Have you tried making sidewalk chalk paint? It’s inexpensive and easy to prepare, but best of all, the kids will love it! It will keep them busy for hours in the summertime!
The dog days of summer can drag on and on…and on if you don’t have fun summer activities to keep the kids engaged. Most of you probably have sidewalk chalk sitting in a closet somewhere at this very moment. How about re-purposing this childhood staple?
Let’s make it more fun, more engaging, and give it more of a WOW factor! Are you ready? Stick with me…diy sidewalk chalk paint is easy-peasey!
THE EASIEST SIDEWALK PAINT RECIPE EVER!
A few summers ago, sidewalk chalk paint was all the rage.
And for good reason, too!
I don’t know about you, but I think sidewalk chalk feels terrible to write with. Sidewalk chalk is thick and bulky. It dries your hands. And as you pull it on the concrete it feels like…I can’t even describe it…other than…
It is just unpleasant!
And after all that, you hardly get any color on the sidewalk. I know it is a child favorite. I mean, just about every household has sidewalk chalk. But I personally just don’t like it.
The solution to this dilemma is easy, though.
Just make your sidewalk chalk into paint!
Now, a few summers ago when sidewalk chalk paint was infiltrating our Pinterest feeds, most recipes were a homemade solution that called for cornstarch (or sometimes baking soda) and food coloring. Well, food coloring can stain concrete!
And while I’d like to think my kids’ Jackson Pollock painting on our back patio is just a sign of their rising artistic genius, it doesn’t mean I permanently want it there!
My recipe won’t stain your driveway and won’t leave any residue behind, either. It cleans up quickly and easily with the spray of the hose.
Which is equally as fun for the kids. (Wink, wink).
Sure, there is store bought, brand name chalk paint available. But, it is much more economical and FUN to make it yourself! Keep scrolling and see just how easy it is!
FAQ ABOUT TEACHING A SUMMER THEME IN PRESCHOOL
A summer theme is perfect for learning about the ocean and all the amazing aspects of sea life. Picnics and camping are also great seasonal themes that encourage children to explore the outdoors. The farmer’s market is full of fresh fruit and vegetables so don’t forget to learn about healthy foods and eating habits!
Children catch on quickly that summer is the hottest time of the year, and that the trees have lots of leaves and flowers are often still in bloom. Share that during the summer season the temperature stays warm even after the sun goes down at night, making it a great time of the year to swim, go to the beach or lake, and spend time outside.
It’s important to also explain that summer comes between spring and fall. Some climates experience noticeable differences between season changes, while other climates are less different. One big difference that most children notice is that the days are longer in the summer than during winter months.
Preschoolers love completing art projects, blowing bubbles, playing at the water table (or with ice), exploring nature, playing outside games, drawing with sidewalk chalk, experimenting in the kitchen, and performing science experiments! No matter the activity, soak up the summer sun or even the rain with loads of our fun ideas! Even taking your usual preschool activities (like circle time) outside can be perfect for summer.
HOW DO YOU MAKE SIDEWALK CHALK PAINT WITH SIDEWALK CHALK?
This washable sidewalk chalk paint recipe requires some resting, but it really is still very quick and simple. This is my favorite sidewalk chalk paint recipe ever!
~ sidewalk chalk
~ zip top baggies (one for each color of chalk)
To make this crazy easy one ingredient sidewalk chalk paint recipe, just add a few sticks of sidewalk chalk to a zip top baggie. You can also double or triple the recipe by simply adding double or triple the amount of sidewalk chalk!
You’ll want to keep colors separate, unless of course you are interested in creating a new color.
Now, add some water.
The amount of water you need to add really depends on the brand and quality of sidewalk chalk you are using.
Leave the baggies of sidewalk chalk to “rest” overnight. The chalk will absorb with water, and you might need to add more. Your kiddos might think of it as their own little science experiment!
The water is important because the chalk needs to be completely saturated to make a paint that is not lumpy. Now, don’t worry about adding too much water, either. That’s almost impossible to do!
The sidewalk chalk will need to sit overnight. but to be completely honest, life got busy for us and the chalk ended up soaking for an entire week! You can’t ruin this recipe, so don’t worry!
Once the chalk has had a chance to thoroughly soak and absorb lots of water, (there should still be water remaining), carefully break the chalk into chunks of fourths while still in the bag.
Place the contents of the bag into a blender. Yup, you’re going to wiz this up into a thin paste. I used my “chop ice” setting to begin each color, then switched to “liquify” to finish. Using a blender eliminates most of the chunks of the chalk, and kind of emulsifies it with the water.
You may need to add some water, but don’t add too much. You want it to be about as thick as any other washable kids paint.
Pour each color into a small container for easy storage and get ready to paint the sidewalk with the kids!
HOW LONG DOES SIDEWALK CHALK PAINT LAST?
One of the things I love best about this sidewalk chalk paint recipe is that is lasts indefinitely. Just like regular sidewalk chalk, this paint has a shelf life of basically forever.
If you store the paint for long enough, the paint might dry out just a tiny bit (like any other paint). You might have to mix in just a little water to thin it out again.
DOES SIDEWALK CHALK PAINT WASH OFF?
The simple answer is yes. At least, this recipe does.
Truth be told, I have tried a lot of sidewalk chalk paint recipes that have claimed to be washable, and have ended up staining my driveway for a few months.
But since this recipe is made with sidewalk chalk, and only sidewalk chalk, it is as washable as the brand of chalk you use.
My one ingredient sidewalk chalk paint recipe washes off easily! Just spray down the concrete with the hose. Or, give the hose to your kids and let them do it. That just adds some water play for them on a hot summer day!
WHAT KIND OF PAINTBRUSH TO USE WITH SIDEWALK CHALK PAINT
Now, let’s talk about paintbrushes.
Concrete has a really rough texture, so it is hard on paintbrushes.
You can use the paintbrushes and containers designed for kid’s paint, but I found the rough concrete torn them up a little bit. I prefer to use cheap paintbrushes from the dollar store.
I have seen others use foam brushes, too. But my favorite is putting the paint in a squirt bottle, like this mom did. Although, in full disclosure, my kids did try to squirt each other and some outdoor pieces of furniture with the paint!
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IDEAS FOR USING SIDEWALK CHALK PAINT
Ok, now this is a stretch for kids, but these videos of artists using sidewalk chalk are amazing!
Make Tape Resist “Stained Glass” Art
Learn How to Blend Chalk Colors
Intricate Line Drawing Using Sidewalk Chalk
Whether your kids are the next budding Picasso or not, sidewalk chalk paint is sure to be a summertime favorite for all! With a few simple ingredients, you scan supply hours of outdoor fun for your kiddos.
Your driveway or sidewalk might just become the talk of the neighborhood! So, what are you waiting for? Dive on in for some summertime painting FUN!
I’m Sarah, an educator turned stay-at-home-mama of five! I’m the owner and creator of Stay At Home Educator, a website about intentional teaching and purposeful learning in the early childhood years. I’ve taught a range of levels, from preschool to college and a little bit of everything in between. Right now my focus is teaching my children and running a preschool from my home. Credentials include: Bachelors in Art, Masters in Curriculum and Instruction.