Chalk Art Gone Wild

Here's your nightly math! Just 5 quick minutes of number fun for kids and parents at home. Read a cool fun fact, followed by math riddles at different levels so everyone can jump in. Your kids will love you for it.

Chalk Art Gone Wild

July 31, 2013

Have you ever drawn on pavement with chalk? What’s awesome is that you have a ton of space and can draw huge pictures – much bigger than on a piece of paper. You can really go wild, like when over 5,000 kids together drew the world’s largest chalk pavement art. Talk about huge: those little blocks in the corner of the photo are whole buildings! Drawn in Alameda, California in 2008, the record-breaking art was 90,000 feet square and took just 15 hours, thanks to thousands of people pitching in. You could probably draw 20 square feet in an hour if you got on a roll.  Next time you go outside, you just might decide to turn your driveway into your own giant picture – at least until it rains.

Wee ones: If you’re drawing one of the lizard’s giant toes in the picture and 4 friends help you, how many of you are drawing that toe?

Little kids: If you helped out for 3 hours and started at 9 in the morning, at what time did you finally take a break?  Bonus: If that lizard has 4 feet and 4 toes on each foot, how many giant toes did they have to draw?

Big kids: If 5,000 people drew and each one used up 3 whole boxes of chalk, how many boxes were used?  Bonus: The chalk pavement art was 90,000 feet square! If you yourself can draw 100 square feet each day, how many days would it take you to draw the whole thing?




Wee ones: 5 of you.

Little kids: 12 noon.  Bonus: 16 huge toes.

Big kids: 15,000 boxes.  Bonus: 900 days – which is almost 3 years.

And a huge thank-you to Darci-Anna V. for sending in such an awesome math topic!

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About the Author

Laura Overdeck

Laura Overdeck

Laura Bilodeau Overdeck is founder and president of Bedtime Math Foundation. Her goal is to make math as playful for kids as it was for her when she was a child. Her mom had Laura baking while still in diapers, and her dad had her using power tools at a very unsafe age, measuring lengths, widths and angles in the process. Armed with this early love of numbers, Laura went on to get a BA in astrophysics from Princeton University, and an MBA from the Wharton School of Business; she continues to star-gaze today. Laura’s other interests include her three lively children, chocolate, extreme vehicles, and Lego Mindstorms.

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