We have been having lots of creative fun with our Bigjigs chalkboard lately. Sometimes the simple ideas can have so much benefit and these invitations to create  a still life chalk portrait worked really well. We have a couple of other chalk boards in the house, and love to play with chalk outside during the summer months but I love the convenience of this Bigjigs blackboard. You can just pick it up and draw on it anywhere which allowed me to set up different invitations to create for the boys. They could also take this further, and go take your chalkboard outside to create some landscapes and nature pictures based on what they can see around them.

Simple still life chalk portraits

The boys love to draw, normally from their own imaginations or based on what they can remember. To try something different, I thought about setting up a simple still life invitation to create with some flowers we had in the house. This activity was great for Mr R (3) but would work for any age as children approach it differently based on their own skills and level.

Mr R is working on developing his language at the moment, and this activity gave a great opportunity for him to talk about the colours he saw, and point out things he noticed: “I see blue” “I draw blue” and so on. He did the pictures by himself but I stayed nearby to chat to him and model some more language.

Using observational skills in art

 

He used his colour matching skills to find similar colours in the chalks to the shades he could see on the flowers and to make some marks to represent those. At his age, it’s not always going to look accurate and will not be a masterpiece but giving meaning to the marks that they make is an important developmental milestone for children, and lays the foundation for giving meaning to letters and writing later on.

Giving meaning to mark making - early childhood art with chalk picturesMr R was using normal dry chalk on the chalkboard, but we also tried adding a small bowl of water to experiment with the difference between wet and dry chalk. (The small glass containers you get from GU deserts are the perfect size for holding chalks and water for this!) I had seen some great wet chalk pictures like these fireworks from Crafty Morning but for some reason with the chalks that we were using (ikea brand) and the chalk board, the marks just seemed to come up much more vibrantly with the dry chalk. It’s great to add the bowl of water though so that the child can experiment with both the wet and dry and see which they prefer.

using wet chalk - still life chalk portraitsMr T was also really keen to draw his own still life portrait, but rather than flowers he wanted to use one of his skylander figures as his model.

still life chalk portraits with skylanders

 

He was really absorbed in this and enjoyed making his picture. This might be a good way to engage children who are not normally interested in drawing, by bringing in some of their favourite figures or toys that grab their interest. (although Mr T is always interested – he loves anything creative!)

chalk skylanders picture

Making your own still life pictures with chalk is such a simple activity which needs only a chalkboard, a few sticks of chalk, and any items in your home or garden that the kids want to use as inspiration. It’s also pretty mess free so it’s an ideal activity to keep them busy at home during the winter months.

The Bigjigs chalkboard is actually a magnetic dry wipe whiteboard with shapes on the other side, so there’s double the creative and play potential there. Mr R and Mr T love playing and learning with the magnetic shapes. I’ll share our other chalk art ideas, and some creative ideas for the magnetic white board soon. Look out for those, and you can see the chalkboard / whiteboard here on the Bigjigs site. Current price £ 15.99.

Don’t forget to pin this activity for later!

Invitation to create chalk still life portraits. Simple and mess free art activity for kids

You might also like these:

Ways to play with chalk for kids

Games to play on a chalkboard

Outside chalk activities