As you may remember from once or twice before, we are all about hopscotch on this blog. And now that school is in session and tomorrow fall will be official (in the N. hemisphere anyway), there are plenty of reasons to play. A game of hopscotch, of course, requires chalk. White chalk will do, but pretty stripey chalk will do even better. So we thought we’d better make some.
By the way, all pictures are courtesy of my husband’s iPhone. My poor Canon is in the shop again. I miss it.
We developed this chalk recipe last year with the leftovers from an art project I did for my daughter’s class. The best part about this homemade chalk is that it is c-h-e-a-p. And it turns out great chalk. Go to your hardware store and pick up a five-pound tub of joint compound or drywall mud. You’ll pay five bucks at most. We had a giant leftover tub, so we went with that. For a mold, we used IKEA’s water bottle ice molds.
Other materials we used were powdered tempera (liquid tempera works too), a few baggies, and we decided to add in a few strips of our favorite colors of tissue paper, which worked great with the chalk, and adhered well too without any fuss.
Dump or squirt your tempera into your joint compound and mix well. The powdered tempera will keep the whole thing a little drier, and make it a little more like dough, while the liquid tempera often turns out a little brighter.
We added a few stripes of tissue paper, just for decoration. We found that overlapping tissue paper colors does NOT work as well as spacing out the stripes. The spaced stripes held out better when the chalk dried. Glitter is also fun to dump into the molds before adding the chalk dough.
Depending on how thick your joint compound is, clip off a corner and pipe it from your bag, or pull out a handful and press it into the mold. It’s fun letting the kiddos experiment with different pieces of tissue paper and different colors of chalk dough.
This is the hardest part. Leave it alone and let it dry. Depending on how wet it is, it will take two to three days. When the top of ours was mostly dry, I tore off the scraps of tissue paper and popped the chalk out of the mold to let the bottom dry.
But back to the chalk. We’re planning on giving these out for my daughter’s star student week in class. We did another DIY art supply for my son’s school bday favor last year and they went over well, so we thought we’d give these a try.