Parenting Tips: Teaching Your Teen to Drive
Most parents express a sense of nervousness and concern at the thought that their child who couldn’t ride a bike without skinning their knee, will soon be alone behind the wheel at 60 or so kilometres per hour – and this a valid reason to worry. Teaching your teenager to drive can be a harrowing experience for all concerned, but this need not be the case; these few simple tips will help to keep you calm, reassured and make the experience as relaxing as possible for you and your soon-to-be independent offspring.
Vehicle Safety Check
While your car may run well enough for you, remember that your teen is not familiar with being behind the wheel of any car. This means that your vehicle’s little quips and quirks – perhaps a slightly squeaky brake pedal, stiff accelerator, or a broken dashboard light –probably don’t give you cause for concern, but these oddities can unnerve an inexperienced driver. It’s a good idea to get a safety check before you start training your teen. New drivers also tend to ride the brake and stop suddenly as they get used to the feel of driving, so you should ensure that your automobile is up for this kind of rough treatment. It’s also not a bad learning experience for your teen to understand how to maintain a vehicle, what sorts of things typically wear out, and the difference between a mechanical quirk like a squeaky pedal, and a safety hazard like threadbare tyres.
Keep It Simple – And Take It Slow
There’s no need to race through the basics. It’s also a good idea to avoid throwing too much information at your teen too soon. There is a lot to learn and you wouldn’t want to miss anything important – like how to stop, or what to do if you get boxed in. In fact, it’s a good idea to step out a learning plan and focus on one specific skill each ‘lesson’; for example, you could spend the first hour going through your ‘pre-drive check’, showing your teenager how to check the indicator lights work, the brakes are okay, etc. Then perhaps your next hour in the car can be spent on learning to brake, stopping distance, etc. Make sure your teen has mastered each area before moving on. Also remind them of the potential consequences of failing to do a certain action or developing a bad habit, such as ending up in an accident and needing the help of a legal professional such as Motor Accident Legal Service .
Learning to drive is an important milestone for your teen, and a big step forward on the road to independence. You’ve got them this far, so trust yourself to take them the rest of the way.
Do you have any tips for teaching teenagers to drive? What’s the one thing you wished someone had taught you when you were learning to drive? Share your wisdom by commenting below.