Making exploding Sidewalk chalk was on our bucket list as part of the activities we wanted to do this summer. These were easy to make, the kids had just as much fun making them as they did waiting for them to pop, and mixing the colors while painting on the sidewalk after they popped.
Popping Sidewalk Paint
1 cup cornstarch
1 cup vinegar
12 tsp baking soda
- Mix the corn starch and vinegar together. It’s important to mix it quickly, as it begins to stick together and waiting makes it difficult to mix
- Divide the mixture into four Ziploc bags
- Add food coloring to each bag (8-10 drops) – We used Neon
- Seal the bag and prepare to bring the bag outside
- When you get outside, add the baking soda ball into the ziploc bag leaving as little air as possible inside of the bag, I found it easiest to quickly add the 3 tsp of baking soda per bag, close it and swish it around to dissolve the soda
- Wait, the bags will pop with color exploding on the sidewalk.
What did we think?
Though the bags didn’t really explode as I thought they were going to, they definitely popped, hence the reason we’re calling this fun outdoor summer activity Popping Sidewalk Paint. It was about twenty minutes of fun and a new way to learn about reactions and a new and fun way to paint the sidewalk outside with something that will wash off in the rain (or with the hose) and was easy and cheap to make. Baking soda and corn starch were both under a dollar – making this a very frugal activity.
After we were finished and left with sidewalk paint, the kids enjoyed playing with the baking soda and vinegar to make tiny explosions in the paint on the sidewalk.
Just check out some of the fun the kids had playing with the popping sidewalk chalk paint: