Level Up Your Sidewalk Chalk Skills This Summer

Summer is full of sunny days begging you to go outside! From hiking to beach days, you probably have plenty of activities you want to check off your summer activity list. One classic outdoor activity you can do anywhere with sidewalks or driveways is getting creative with chalk.

(Photo via Shutterstock)

Sometimes the hardest part with chalk is getting started. You may be thinking, “But what should I draw?” Here is a list of activities to inspire you to spend the whole afternoon drawing.

1. Create your own forest preserve or zoo. Start by drawing a habitat. Make trees, ponds, prairies, maybe even an ocean! Then add your animals. In the forest preserves we see foxes, raccoons, snakes, owls, chipmunks, squirrels, deer and so much more! Have a favorite exotic animal? Create a zoo with different biomes like a rainforest, the arctic or maybe an insect house. Then add lions, tigers and bears, oh my!

2. Selfie mode. Take a chalk selfie of you and your friends. See how well you can draw yourself. Gather some friends and draw each other. Draw yourselves and see if someone can guess who is who. Don’t forget to draw in a decorative frame when the picture is complete!

3. Color in nature. Get out every color of chalk you have. Make a circle for every color and then color them in. Now see if you can find items in your yard that match the colors. Green may be the easiest, with grass and different kinds of leaves. Do you have any pink or yellow flowers growing? Can you find any white rocks? When you find the items, place them in the matching color circle. Which circle has the most?

4. Look to the stars. Have you ever looked up at the stars at night and wondered how many constellations you are seeing? At first glance it can be hard to pick them apart and notice their shapes. Get practice by making chalk constellations. Look up constellations online or in a book. Use dots for the stars and lines to connect them, revealing their shapes. Grab a friend to see if they can guess which constellations you drew. Then stay up to see the stars and see if you can find the constellations you drew. Another idea is to make your own constellation! Every constellation has a story, so create your own constellation and tell a story on how it came to be.

5. Extreme hopscotch. You may have hopped through the squares while playing hopscotch before, but you can take this game to the next level. Draw in different patterns with different rules to follow: squares for hopping, circles for twirling, follow the line in loops and wiggles, and two zig zags to stretch out those legs while walking. Make up your own rules and challenges along the way. Who can do it the fastest? Who can do it backward?

6. Make a maze. Claim a square of sidewalk to create your own maze. Make a start and a finish, and don’t forget to add in some dead ends. Grab a toy car and a friend. See if your friend can drive the car to the finish without getting stuck! Now switch. Let your friend draw a maze for you.

7. The driveway is lava. Eek!!! Your driveway has turned into a huge pit of lava. Draw in stones, logs and stumps for a few places to leap to safety. Make sure they are far apart so you need to stretch and jump from spot to spot. Can you make it to the end of the driveway? Be careful not to fall into the lava or you will have to start over!

8. Stencils. Not sure you are the best at drawing? Use a stencil to fill in or trace around. There are many options you can find online. Another idea is to dig into the baking supplies and look for cookie cutters. They make great stencils!

9. Bullseye. How good is your aim? How far can you throw? Test your skills by drawing different targets on the ground. Make some big and some tiny. Draw some close and some far. Grab stones, acorns, pinecones, bean bags or even water balloons to toss. Add point values to raise the stakes. Smaller and further targets are worth more points. What will your strategy be? Go for the harder targets for the bigger points or add up the smaller points from easier targets?

(Photo via Shutterstock)

10. Dream big. Draw life-sized scenes to transform yourself for a photo. Draw a plane you can pilot, a beach chair and the ocean to lounge by, a tree to climb or even go to the moon — just remember to draw yourself a helmet and an oxygen tank! Once you have created your scene, lay down to be a part of it for a picture.

Feeling more confident with your chalk skills? Are you up for a bigger challenge? Monee Reservoir wants to see what you've got with the “Sidewalk Chalk Challenge” from July 11 to 31. We’ll supply the chalk and the sidewalk; you supply the creativity! Create your own unique sidewalk chalk design and enter it in our contest for fabulous prizes. At the conclusion of the “Sidewalk Chalk Challenge,” prizes will be awarded for most creative, most reflective of Monee Reservoir and best in show.


Need a little more inspiration before entering? Join us July 10 for a "Sidewalk Chalk Challenge Kickoff" by watching local chalk artists do their thing! Registration is required.

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