Making for Kids

How to Make Sidewalk Chalk Paint 3 Ways [An Art Project For Kids When You’re Stuck at Home]

Yesterday I missed posting a new activity because it was my birthday and I took the night off. But never fear, we’re back at it today. And for each of these activities, my family does it first! My kids have helped with each project so we know what it’s like first hand.

Today’s project is how to make sidewalk chalk paint. There are several recipes circulating so I thought it would be fun to try out a few and report back which one we liked best.

So without further ado, let’s get into it.

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Recipe #1 For Sidewalk Chalk Paint: Cornstarch and Water

The first recipe is about as simple as it gets. Here’s what you need to make it:

Items to help make it:

In order to make it, add equal parts water and cornstarch into a two-cup measuring cup. If you want it to be a little thicker you can add more cornstarch.

Once you have it mixed up well, pour your mixture into a muffin pan.

Add your food coloring and mix it up.

That’s it! You’re done. You can take these outside and let your kids start painting all over your sidewalks.

But first, let’s look at recipe #2.

Recipe #2 For Sidewalk Chalk Paint: Cornstarch, Baking Soda, and Water

The second recipe is very similar to the first, but with one extra ingredient.

Here’s what you need:

Items to help make it:

For this recipe, mix together equal parts baking soda and cornstarch. Add water until the mixture becomes the consistency you want.

Once you’ve finished this step, pour your mixture into a muffin pan.

The next step is to add your food coloring! The gel food coloring took some time to mix in, but it eventually incorporated into the mixture.

Then that’s it! You can take your sidewalk chalk paint outside and start painting right away!

Recipe #3 For Sidewalk Chalk Paint: Broken Sidewalk Chalk and Water

The last recipe was certainly my kids’ favorite because they were able to use a hammer. Here’s what you need to make this sidewalk chalk recipe:

Here are the additional tools you need:

  • Little baggies
  • A Hammer
  • Containers to put the sidewalk chalk paint in

Step 1 to Making Sidewalk Chalk with Chalk

The first step is really fun for kids. You put the sidewalk chalk into a baggie and let them smash it with a hammer. Ideally, the sidewalk chalk would be your broken leftovers that your kids didn’t want to use anymore. We didn’t have that so they were allowed to smash up perfect pieces of chalk.

Yes, the hammer will break through the bag. Yes, it will make a bit of a mess. It can easily be an outside project so your house doesn’t get messy. I also felt that it was helpful to put a grocery store baggie around it for extra protection.

Step 2 to Making Sidewalk Chalk Paint with Chalk

Here is the sidewalk chalk all broken up and put into containers.

I just couldn’t stop taking pictures of the broken sidewalk chalk. The texture and color was just so pretty.

Step 3 to Making Sidewalk Chalk Paint with Chalk

The last step to making sidewalk chalk paint with chalk is to add water. I did see one recipe that suggested putting the sidewalk chalk through the blender. I wasn’t sure how I felt about using my blender in this way, but I’m sure it would make the sidewalk chalk paint really smooth!

Add the water!

Mix it up!

Now that we’ve used the three recipes to make sidewalk chalk paint, we’re now going to see which one we like best!

Cornstarch and Water Chalk Paint Test Results

Do you like how I marked one side of the muffin pan with stickers so I would remember which one was which? Anyway…

Here are the results of the first recipe:

This type of sidewalk chalk paint took several coats for coverage. It didn’t spread smoothly but the colors were still pretty at the end.

The colors do look a lot prettier when they dry!

One pet peeve about this recipe is if you don’t use it right away the cornstarch and water separate. They have to be stirred up again or you can’t use it. I find this to be pretty annoying — and since we did all the recipes at one time — it gave it a good amount of time to separate.

Cornstarch and Baking Soda Chalk Paint Test Results

Here I am trying out the baking soda and cornstarch concoction. This one was a little easier to spread than the other cornstarch and water recipe. Here is what it looks like while wet:

Here’s what it looks like dry:

This recipe had the same problem with separating. In fact, it was even harder to stir up again once it separated. The paint was easier to spread than the other recipe, but the dried look was very similar to the other recipe.

Sidewalk Chalk and Water Chalk Paint Test Results

Here’s how the sidewalk chalk paint made with sidewalk chalk stacked up (I’ll bet that’s a hard sentence to say out loud).

This chalk paint was the easiest to paint with and the colors were the most vibrant! Here is what it looks like dry:

Final Analysis of the Sidewalk Chalk Paint Recipes

Now that we’ve done a comprehensive experiment, we have to post our results.

Ranking in order:

Cornstarch and Water & Cornstarch and Baking Soda Tie for SECOND PLACE.

Overall, they’re pretty similar. The cornstarch and water recipe was easier to mix up but harder to paint with. The baking soda and cornstarch recipe was a little easier to paint with but was difficult to mix up once separated. Both had similar results once dried.

These recipes are fun and work well — especially if they’re the only ingredients you have on hand!

WINNER Sidewalk Chalk and Water is FIRST PLACE. 

This recipe was the most fun to make, easiest to apply, and the most vibrant colors. If I were to make sidewalk chalk paint again this is the recipe that I would use! The only thing I would change next time is perhaps crushing up the chalk finer. Either way, they had a lot of fun painting with this one and they ALSO had a lot of fun making it.

Most kids are going to enjoy crushing up chalk with a hammer.

Those of You Who Don’t Want to Make Something

Those of you who really don’t enjoy doing crafts with your kiddos — I’ve got your back. Just buy a box of sidewalk chalk and let them have fun coloring and drawing things.

Here’s a fun activity with sidewalk chalk that you can do in your own driveway:

Sometimes when we use sidewalk chalk we like to draw roads for the matchbox cars. We also use make driveways, houses, businesses and parking lots. The kids love driving their cars all along the roads.

This time we also took at little horses and made pastures and barns for them.

Here’s a picture of the pasture and barn with stalls.

OK, that wraps up this day’s activity. Let us know what you think of the recipes and if you have a favorite one!

Keep checking back for new activities to do with your kids while you’re stuck at home, and let us know if you have anything you’d like us to cover.

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For now, stay safe and enjoy your family time.

– the Making Life

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