Feather sticks and spoons are both great projects for practicing knife skills and building wrist and grip strength. Feather sticks in particular are great for practicing controlled cutting. A good feather stick requires a strong grip on the knife, one that allows for cutting long strips of wood at a consistent depth. For a good article discussing feather sticks, check out this one by Jim Dillard over at Ben's Backwoods. I disagree with is assertion that a highly polished edge is essential. I make what I consider to be perfectly adequate feather sticks with an edge straight off of a carborundum pocket stone. I honestly can't tell much, if any, performance difference in wood carving between that and my more highly polished and stropped edges.
Spoons are good for practicing a wide range of cuts, and getting even more comfortable with your knife. Starting with large, powerful cuts for initial shaping, then ending with fine, controlled cuts.
(This is two feather sticks)