Does Sidewalk Chalk Work on Chalkboards?

We all are quite familiar with sidewalk chalk and chalkboard chalks. Both of them are a part of our childhood memories. But their using purposes are not the same. Standard chalk looks like slim sticks and comes mostly in white colors, which is excellent as a school supply. And another one is great for outdoor chalk art as you’ll get colorful chalks in it.

However, if the question “Does sidewalk chalk work on chalkboard?” ever pops into your brain, then you are at the right place. The reason is, here I’m going to explain the fact that sidewalk chalks work on a chalkboard or not.

The short answer to your question is, “Yes, it works.” But the long answer is that you should keep in mind some things before using street chalks on the blackboard.

So, stay with me till the end and learn the truth about it. Without any further issues, let’s move on to the main part.

Does Sidewalk Chalk Work on Chalkboards

Is Sidewalk Chalk OK for Chalkboards?

For answering the question, you’ve to know certain things. First of all, if you think about the materials of the chalks, they were primarily made with calcium carbonate. With the passage of time and improved technology, chalk companies are now using calcium sulfate or gypsum. 

Still, some companies use calcium carbonate to make blackboard chalk and plaster of paris for sidewalk chalk. And the problem occurs here. 

Whether it’s calcium sulfate or calcium carbonate, you can use both of these chalks on chalkboards or blackboards, whatever you name it. Erasing these marks is also just a matter of wet wipes.

On the other hand, if you got chalk sticks made of plaster of paris, it wouldn’t be wise to use them on chalkboards. Plaster of paris makes the chalks so hard and gritty.

That’s why it’s perfect for the surface of pavements, sidewalks, hopscotch boards, and other rough surfaces. 

While writing on chalkboards with street chalks, it’ll be seemingly fine. But when you try to remove it, the surface will be scratchy and won’t come out of the mark completely. And you’ll end up with fainted chalk marks on the boards. However, not all of them act similarly.

Now, you may think that how would you know that which one is made of which ingredients? Well, by going through the label and brand’s popularity, you’ll get to know about it. So, hope that you’ve got your answer.

How to Use Sidewalk Chalk on Chalkboard

Using street chalks on chalkboard is pretty simple. Here I’m mentioning the process that I’ve experimented with Crayola Washable Sidewalk Chalk. The process is quite similar to the way you work with regular chalks on blackboards.

First of all, I’ve cleaned the surface with a damp cloth to remove any chalk dust or dirt. Then I simply write with the street chalks on it. And yes, it works similar to the blackboard chalks. 

But when I try to erase it, the result was mesmerizing. All the chalk writings were completely erased with just one wet wipe. Though you may see some fainted ink marks when the board is still damp after erasing, the spots will disappear as soon as the board dries out. 

Another interesting fact I’ve discovered while working with the sidewalk chalk on a chalkboard. The fact is, you can write on the surface with wet chalk, and the result is tremendous. How?

Well, first, you have to get wet the lead of the chalk with a damp cloth. Then write on the board as usual. While writing, you’ll notice that the color is quite faded from the writing of dried chalks. 

But just after waiting for five seconds, you’ll see that the writing is glowing. Wet chalk ink provides more vivid and vibrant colors comparing to dried chalks. And these writings also go away cleanly with wet wipes. 

However, I’ve used a damp cloth for both purposes. You can also use a wet paper towel or wet erasers. 

Lastly, I want to tell clear you one thing that, the chalks I’ve used contain plaster of paris. But the surface I’ve used it on is a quality board, and I think that’s why the result was pretty good.

So, hopefully, you’ll also be able to use sidewalk chalks on chalkboards from now on.

Short Tips

  • Before purchasing, read out the label 
  • Choose the one without plaster of paris (it’ll be the best)
  • Choose a quality chalkboard surface
  • Test the chalk on an inconspicuous spot first
  • Try to clean it with a wet wipe
  • If everything goes fine, then work on the main area
  • Wet chalk provides more vibrant colors


Q: Does Crayola Chalk contain calcium carbonate?

Crayola is a popular brand for children’s crayons. But it also provides two types of chalks – extruded and molded.

Crayola produces extruded chalk that can be used on chalkboards, cardboards, and similar surfaces. These types of chalks contain calcium carbonate. And Crayola Anti-Dust White Chalk is a perfect example of this extruded chalk.

On the other hand, Crayola molded chalk doesn’t contain calcium carbonate. Crayola Sidewalk Chalk is an example of this type, and it contains plaster of paris.

That’s why it’s not recommended for chalkboards, as it can make the surface scratchy. However, I didn’t face any such problem while using it on blackboards.

Q: Can you use chalk markers on the chalkboard?

Liquid chalk markers are mainly produced to use on non-porous surfaces like plastic, glass, ceramics, metals, etc. Mostly on those surfaces that don’t absorb the ink or permit the passage of water or air. 

However, if you think about the traditional chalkboards, they are made with a porous material. And if you notice closely, you’ll see that there are thousands of tiny holes on it.

So, when you use the liquid chalk markers on it, the board will instantly absorb the ink. And you’ll end up with frustration when you try to remove the ink. It won’t go away completely. Instead, it will make the chalkboard surface stained with fainted ink marks. 

So, I don’t suggest it at all to use markers on traditional chalkboards. But knowing the consequences, if you want, you can do any experiments.

Q: What is the best chalk to use on a chalkboard?

It’s actually a bit difficult to take one name from the thousand brands of chalk out there. But if you are really going through a hard time, I suggest choosing Crayola or Sargent Art chalk set. Both of these brands are offering good quality dustless chalks and also at a very reasonable price. 

Though Crayola is the dominating brand, but Sargent Art is also doing good. You can also check our one of the most popular reviews on the best chalks. Hopefully, you’ll get your desired set of chalks.

Final Thoughts

People assume that the sidewalk chalk doesn’t work on chalkboards. But, indeed, you can actually use it on chalkboards.

However, you have to remember that not all of the chalk acts similarly. But some brands offer street chalks made of calcium sulfate or calcium carbonate. You can use them on blackboards without any hesitation.

Hopefully, I’ve cleared out all your confusion through this article. So, if you can follow those particular things, you can use sidewalk chalks on chalkboards too!

Loard Eva

Hi there! I’m Eva, artist, designer, photographer and mom of three little gentlemen altogether. When I’m not playing with my kids, you’ll find me researching and writing for ChooseMarker.

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