Monday, June 13, 2011

Sidewalk paint--with a sizzle!

I jumped on the blogger bandwagon, and decided to try sidewalk chalk with my kids. I first saw it at Hands On: As We Go , at Quirky Momma, and at Child Central Station. I just knew I had to try it!

We went outside with:
  • 1 box of cornstarch
  • 1 box of baking soda
  • Liquid water colors
  • cups (at least one for each child)
  • Paint brushes (same)
  • Vinegar in Spray bottles
I decided to pair this activity with water day to make clean-up easier. This way, I could literally hose them down afterwards. 

Being my typical enthusiastic and creative-but-usually-unorganized-and-forgetful-self, I forgot to bring measuring cups to make the recipe correctly. 

Luckily, I'm good at improvising. I just used my hands.
I measured about a handful of cornstarch and a handful of baking soda into each container, a squirt of color, and mixed in water a little at a time until it was easy to paint with, but thick enough to paint with.

The directions were simple. You can paint the sidewalk, walls, trees, toys, and yourself. Go play!
They painted the bikes and the sidewalk.
They painted themselves.

They painted their shoes.

They painted the tree, or as our class lovingly calls it, "the horse."

What a colorful horse!

They painted the other trees too.

Chloe painted her face and said, "Look, I'm Simba!" (from the Lion King)
Anya said, "Oooh!" as she saw and heard the sizzle from the baking soda/vinegar reaction.

I love the painted belly!
When they needed more paint, they helped themselves--not my original intention, but hey---that's what it was for!
The vinegar bottles were popular, but they didn't produce as much sizzle as I thought they would. They were quickly dumped out, and re-filled with water.
Meanwhile, the water table turned into a mixing bucket.
Ready to go inside.
Sidewalk chalk? SUCCESS. 
Fizzing sidewalk chalk? Maybe next time (I'll add more baking soda).
The best part? EASY CLEAN UP! It took only a few minutes to hose down the sidewalks, walls, trees, and children. The tree kept its color, which I kind of love.

Happy playing! 


  1. How fun! I love that they painted the trees!

  2. I love this. It is so fun that they painted on the trees too. Awesome idea!

  3. Thank you both! You know it's a good activity when 2/3 of the class stayed engaged for the majority of our water play time! It was a lot of should try it!


Thanks for you comment! Happy playing!

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