Home Boy Scouts Camping / Outdoors Totin' Chip Session Outline

Totin' Chip Session Outline Print E-mail

The following information is to be used to help scout leaders teach scouts about the totin' chip. The following is only an outline and is not complete. This outline is intended to be used for two 30 minute sessions.

Objectives - By the end of these sessions you should be able to:
Name the parts of the ax and pass an ax correctly
Know how to sharpen an ax
Know how to setup an ax yard correctly
Know how to use a knife, take care of it properly and sharpen a knife
Use and carry a saw properly

Location - To be done outside if possible

Materials - axe, hatchet, sheath, rope, knives (pocketknives, lock blades), collapsible saw, sharpening file, sharpening stone.

1. Parts of the ax - (Go over parts of the axe throughout session for repitition)

2. Passing - Questions:
Who knows the correct why to hold an ax? (Hold the ax incorrectly and ask the scouts if it is the right way to hold an ax). When the scouts have determined that the way you are holding the ax is incorrect ask: "Why is it unsafe to hold the ax the way I am?" The correct way is to hold it by the axe's shoulder and heel. The ax handle rests along the persons arm and and the ax bit points down.

Why is this a good way to carry an ax? It helps prevent people getting hurt when a person carrying an ax falls. An ax should never be waived in the air and held still when being carried.

Who knows the correct way to pass an ax? Try passing it incorrectly and ask if it is correct. As a scout to come up to you and try passing the ax incorrectly to them. Some ideas of passing the ax incorrectly is passing the ax across your bodies, pass with the ax bit facing you or the scout and pass the ax with the head the wrong side up (When showing the incorrect way to pass the ax NEVER let go of the ax).

The proper way is to pass the ax along the side of the body with the bit facing out and never across the body. If the passer passes the ax with his right hand then the receiver will take the ax with his left hand and vice versa.

What do you say when receiving an ax? Thank you - It lets the passer know you have control of the ax

Important notes:
Keep heavy end (head)down.
Down pass across the body Must say "Thank you" after have ax Bit to the side

Activity: Get in a circle and pass the ax around. Once the ax has been passed to someone they must show the correct way to hold the ax. (If large group divide group in two and have patrol leader take a group to run activity.)

3. Setting up ax yard -
Important notes:
Rope off area. Hold ax by head and move in a circle so you know nothing is around you to get in the way of a swining ax. Hold ax above you to make sure there are no low branches to caught ax while chopping. If some one is in ax yard already, ask permission before you enter.

People must be 10 feet away before you can chop.
Wear long pants and leather boots

What is wrong with wearing sandals or tennis shoes when chopping wood? If the ax slips then the sandals and tennis shoes provide no protection for the feet while leather boots do provide some protection.

Activity: Have the patrol set up an ax yard and then comment on good points and then bad points of their ax yard.

4. Sharpening ax- clamp ax on bench or table, use a file and start at one end and move the file down and across the bit.

5. Show different types and sizes of knifes -good and bad points about each.
Small better for young scouts because they are easier to control.
Serrated blades stay sharp but become hard to sharpen.
Stainless steel knives good because they will not rust.

6. Proper Passing a knife - folding and fixed bladed knives. A folding blade knife should always be passed closed and never across a person. A fixed blade should be passed with the person passing the knife holding the blade(dull end touching palm of hand).

7. Scouts should only carry a folding blade - While there is no official national rule against scouts carrying a fix blade most Boy Scout camps do have a policy of no fixed blades. Older Scouts might remember when the Boy Scouts sold fixed blade knifes which had about four inch blades. Many scouts decided they wanted bigger knifes so they started to bring seven and eight inch knifes. In the interest of safety scout camps forbid them. In most cases only small knife is needed.

8. Opening/closing knife - Have scouts go around opening and closing knife while passing it. Open and close a knife with both hands.

9. Talk about when and where to use a knife - Only during day, not around someone(campfire, middle of walkway). Why is it a bas idea to use a knife at night even if their is a full moon? There is not enough light to be able to see what is being cut.

10. Show how to sharpen a knife on dry stone - 35 - 45 degree angle away from the body.

11. Show proper way to carry saw - on your side similar to the ax. Blade should be covered when carrying and passing saw.

12. Passing a saw - blade facing out and not across the body. Receiver says thank you when he has control of the saw.

Totin Chip CardTotin Chip Card old