While chalk isn't very expensive, making your own allows you to express creativity in the shapes and colours of the chalk you make. It provides an educational activity to do with kids who can in turn use them to draw on a chalkboard or outside on the sidewalk. You'll want to make your chalk a day in advance as it takes about that long for it to dry and be usable.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
Things you need
- Molds (candy moulds, toilet paper tubes, Popsicle moulds, your own creativity)
- Exacto knife and scissors
- Waxed paper
- Masking tape
- Paper cups (regular size)
- Plaster of Paris
- Tempura paint
- Plastic spoons
- Tin can
Cut a toilet paper tube in half. Using sharp scissors or an exacto knife, cut the toilet paper tube down the length of the tube on one side, and repeat on the other side. You should have two open halves of the tube. Using waxed paper will allow you to reuse a mould, but cut several tubes so you can make more than two pieces of chalk at a time.
Trim pieces of waxed paper slightly larger than the size of the tube halves. Place the waxed paper on the inside of the tube folding the excess over to the outside edge. Tape the edges down. Make sure the waxed paper is flush against the tube. By changing out the waxed paper after each use, you can reuse the mould. If you don't want to hassle with the waxed paper, use the mould without it, but the mould won't be reusable.
Roll each tube into a cylinder with the waxed paper inside. Adjust the width to the size (diameter) you'd like for the chalk. Tape the seam closed with masking tape. You should now have a long cylinder tube lined with waxed paper.
Making Cylindrical Molds
Fill a full size paper cup 3/4th of the way with water, add several spoonfuls of Plaster of Paris to the water and stir. The chalk should be the consistency of runny pancake batter. If needed, add more Plaster of Paris.
Add tempura paint if you'd like colour. The more you add, the darker the colour will turn out. Start by adding just a few drops of paint; add more if you want a darker shade.
Put the cylindrical moulds into a paper cup or tin can to hold them in place. Because of its straight sides, a tin can is the best option.
Pour the chalk mixture into the moulds. If you're using the cylindrical moulds, tap the cup or the can with the moulds on the counter to remove air bubbles, and fill the moulds with the mixture. If you're using other moulds, tap them on the counter to remove air bubbles.
Let dry overnight. Once dry, remove the chalk from the moulds. Peel the tape off the cylindrical moulds and unroll the chalk. Discard the waxed paper, and save the cardboard tubes for another time.
Tips and warnings
- Make fat chalk by using the whole toilet paper tube or small (142gr.) paper cups.
- Chalk washes off surfaces easily with water.
- The chalk is safe; however, supervise children during the making of the cylindrical moulds.
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