Teaching your teen to drive is an important milestone for many parents. Whereas they might be having driver’s ed classes, you can give them the practice they need and it’s a great opportunity to bond. If you’re teaching your teen to drive there are a few important things to consider. You need to keep your cool, be patient at all times, and remember safety first. Here are five tips for teaching your teen to drive.
Don’t lose your cool
Being in the car with an inexperienced driver can be nerve-wracking at the best of times. When it’s your own child, it’s much harder not to worry. Panicking and shouting won’t improve matters, however, so you need to try to manage your nerves. Be patient. It’s normal to make mistakes when you’re first learning to drive. In any case, if you lose your cool then your child is more likely to get upset and agitated themselves.
Teach them about maintenance
If your teen is taking driving lessons they will probably have learned a little about car maintenance. Why not give them a refresher course? Test them on what’s under the hood and see what they already know. Before they start driving, it’s a good idea to teach them routine maintenance. This could be very useful in the event of a breakdown.
Ensure they put safety first
Safety needs to be your first priority. Explain this to your teen as well and how to drive safely. Teach them how to be a defensive driver and how to avoid road rage. Tell them what to do if they do have an accident and that they can report it using the chp incident page. It’s better to be prepared as they will then be calmer on the day if they know what they need to do.
Consider the time of day
If you’re taking an inexperienced driver out it’s vital to be prepared. Plan your route ahead of time and check the traffic and weather warnings. It’s easier driving in daylight and with good weather. Factor in the time of day and the day of the week. Avoid rush hour and Tuesday is reported to be safer than Saturday, for example. It will depend on where you live but ensure you prepare a quiet route to practice driving and avoid the busier times. This will be less stressful. Your teen can tackle the traffic with a professional driving instructor when they’ve had a little more experience.
Lead by example
As a parent, remember that you’re a big inspiration to your children. Even if they don’t like to admit it, they will look up to you and imitate your behavior. If you want your teen to become a safe driver then you’ll have to lead by example. Model good driving behaviors so they can learn from you. Don’t succumb to road rage and respect the traffic laws at all times. If you set a good example by following driving best practices, so will your teen.