1. Use the correct knife for the task.
2. Always cut on a cutting board.
3. Always cut away from yourself.
4. A dull knife is more dangerous than a sharp one, so always keep your knives sharp.
5. Keep your knife pointed down by your leg when carrying it.
6. Do not attempt to catch a falling knife.
7. Never leave a knife in a sink of water.
A sharpening stone is also called a whetstone. It is used to put an edge on a dull blade. To use, place the heel of the blade against the whetstone at a 20 degree angle. Press down on the blade while pushing it away from you in one long arc, as if to slice off a thin piece of stone. Repeat the procedure on both sides until sharp.
A steel does not sharpen a knife. It is used to straighten the blade after and between sharpenings. To use, place the blade against the steel at a 20 degree angle. Draw the blade along the entire length of the steel. Repeat the procedure on both sides.
Do not wash knives in dishwashers. The blade and the handle can be damaged. Always wash and dry your knives by hand after use.
There are also electric sharpeners and diamond sharpeners.