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In a few weeks my family and my brother's family are going tent camping together. All together we've got 3 kids ages 1.5 to 6yrs. I 've thought it would be fun to do a little whittling to give the kids some fun with nature. (I'd be doing the whittling and they'd be the recipients)

I know how to whittle a whistle out of willow branch, but that is about the extent of my whittling knowledge.

I got some inspiration out of these whittled roosters http://lumberjocks.com/projects/287

and some from these whittled bird http://lumberjocks.com/Stevinmarin/blog/14470 (no band saw or stationary sander in the tent though, but I might be able to do a little of that ahead of the trip.) Got me wondering, is poplar easier to whittle than pine?

Does anybody have any recommendations for simple whittling fun that can be done with branches and a pocket knife? I need a crash course so I don't look stupid in front of my Son (he's too young to care) and my nephew and neice? Speed of results would be better than something that would take me all day to knock out one …. I'd need to be able to knock out three and give them all out at the same time so they don't erupt into tantrums.
 

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I used to collect small stomes with my kids and have them make little animals out of them. I never gave my kids a knife until around 8 yrs old. Kidas get bored easy, best to have them make it

Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Animal stones… I like that. Mental note to pack some crayons for coloring them. .... and maybe some glue on eyes.

Yah the kids wouldn't be whittling…more like something for me to dabble with while sitting at the campfire after the kids are in bed.
 

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You might try some simple hiking sticks or maybe spoons or forks out of barnches? Wood spirits might be a hit also (like http://woodtrails.blogspot.com/2010/04/woodspirit-in-poplar-walking-sticks.html ). Poplar is usually nice to carve and most green wood is easy to cut, but pine wouldn't be my choice. I'm told that spoons are pretty popular (http://www.andinia.com/articles/survival_survivalism/a04976.shtml ), but you might want to practice a bit first, to get your speed up! Maybe a simple snake-like figure or something? You could also take some pliers and a coat hanger, to maybe brand some dsigns into a stick? (might need some gloves too!). I would advise you to possibly use a woodcarving or fish-filet glove, to protect your hand. It is quite easy to cut yourself and it sure would take the fun out of camping. Hope this helps!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks Mike. You might be on to something with the walking sticks … I like the ones in your example with the animal tracks on it. .... Might get to making a few of those before we go. I'd rather have them carrying sticks with rounded ends than picking up sticks as they go that may have branches and end up in their eyes.

Woodspirits might be a bit beyond my skills LOL.
 
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