A pack of sidewalk chalk and a blank "canvas" of a driveway can be amazing fun for kids. As a mom, I love that they are using their creativity, imagination, getting fresh air, and sometimes even collaborating nicely with one another.
Instead of just drawing some chalk monsters or pretty squiggles, why not turn chalk-time into game-time. This means movement and exercise for the whole family. That means you don't just watch your kids or grand kids having all the fun - you join in too!
Here are five ways we turn sidewalk chalk into "gym class":
1. Four Square
Do you remember foursquare from recess?
Draw your own 4 Square court with chalk and mark a number 1-4 in each square. Each player stands in a square and players bounce the ball in their square and then hit it towards the other squares. The receiving player hits the ball to any other player. The ball must bounce only once in their square. If it bounces a second the then they are "out". Last one standing is the winner.
2. Hop Scotch
Another oldie but goodie. Draw a hopscotch course with chalk and number the box 1-10 (or as long as you want to make it). Toss the piece of chalk or small stone into each box in ascending order. Hop to the box, retrieve the stone, and return.
You can make any rules or challenges you like . . . hop on one foot, hop with both feet together, double hop on each box, or alternate feet.
3. Alphabet Jump
Use your chalk to make 26 circles fairly close together and write the letters of the alphabet in each one. You can jump between circles with both feet, on one foot, alternating feet, or make big circles and do frog jumps as if they were lily pads.
You can jump through the alphabet A-Z, call out letters to go to next, draw letters from a hat, or spell words.
4. Agility Ladder
The first three may have been fun and games, but now we are getting serious. Agility skills can really get the heart pumping and turn your "playtime" into "gym time".
Draw a ladder about 20 feet long divided into 20 squares or ladder rungs. Do a variety of exercises down the ladder and then run back to the start. Variations include high knees, squat jumps, sidestepping, single leg hops, in and outs, and even traveling pushups.
5. 2D Obstacle Course
Our family loves a good obstacle course and sidewalk chalk allows us to make a 2D version. Write out or draw various activities to do up the driveway or along the sidewalk.
Activities could include hop on one foot 20 times, draw a balance beam, twirls, crawl 10 feet, touch your toes, jump 5 times on one spot, do 10 push-ups or jumping jacks, or even throw in a burpee or two. Add some competitions by timing each family member from start to finish.
As a busy mom, the best part about sidewalk chalk . . . you can make a big mess and not even have to clean it up! Next summer storm that blows through will wash the slate clean.
But, I know someone who is reading this really wishes they could do these things with their kids or grandkids. They have pain, stiffness, or balance problems and just can't keep up. If this sounds like you, we have a message we would like you to hear.
Click the link below to stop the frustration of being left behind and fear of getting hurt. This is important information for anyone who wants to be more active in sport or life.