Stick Pull - Lesson #1
- Bucksaw or axe
Click here to read the Stick Pull story.
To find a spruce or pine tree suitable for making stick pulls.
Teacher supervision is important when students are gathering the materials for the stick pull safety is important when handling a bucksaw or axe.
Explain to the class about the ideal tree to be used in the stick pull. The tree for the stick pull ideally should be 25 centimeters (12 inches) long and have a 2.5 centimeters (1 inch) diameter at the center of the stick pull and tapered to 1 centimeter at each end. I usually take the class out, have them in groups of 4 and have them cut one tree each, approximately 3 to 4 meters (4-5 feet) long and very straight. Remove all branches from the trees so it will be easier to de-bark.
Prior to leaving or during the outdoor excursion I usually tell the students what the stick pull was used for.
The time for this class can vary; however, it does usually take an entire period (1 hour). When the trees are returned to the school (or left outside, depending on weather conditions) I usually set them up on the stage and peel the bark of the tree with the debarker and allow them to dry over night.
I have set up two methods of obtaining the materials for the Snowsnake, Stick Pull and Pole Push. The first, refer to the Outdoor Pursuits; here you take part in an outdoor field trip to gather the proper trees. The second method, you can incorporate the gathering of trees into each individual lesson plan. I have used both ideas with my students and depending on time and resources, both can work.
Stick Pull - Lesson #2
- Palm sander
- Measuring tape
- Woodworkers vice or clamps
- Mitre saw
Creating the stick pull.
When using the tools, the teacher should demonstrate how to use the sander.
Students should now determine with their stick where it is very straight and cut out a 25 centimeter (12 inch) piece that can be used as the stick pull. I usually use the miter saw so I get a very straight cut. I then measure a 2.5 centimeter circle at each end with a marker; this is a reference point for the students to follow. Students can now use the sander and/or sandpaper to taper the stick into the size needed.
This will usually take more than one class and students can often become tired after sanding, so itís a good idea to have groups to share the work. At the end of the class, I give the students some sandpaper and they can take their stick pull home to complete.
Remind students to complete their project at home and return the next PE class with the completed project.
Stick Pull - Lesson #3
- Crisco Oil
- Bristol Board
To learn how to participate in the stick pull.
Students should be careful not to swing the stick pull high as it can hit your opponent.
Prior to the students coming in, I usually have the Bristol board taped to the floor, covering an area approximately 3 meters by 3 meters. If you do not have Bristol board, cardboard can be used.
As students enter I collect their sticks and comment on their work. From there I tell the story of why the stick pull was used. And introduce the video so students can see how the stick pull is done. From there I have students placed in groups of two (try to have students of equal size and strength) and pick from the stick pulls created, the one or two I think are ideal.
I then grease up the stick pulls with the Crisco oil evenly and have 2 students come up to demonstrate. These first groups that participate are more of a learning opportunity rather than actually playing each other. I use this time to go over the rules and how to complete the stick pull skill. Click here for the rules.
Remind students to not shake their hands and put Crisco oil on the floor, use the paper towels provided and place all used towels in the garbage.
Stick Pull - Lesson #4
- Bristol board
- Crisco oil
- Stick pulls
- Garbage cans
- Garbage bags
- Paper towels
To participate in the stick pull
The teacher should emphasis that control and concentration are essential during the event.
As students come into the gym Iíll have a double-round elimination tournament arranged. The stick pull will have two setup areas, one garbage can, paper towels, schedule, a stick pull and Crisco oil. During this class I will often have a student volunteer or another teacher help out with the scoring and/or officiating.
Each stick pull event (match) is the best two out of three games. I usually grease the stick pull, with 2 students standing on the event area. From there students stand into position and I place the stick pull into their hands. On 3, 2, 1 the match begins as I signal pull.
If you have both girls and boys in the class I usually set up 2 pools, one for boys and one for girls. And I always, at the end of all matches, ask the girls if there are any boys they would like to challenge.
Incorporate your students into assisting you during the games and allow them to grease the stick.