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Make Your Own Sidewalk Chalk

Crafts Play Summer

Summer holidays are just about here and the little ones will have lots of free time to get outside, get playing and get creative! How about making your own sidewalk chalk they can use for lots of creative outside play? You can use them for hop scotch, bean bag toss, artwork or to draw a tic tac toe board for the fun relay game we posted here! We love this great recipe from Project Nursery:

What you need:

  • Plaster dry mix (like Plaster of Paris)
  • Tempura paint (use neon colours for best results)
  • Silicone pop mold
  • Wood popsicle sticks
  • Large plastic cups and plastic spoons
  • Cold water
  • Scissors

How to make it:

  1. First some safety precautions: Plaster mix can NOT be poured down the drain as it will harden in your pipes and cause damage. Use disposable cups and spoons for mixing, and throw any excess in the garbage. Since this is a bit of a messy craft it's great to do outdoors. Lastly, leave the mixing to older children and adults, as little ones may be tempted to have a taste and plaster should not be ingested.
  2. Before you start, chill water in the fridge for about 30 minutes. The water needs to be cold.
  3. Cut the ends of the wood popsicle sticks so that they measure about 3".
  4. Use one plastic cup for each colour you'd like to make. How much mixture is needed will depend on the size of your mold so you may need to adjust quantities a bit. Put 1/3 cup of cold water in each cup.
  5. Add about 2 tablespoons of tempura paint into the water.
  6. Use a plastic spoon for each cup to mix paint and water. It won't be completely smooth yet and that's okay.
  7. Now add 2/3 cups of plaster mix to the paint mixture. Stir with the spoon until it's completely combined and has the texture of thin yogurt.
  8. Carefully pour the mixtures into your mold. Once all colours are in the mold, tap the mold gently on a table a few times to release any air bubbles.
  9. It will only take a couple of minutes before the mixture starts to thicken. That's when you want to add your popsicle sticks (cut side down). 
  10. Set the mold to dry, if you can set them in sunlight it will go even faster. After about an hour you'll be able to pop the chalk out of the mold. Let them keep drying out of the mold. Ideally you'll want to wait about 24 hours for the plaster to really cure and give the pops a chalky feel. Although they will still work after a few hours dry time, if someone is really impatient :). 

Pictures from Project Nursery

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