Chalking up the Summer
by Jodi Jill
Over the summer it is not surprising to hear the phrase ‘I am bored’ coming from the mouth of a youngster. Usually there is something they can do within inches of the statement, but if I remember it isn’t as much fun – no matter what it was.
One thing I do remember is we were allowed to draw on the floors at our house. Now it may sound strange, but all the floors in the house we lived in were concrete and we had carpet that covered some floor, but most was bare. So my parents usually had no problem with us covering the floor with drawings we made.
There was usually a box of chalk – my sister and I liked the color sticks the best but the white did well too – that would be in the first drawer of the desk. Our parents only allowed us to use half a stick at a time, but that lasted at least an hour or two before we needed more. Drawing a big line we would continue on the proper side of the line and get drawing. When my brother came along we broke the floor into three pieces, but he always got the smaller piece.
As we got older, we kept drawing, but we also incorporated writing into our chalk time. Writing poetry then including pictures to illustrate the expression was a big deal to us. Another thing my sister and I seriously competed with was word games. We would usually come up with a long word and see how many smaller words could be made using the letters.
During the summer this year I have a box of chalk ready for the bored youngster who comes my direction. Instead of drawing on the floors, I send them out to the driveway and sidewalk. There they can draw until they drop and usually their friends come over to help and discover. The two kids out in the driveway right now seem to be having a competition on who can draw a flower better. This morning I walked over the ocean, a castle and a village. All of which was on the front steps just waiting for my view.
It is enjoyable to see what the kids create and listen to them explain how they see the world through their eyes. There pureness makes you long to be a youngster again yourself and next thing you know you will be drawing on the sidewalk too.