use a wet rag or sponge to wash away each round so you do not run out of driveway or sidewalk space too quickly).
After you have played all the old stand-bys, take it up a notch with a giant chalk art version of checkers! Draw a giant checkerboard and use frisbees, paper plates, or cut out circles from recycled cardboard for the game pieces. Because who doesn’t love a giant version of a board game?
Get your kids moving with your very own chalk art “obstacle” course. Write out instructions like “turn in a circle,” “touch your toes,” “jump up and down three times” along with some cute directional pictures for your kids to follow along their custom course. You can also draw squiggly lines to follow, straight lines to jump over, and spirals to spin on. The possibilities are endless.
For a fun example and some ideas for “obstacles” to include, visit MattyAngel.com.
The Ground is Lava
Just about every kid has played the floor is lava game where you try to move across a room (or the entire house) without stepping on the floor. Use chalk art to play an outside version of the floor is lava that will not cause all your couch cushions to end up on the floor as stepping stones.
Draw a series of stepping stones along your driveway or sidewalk. Make sure they are spaced apart and are not too close to each other. Then draw flames or lava in between the “stepping stones” and challenge your kids to hop across the stones without touching the lava. Make it more challenging and have some of the stones turn into lava in between rounds!
Playful Learning Activities
Have fun with sidewalk chalk and work on the alphabet and spelling with this easy and adaptable Alphabet Game. With a piece of chalk, start by drawing a 6 square by 6 square grid so that you end up with a total of 36 spaces. Now randomly write a letter of the alphabet in each square of the grid, but instead of keeping the letters in order, scatter them throughout the board. Since there are 26 letters in the alphabet, and the grid has 36 spaces, there will be extra squares left over. These will be used as free spaces, so scatter those out throughout the grid too.
Now that your board is ready, there are a number of alphabet-related games you can play. With younger kids, have them start by standing on the letter ‘A’ and then jump to the letter ‘B’ and so on until they make it through the entire alphabet. If letters are too far apart, they can jump on a free space to get closer. Have older kids spell out words. Give them words to spell or play a game where each person takes turns spelling a word in a certain category like animals, food, toys, or whatever else you can come up with.
If you have budding readers at home, use chalk art to work on letter sounds. Write letters all over your sidewalk or driveway. Then, draw a carrot around each letter. Now arm your kiddo with a spray bottle of water and ask them to “water the carrot” that makes the “ahh” sound. Now water the carrot with a ‘W,’ You can even work on capital versus lower case letters with this type of game and have them water the carrot with a lowercase ‘a’ or an uppercase ‘T.’
If you have a little firefighter on your hands, you can change it up and draw flames around your letters instead of carrots and ask them to put out the fire that makes the “tuh” sound or that has a lowercase ‘f.’
Help your little ones learn numbers and basic math through chalk art with this counting game. Start by drawing a grid like you did for the Alphabet Game. Instead of letters, this time fill the grid with numbers (scatter them all out and once again leave some blank spaces). Start with the numbers 1-20.
For younger kids who are still working on number recognition, have your little one start on the number 1 and then count moving to the next number and the next until they get to the number 20. If numbers are too far apart, they can jump on a free space to get closer. Once your kid has those mastered, erase your board and move up to some larger numbers or draw a bigger grid and add more numbers.
You can also use this same style grid to do some basic math with slightly older kids. If you have a grid with the numbers 1-20, give your kid a basic math equation to solve like 5+4, 9-3, etc. Then have them stand on the square that has the correct answer (just be sure the answer is less than 20!). For more advanced mathematicians, just include larger numbers in your grid.
Outdoor Math “Board Game”
Another way to take math outdoors is with this outdoor math “board game.” Start by drawing a path on the ground by making two squiggly lines parallel to each other and then divide your path into spaces by drawing horizontal lines every foot and a half or so (think something like the path from Candyland). Write “start” at one end and “finish” at the other. Now fill each space with a simple math equation. Depending on your children’s math level, consider alternating addition and subtraction. If they are more advanced, add in some multiplication and division spaces.
Once your board is ready, it is time to play! Using a single die from an inside game you have (if you have a fun set of big foam dice, one of those would be perfect and easier to see from afar), have your kids take turns rolling the die and moving the correct number of places just like on a regular board game, except this time they are the game pieces. Once they get to the correct space, they have to answer the math equation. If they get it right, they get to take another turn. If they get it wrong, it’s the next person’s turn. Keep rolling and solving problems until everyone gets to the finish.
Help your preschooler learn shapes and even colors with this simple shape maze. Draw a variety of shapes in rows all over your driveway or sidewalk, making sure to alternate the shapes throughout so that you have some of each shape in each row. Start by choosing a shape, a square for example. Have your kids stand in the first row on that shape (a square). Now they must get through the “maze” by only stepping on squares until they get to the other side. Next have them come back by only stepping on another shape, maybe triangles this time.
You can play a few variations of this game too. Have your kids step on every one of a certain shape in the maze. This is also a fun way to work on colors. Try to make it across by only stepping on the red squares or the yellow triangles.
Sidewalk chalk is a great way to take advantage of the beautiful weather and spend some time outdoors. Chalk art makes for a fun family activity that lets you enjoy the outdoors and spend some family time together. Have fun making chalk art drawings or sneak in a little learning with some outdoor learning activities. Whatever you do, have fun doing it!
WANT TO READ MORE?
Check out this article Get Outdoors with a Nature Scavenger Hunt.
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