Whether you are a seminar planner, teacher, troop leader or other educator, you have come to the right place for primitive skill building supplies and instructional aides. We are a direct-producer of most of our tools and kits. This gives us a unique opportunity to tailor fit groups of supplies to fit your exact needs and class size at the best prices on the market. We also have plenty of experience working with purchasing departments at schools and universities, as well as community and cultural educational centers.
If you are unsure of what tools and stone you will need to host an educational event, you may want to first visit our Flintknapping Buyers Guide, or our GoKnapping Learning Center. From working with educators for the past 10 years we have developed some insight into what it takes to run a successfully flintknapping introduction class. Below is a run through of what we have found helpful.
Teaching and intro to flintknapping:
So you want to introduce others to flintknapping? We have you covered – and this is actually why choose to offer items in such an unique industry. Spreading this once almost lost art to new generations is our core mission. Most educators we deal with use a flintknapping project as a great opportunity to teach how useful a fresh stone flake is, how to re-sharpen an edge that otherwise would be useless, and how many people incorrectly underestimate the skill involved with ancient lithic technology, even though the mastery of tool making is one of the most pivotal advances in the history of humankind.
To host a seminar, you most likely want to cover the basics of how to create stone tools, either having someone guide the group with our introductory video or with a local experienced knapper (most of the time the teacher is learning with the students, and just guides the group). Many of the schools who use our kits are led by teachers with no prior hands-on application of the methods of flintknapping – and that is OK. Visual teaching aids will help substantially, so it is recommended to devote a session to learn the basic methodology before picking up the tools and stone. We are happy to provide our best instructional DVD “Basic Flintknapping Techniques” at no additional cost with every educator order. The DVD is a great introduction to flint knapping that includes information on percussion and pressure techniques, stone heating with campfire and electricity, spalling, and knappable stone types. It covers traditional and modern tools and methods using each and is 63 minutes long.
Essentially for a class you will need some instruction (we just covered that), and a set of tools and some stone for each attendee/student.
First off - To help determine what tools you will need, I suggest our smaller stone so that it will be more pieces per pound, and so that only the medium copper bopper percussion billet is required (larger stone requires larger/multiple billets and is more expensive). Our 'kit mix' of stone fits the bill for size and is a mix of all the different stone types we offer.
The minimum amount of stone we recommend per student is 2 lbs, the more material to practice on the better and this would be the limiting factor concerning how advanced each student can get with the craft. Success really depends on the student, the amount of one-on-one guidance, and the amount of practice material they have. Our Basic Flintknapping Kit comes with 2 lbs of stone, and more stone can be bought separately either by the pound or by the 12 or 20 lb box.
Now that we have the stone covered, the students will need some basic tools to work with. These can be purchased with a kit (like the basic kit that already has 2 lbs of stone), buying the tools individually, or in a tool pack. If you choose the tool pack route, then I recommend adding a medium rubber leg pad. Everyone will also need protective eye-wear and gloves. Modern tools are by far easier for a beginner to get a grasp of the techniques, so we recommend copper boppers and copper tipped flakers. Usually an instructor will also order a set or two of traditional antler and hammerstone tools so that the students can also try their hand at the more labor intensive methods. For more guidance on individual tool selection, please check out our Flintknapping Buyer’s Guide.
Some tips on success: Group size and time for individual help. Even if you have a large class, you can separate them into working groups that help each other and share tools. If you keep the group size small then that is less sets of tools required and more time for one on one guidance. Stress the importance of going slow and learning from each strike and flake. Each motion should be a lesson in itself on what to do, or what not to do. Make this an outside project, or somewhere with very good ventilation so that silica dust is not inhaled.
Basically, the next step to equip a class would be to figure out exactly how many tool sets you would like (group size), and how many pounds of material per student is needed. We would be glad to discuss this with you on the phone if you would like, however email usually works better because we know teachers have such busy schedules. Please email us any questions you may have or your class/event details and we will help fashion a quote to suite your needs. Thank you so much for visiting – Elliot Collins