Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Two Things

I learned two things yesterday.

#1- I can scream like a rooster. 

Seriously.  Have your kid dash behind a car that's backing up in a parking lot and see if you can too.  It's amazing what can come out of you in a split second of panic. It sounded something like "OHJAREDJACARR!"

#2- Buying sidewalk chalk in the store really is the way to go.

We decided to do an art project: making our own sidewalk chalk.  Wasn't as easy as I thought it would be. I realize it would have been cheaper and easier to just buy our own but we wanted to experience making it ourselves. We also learned about exothermic reactions when we noticed the mix was warm after pouring it.  Pretty cool.

The downside: people on the videos and tutorials I watched really made it look like a piece of cake.  Probably because they were all making ONE piece of chalk.  Was I over ambitious to think we could make TWELVE? Apparently so.

We stopped after making 6 sticks and 2 balls.  Here's how they came out.  Don't laugh.

If you'd like to try to make your own, here's how we did it.

You will need:
plaster of paris (I bought a 4 lb container)
wax paper
plastic cups
plastic spoons for mixing
food coloring
toilet paper rolls
cookie sheet or covered surface

First, line your toilet paper rolls with wax paper.  Roll it up, slip it in and cut off excess. Tape to secure it.

Next, cover one end of the tube with scrap of wax paper.  Tape down.  This will be the bottom of your tube.

Repeat with all of your tubes, turn upside down and place on your cookie sheet.

Mix plaster of paris, water and food coloring.  You will have to play with the amounts. I never did get exact measurements.  Use about 8-10 heaping teaspoons of plaster and a little less than equal amount of water.  You want the consistency not to be runny, but not as thick as peanut butter.  You will get a feel for it when you try to pour it in your tube.  Add food coloring and mix well.  Pour into tubes immediately after mixing- it will harden fast!

As I mentioned above, you will notice the mixture becomes warm as it's turning into a solid.

Let dry for 24 hours.  Cut a slit in your tube and peel off wax paper. 

Have fun!


  1. Okay, I might need a live demonstration of the rooster call. Also, while cool, I think I'll buy my sidewalk chalk. Lol They are huge, though. Don't worry about shape. A little drawing on the asphalt will straighten that right up.

  2. Ok, maybe it's just me but I think it is tremendously cool that your background has colored dots now...sort of like what would be made by sidewalk chalk. :-P