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Certified Chip Carving Instructor Program


Lesson 5: Start with two-sided chips

Assignment

Complete each item below and email required items to me for assessment at info@mychipcarving.com 

  1. Remove all of the two-sided chips on the EZboard teacher pattern01. Start with the small crescent moon, followed by large crescent moon, small concave, large concave. Do not remove the straight lines at this time.
  2. Remove all of the two-sided chips on the EZboard student pattern01 as explained in step 1.
  3. Remove all of the two-sided chips on the basswood teacher pattern01 as explained in step 1.
    1. Purposely create an “S” in the bottom of one chip to demonstrate why this happens and to help students self-evaluate their work. Circle this “S” bottom chip on your practice board so I can easily see it.
    2. Remove one crescent moon shape that is in line with grain incorrectly and the other correctly. Circle the incorrectly carved chip. Talk out loud as you remove these chips as if you were demonstrating them in class.
  4. Remove all of the two-sided chips on the basswood student pattern01 as explained in step 1.
  5. Take one close up, in focus photograph of the two-sided chips removed on each board (2 photos total) and email them to me.
  6. In the body of your email rate your ABILITY LEVEL (1 lowest – 10 highest) when it comes to carving two-sided chips AND rate your CONFIDENCE LEVEL (1 lowest – 10 highest) when it comes to teaching two-sided chips.

Materials needed:

  • Basswood and EZboard practice boards with applied pattern
  • Cutting Knife, lapboard and no-slip mat

Teacher demo materials

  • Video camera, projector and screen if available

Read pp. 59-60, Chip Carving Essentials

Watch this video: CCCI – Two-Sided Chips (NOTE: I am not using the same pattern as provided in this lesson, but the instruction provided is the same. Just change the order.)

Lesson Information & Review:

Starting your lesson with two-sided chips is a good idea for a couple of reasons.  First, it builds confidence in your students as they get the satisfaction of seeing two-sided chips come out. Second, students start having fun right away at the start of class. Successfully removing two-sided chips gives students a big confidence boost first thing at the start of class, which sets the tone for the rest of your time together. You want as little frustration and confusion as possible when beginning your lesson, which is why I suggest beginning with two-sided chips rather than three-corner chips.

The student pattern has a small RH (right-handed) and LH (left-handed) indicating where students should make their first cut. This will get them started at the correct place on the pattern so RH carvers move from right to left and LH carvers from left to right. As they carve in this direction you should point out to them that moving in this direction makes secondary cuts away from the chip just removed.

Also, students will start one chip at a time! This is the only way they can learn from chip-t0-chip. After chips start coming out crisp and clean with consistent angles, then they can carve two chips at a time, three chips, and eventually an entire row. Point out that carving an entire row of chips by making the first cut on every chip at the same time leads to consistent and efficient carving. But doing so now would lead to a repetition of the same mistake over and over again and not allow them to self-assess each chip (see below).

As you demonstrate and carve near the edge of the board, your hand will hang over the edge. I’ve found that because I’ve carved for so many years that sometimes I’ll forget to tell students to slide an extra board alongside to make a wider base for their hand. Make a note of this and point it out. If you forget it will quickly come back to you when you see your students struggling for maintain good technique as their hand dangles off the edge.

When demonstrating and your chips don’t come out cleanly with two cuts, use this as a teachable moment. Remember, “Your students can’t learn from perfection.” Teach careful cleanup using proper form with light cuts to remove any wood remaining in the bottom of the chip. Remind students not to pry and scrape. Proper form should be used in every cut. You will see all kinds of “techniques” used by your students when doing cleanup. Gently remind them how to hold their knife and teach the entire class to put the knife into each chip as few times as possible.

Throughout the class you should teach your students how to self-assess their work. Demonstrate two-sided chips when the angle of each cut is consistent and a straight line is formed in the bottom of the chip where both cuts meet. Then change the angle and examine the line.

twosided

When demonstrating the crescent moon shaped two-sided chip, emphasize making the inside of the curve cut first. It is not necessary to explain why right away. After they have removed some of these chips and you demonstrate a second time, now you can demonstrate what happens if the outside of the curve cut is taken first when the crescent shape is oriented with the grain. When the chip runs ahead of the cut with the grain on the second cut it will make perfect sense.

Help students as needed with the position of the board and their hand to prepare to make these curved cuts. When students struggle with making a smooth curved cut, it often has to do with not planning ahead to make the curve. Remove the no-slip mat if needed. Angle the board and have them position their hand to allow them to finish the cut in one smooth motion. This will feel unnatural to them at first, but after completing the cut without stopping they will start to get the hang of it.

Teaching straight line will be presented in an upcoming lesson.

Assignment

Complete each item below and email required items to me for assessment at info@mychipcarving.com 

    1. Remove all of the two-sided chips on the EZboard teacher pattern01.
    2. Remove all of the two-sided chips on the EZboard student pattern01.
    3. Remove all of the two-sided chips on the basswood teacher pattern01.
      1. Purposely create an “S” in the bottom of one chip to demonstrate why this happens and to help students self-evaluate their work. Circle this “S” bottom chip on your practice board so I can easily see it.
      2. Remove one crescent moon shape that is in line with grain incorrectly and the other correctly. Circle the incorrectly carved chip. Talk out loud as you remove these chips as if you were demonstrating them in class.
    4. Remove all of the two-sided chips on the basswood student pattern01.
    5. Take one close up, in focus photograph of the two-sided chips removed on each board (2 photos total) and email them to me.
    6. In the body of your email rate your ABILITY LEVEL (1 lowest – 10 highest) when it comes to carving two-sided chips AND rate your CONFIDENCE LEVEL (1 lowest – 10 highest) when it comes to teaching two-sided chips.

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