If your children love to draw or maybe if you are a home schooler you might want to add a chalkboard to one of the walls in your home. I would suggest doing this only after you have taught them not to write on the walls because they may end up getting easily confused and think its ok to write on any wall .. but if this is your plan there are a few ways to do this inexpensively.
The first thing you have to decide is will this be a permanent thing or do you only expect to use it for a short time. If you want to install a permanent chalkboard surface you can use a special type of black paint that accepts chalk and paint it right on your walls.
Your wall should be in good condition and you may want to give it a coat of primer before starting to reduce the absorption of the top coat chalkboard paint.
Start by laying out the area that you want to paint with blue painters tape and then prepare the surrounding areas with plastic or newspaper to reduce splattering to the carpet and other areas of the wall.
You will want to use a fine sand paper to remove all the nibs and as much of the texture as you can. Do this with the tape on the wall but be careful when you get to the taped edge. It is also very important that you remove any gloss if you are painting on gloss or semigloss surfaces.
I would suggest that you do not use brushes to paint the surface and you use a soft medium height nap roller that will apply enough paint to allow it to flow before it drys. You want the paint to flow into the texture of the previous paint so it is flat and easy to draw or write on. Another choice is a foam roller but you will want to get a 12″ foam roller not the smaller edger rollers that many stores carry unless you are painting a very small area.
What if you don’t want a permanent chalkboard?
If you don’t want to permanently paint your walls and that might be a really good idea you can pickup a piece of 1/4″ thick foam core board. It comes in a variety of sizes even larger sizes like 4 feet x 8 feet are available at some drafting supply stores but they can be a handful to get home undamaged.
Because the foam core boards are not normally paint ready you will want to apply primer the paper surface. Use a very light coat so the paper won’t lift. Once it is dry it can be painted with your chalkboard paint.
You can attach it to the wall with long thumbtacks or you can use wood molding around the edges. Double tape is also an option but I don’t suggest you glue it to the wall.
Adding a chalkboard is pretty easy and it might let your kids be creative without the mess. Then again it might just remind them of school so make sure you involve them in the choice to have one or not and if not there are lots of really inexpensive drawing tablets that you can get from professional art supply stores.