Gaming on a Sidewalk Stencil
Before the modern digital era, before the video games and the Internet turned children into pale, reclusive shadows of the outdoorsy kids of yesteryear, young boys and girls would look outside for their leisure. Eagerly leaving the boring comforts of home, youngsters would charge into the streets with their playmates, looking to join a pick-up game of hopscotch, tag or any number of other activities that provided exercise as well as diversion. Today, it may be a little more difficult to convince your son or daughter to head out and do something that doesn’t involve a bright screen and some buttons. Perhaps this has to do with the fact that it’s the easiest thing to start up a computer game – just flick the switch and click the icon, or slip in the disc, and you’re ready to go. Conversely, a hopscotch game, for example, may require you to pull out some chalk, painstakingly draw up the lines and number them accordingly. And then, if it isn’t already ruined by a couple of games and kids stomping about, it won’t last long in any event, forcing you to keep re-drawing the hopscotch grid for future encounters.
Conversely, you can make your sidewalk hopscotch diagram much more durable, and professional-looking to boot. This can be achieved with a set of plastic stencils designed for a hopscotch game, and some quality paint that will stick to the pavement. Choosing which stencil grade to buy depends on how often you expect to be getting your kids to play hopscotch, or playing with them. If you think you’ll be setting up a lot of games over the next few years, consider picking up a stencil of greater thickness, which will take much longer to wear out. Otherwise, for occasional forays into sidewalk play, pick a lesser grade of stencil, which should do the job adequately.
Since you don’t want to be wasting paint on loose objects, like rocks or dirt that could just get pushed away or kicked about, make sure to clear the area of debris before you lay down the stencil. Bring a broom with you and sweep away the odds and ends. Once the section of pavement is clear, lay down the hopscotch stencil and pull out your paint. Spray the paint evenly, so that the paint does not cake or run due to poor application. Some folks recommend that you use a marking wand to paint on the stencil, which will expedite the task and make it easier. Before you start playing, make sure the paint is completely dry. You wouldn’t want any children accidentally slipping on wet paint, or complaining that they got paint on their favourite shoes.
While a stencil makes a hopscotch game far easier to set up, be mindful of whether the pavement is wet, or if the weather forecast that day is for rain. In either case, you may want to forego the hopscotch marker painting. Don’t fret, there’s always going to be another day for you to make your hopscotch aspirations for your kid come true, as long as you care for your hopscotch stencil properly.