Even though I have done bits and pieces of this in other threads, I decided to finally put it all together in one post.
Step 1. Harvest a nice fat deer with your bow.
Step 2. Gut it out and hang it. I like to hang them from the hind legs because I find they skin easier for me. How long you hang it depends on hot warm it is where you live.
Step 3. Tell you Son you want to do a pictorial on deer processing and that he "Gets" to process a deer so you can take the pictures. Tell him to cut the hide around the hind legs and start to peel downward.
Step 4. Tell him to do more pulling than using the knife so that he doesn't cut the hide because later, you want to teach him how to stretch that hide on a frame and make rawhide
Step 5. Tell him that if he must use the knife, to pull on the hide and only cut the stretchy membrane that joins the hide to the meat.
Step 6. Before he gets to far along and covers the front legs with the hide he has peeled off the deer, tell him to cut the hide around the front leg joints and to split the hide upwards, towards the brisket.
step 7. Once finished with the front legs, tell him to continue pulling down on the hide while he skins out the neck. When he starts to whine about how hard it is to skin the neck, tell him that the next deer will be easier.
Step 8. Tell him to skin the deer up to the back of the head so as not to waste any of the good neck meat. When he has gone far enough, tell him to cut the neck all the way around until he hits bone.
Step 8. When he asks where the saw is, tell him that he can simply cut between the neck bones to separate the head from the carcass. Remind him that he is getting all sorts of lessons in deer anatomy that will make him a better hunter
Step 9. Give him a break and let him take a few pictures while you show him how you don't need a saw to remove the front legs because you can simply use a knife and cut through the knee joint.
Step 10. Tell him to change the pair of rubber gloves he was wearing to remove the hide and get a fresh pair for working with the meat. Allow him to stand back and enjoy the fruits of his labor.
Step 11. Tell him that he still doesn't need the saw to remove the front shoulders because there is not boney joint and that the whole thing is held together by muscle. Then tell him he gets a second chance for more practice on the other front shoulder.
Take the time to discuss arrow placement as you look at the front shoulder.
Step 12. Remind him how much he enjoys things like jerky and snack sticks so that he does not waste any of the trim meat on the brisket.
Step 13. Tell him all about the best and most tender part of the deer and why it is called: "The Tender Loin" Explain that there are two of them and that he need only make a cut at the top of the tenderloin and that he can remove them by simply pulling them off the side of the rib cage.
Show him what they look like after being removed. Remove any white fat before cooking. I prefer to remove them when I am gutting the deer (or very soon afterwards) If you don't get them out soon, the exposed areas will turn dark red/black due to drying out. If that happens, soak them in cold (ice) water and scrub them lightly to wash away any blood. DO NOT freeze tenderloins!! these are to be enjoyed as soon as possible. Freezing will make them less than tender-loins. Tell him yo cook them until slightly pink in the center with onions and mushrooms.
Step 14. Tell him that next to the tenderloins that the loins are the next best cut of meat on a deer. Remind him that those tasty grilled loin chops that he likes so much come from the back of the deer and that there are two of them. One on each side of the backbone. Tell him to feel for the hip bone and cut just below it and the to run his knife right along the backbone until he hears the tip of the blade clicking as it passes over each rib. He can then massage the loins off the back with very little knife work..
Step 15. With one loin removed, Explain shots taken from high in a treestand and what the bones look like. Show him the short ribs.
Step 16. With both loins removed, lay them out and explain how it's best to leave the loins in large hunks when freezing to avoid freezer burn and that he can slice up steak after he thaws the large pieces. Tell him that leaving the silver skin on the loins will also protect them from freezer burn and it too can be removed before cooking.
Step 17. When he starts to complain about getting all the meat off from between the ribs, remind him again about the summer sausage and breakfast sausage and ask him where he thinks all that meat comes from. Kids love it when you do that.
Again, take the time to discuss anatomy and shot placement until he is thoroughly sick of hearing about it. A tip off will be when he says things like "Yeah! Ok I get it already"
Step 18. With all the meat removed from the front half of the deer, remove the ribs and bag them for the garbage man. this leaves you with the hind quarters.
Tell him that if he really wants to use the saw that this might be a good time.
Step 19. Remove the hind quarters from the gambrel and have him separate the hinds from the pelvis. Then lay all the meat out from him to see. Tell him that this is where the fun part begins. Tell him that he gets to debone the front and hind shoulders.
Quiz him and see if he can tall you that the meat on the far left is the meat off the neck and that the meat in the bowl are the tenderloins and that the long, slender cuts of meat are the two loins. He will be able to tell you that the rest of the the meat are the front and rear legs.