Any sunny day, no matter the season, you might see my children and I drawing outside with sidewalk chalk.
But once spring and summer arrive, our chalk activities go on overload. We even run out of drawing space some days!
Today, I’m sharing some of our favorite sidewalk chalk activities and games.
Sidewalk chalk activities are an inexpensive and versatile way to have loads of fun outside.
And, chances are, your little guys will learn something while they’re playing, too!
Tic Tac Toe
This classic puzzle is an early introduction to problem-solving, strategy and patience.
My 4-year-old is obsessed with hopscotch. It’s a great way to get the blood pumping while practicing number recognition. She recently invented her own game where she added a piece of colored chalk to each square. We had to choose the color we wanted to “save” and pick them up while we jumped.
When my kids really need to get some energy out, I use sidewalk chalk to draw an obstacle course for them. Think lines to jump over, a swirl to spin around on, squares to hop in and out of, and so on. You could even add some other props, like a basketball to dribble.
I wish I could remember where I heard this idea so I could give them credit, but it’s been a winner with my kids for a couple of years. First, draw a random mix of shapes in rows. Then, have each child choose a shape and see if they can get from one end of the game to the other by only hopping on the shape they chose. Bonus points to the silliest jumper!
Just like the board game. Take turns drawing pictures and the rest of the group has to guess what it is. Remember, no clues!
Wet vs. dry chalk
Have your child soak a few pieces of chalk in some water. Then head outside for a mini science experiment to see how the wet chalk draws differently than the dry.
Have your child lie on the sidewalk and draw an outline of their body. Then have them fill it in with their clothes, hair, and face. Last time, my girl only wanted to draw spiky hair on her head, so I got to assist a bit on the clothes and shoes.
Guess the pattern
Filling in patterns is one way to enhance early math skills. Using chalk, draw some basic shapes in a simple pattern and have your child guess what comes next. Once they get the idea, add another shape or two to make it a little more tricky!
Lego car race track
Do you have lego maniacs like I do? Have them build their best LEGO racers while you draw some tracks. See which car can travel the fastest or the farthest.
Sometimes you just can’t wait for your garden to bloom. Draw your own!
Picture the game Hangman without the hangman. Write out a message leaving a few letters out. Have your children guess the letters that will fill in the spaces to finish the words. Once they get the hang of it, have your children take turns writing their own secret messages.
Road for scooters and bikes
My daughter is really into the rules of the road right now. So I draw her a road of her own, complete with stop signs and traffic lights. Great for practice taking turns.
Goals for soccer or bases for kickball
If you don’t have the extra equipment, you can still have a great game. Use sidewalk chalk to draw out big boxes for goals or small squares for bases. Game on!
I started using sidewalk chalk as an early reading tool a few years back when my son was first learning letters. And now, I’m doing the same for my little girl. We’ve matched upper and lower case letters, and circled the letters that make up her name.
Try making spray chalk
Getting tired of plain old sidewalk chalk? Check out this simple spray chalk recipe from Growing a Jeweled Rose for a new way to play!
If you’re looking for some extra ways to enjoy the chalk you have, check out these toys and accessories to add to the fun!
Sidewalk chalk can be a low-cost way to keep your children active and learning all year long.
I bet they could even come up with their own sidewalk chalk activities and games. Hand them some chalk on the next sunny day and let their imaginations run wild!