Ice Chalk

Ice Chalk is the perfect kid activity for a hot summer day. Frozen chalk makes a great art, science, and sensory experience all in one.
Ice chalk

While I was looking for activities the kids and I could do outside this summer, I saw lots of recipes for homemade sidewalk chalk paint. I briefly considered making some and putting it in spray bottles, but I knew it would only be a matter of time before they squirted each other.

Since it's been so hot here, the logical alternative was to freeze the chalk paint and make it into ice chalk.

ice chalk


ice chalk

I mixed up the sidewalk paint (half cornstarch, half water, plenty of food coloring), poured it into ice cube trays, and froze it.

ice chalk

At first, the lighter colors didn't seem to be working. The pavement just looked wet, but when the water dried the colors were more vibrant.

ice chalk

It turned out to be even more fun than I thought it would be. Besides using the chalk to draw, they used it in lots of other ways:

3D sculptures:
ice chalk
Lainey's rainbow
Color melting races:
ice chalk

Stamps:
ice chalk

Prints:
ice chalk

Color mixing experiments:
ice chalk

The cornstarch makes it thick when it melts, so it's fun to experiment with.

ice chalk

We even snuck in a little science by discussing what caused the ice chalk to melt the fastest.

ice chalk

Play clothes are a must for this activity. Next time I'm going to try washable paint instead of food coloring to reduce the amount of staining on their hands and clothes.


But clean up was fun too.


Update: We did a variation of these using washable paint in this post about frozen popsicle chalk.


And 6 other variations of ice chalk here:





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32 comments:

  1. Oh I love this super fun idea! I've made paint chalk before, but never thought of freezing it! Thanks for the idea :-)

    http://thisfineday.com/

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  2. This looks like a lot of fun! I am going to add it to our summer bucket list!

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  3. This is awesome. It never even occurred to me to freeze the chalk. I love this. We are definitely doing this. :)

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  4. So fun Lorie!!! We will be trying this one for sure!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Megan! It really was lots of fun.

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  5. Replies
    1. We only used it on our blacktop driveway and didn't have a problem. Not sure about sidewalks. I haven't heard about anyone having a problem with the regular chalk spray. Does anybody else know?

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  6. That looks like so much fun! Great idea.

    I would love if you would come link up on our Artsy Play Wednesday linky.

    http://www.babygiveawaysgalore.com/2013/05/artsy-play-wednesday-kids-craft-linky_22.html

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  7. I make my littles sidewalk paint all the time. I add a few drops of liquid dish detergent to it so it washes off the sidewalk faster and stains them less. Without the dishsoap it took two washings to completely wash away.

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    Replies
    1. That's such a great tip!! Thanks, Sara!

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  8. Thanks for sharing on the Sunday Showcase - linked to you as one of my featured posts this week :)

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  9. Such a cool idea! And I love how you turned them into popsicles to make painting (and clean up) easier. So smart :) We'll be featuring this over at Someday Crafts tomorrow, so come take a look!

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  10. So, I think I missed it... does the paint work better than 'chalk'? If so, what kind of paint are you using, liquid tempera, do you think powdered tempera might mix better or not... (washable, of course) and I add dish soap to everything, lol..the new teachers look at me as if I've lost it, until that first 'wash-off' - then it's nirvana! :-)

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  11. So, I think I missed it... does the paint work better than 'chalk'? If so, what kind of paint are you using, liquid tempera, do you think powdered tempera might mix better or not... (washable, of course) and I add dish soap to everything, lol..the new teachers look at me as if I've lost it, until that first 'wash-off' - then it's nirvana! :-)

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    1. The chalk paint looks the same as chalk when it's dry. It's just a different sensory experience to have it cold and melt into a liquid. For this batch I used food coloring and for the popsicle chalk I used washable liquid tempura. They worked the same as far as coloring the sidewalk went. The paint was easier to get off their hands though. I think the powdered would probably work fine, but I haven't tried it. I think the dish soap idea is awesome and I'm definitely adding it next time!

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  12. Lorie,

    I love this craft and some of your others as well. If you're interested, I'd like to feature you on AllFreeKidsCrafts.com. Please contact me at jholtzman (at) primecp (dot) com to further discuss this opportunity.

    Best,

    Jaclyn
    Editor, AllFreeKidsCrafts.com

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  13. We had lots of fun with chalk paint recently - never thought to freeze it. What a brilliant idea. I've featured this post on my Tuesday Tots post this week. Thanks for linking up. Feel free to stop by and grab a featured at button if you like! http://www.oneperfectdayblog.net/2013/05/28/outdoor-play-ideas-for-kids/

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  14. What a fun twist!! I love it. Thank you for sharing on Sharing Saturday!!

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  15. I have never done this before first time seeing this could you please tell me how much of each thing to use to make it please? My girls would love doing this :) Thank you. Erin

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    1. Erin, I think I used one cup of cornstarch and one cup of water. I didn't measure the food coloring but I used lots because it will get lighter as it freezes.

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    2. thank you so much :) I am going to try this with my girls I know they are going to have alot of fun :)

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  16. Wonderful stuff! Can't wait to play with my grand kidlits! Thanks for sharing this! :)

    Love,

    Bopa (what they call me)

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  17. I can't wait to try this!! I will post about it on my list with your link when I try it out with my kiddos! Thanks for the idea :)

    Catherine
    http://www.capturinginspirations.com

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  18. What a cool idea. And it looks awesome after it melts. Love it all melted together!

    Thanks for sharing!
    Pinning!

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  19. You can make the food coloring paint washable by adding a few drops of dis detergent. I did this with my kids when they were small. Dish detergent made it super washable. ;)

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  21. This looks like wonderfully messy fun!

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  22. I worry that putting it into popsicle form might encourage the kids to think about putting them in their mouths -- at least until they taste them. Was that a problem for you?

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    Replies
    1. No, they had already played with the cubes so they knew it wasn't edible. If you use food coloring, cornstarch, and water, it would be safe if they tasted it. And I doubt they would taste them twice! :)

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