When we are the best teacherOctober 21, 2011 | in The Daily Drive
October 16 to the 22nd was National Teen Driver Safety week. A variety of events were held by a large number of organizations across the country with the primary focus on how we can improve driver safety for our most inexperienced drivers.
The National Teen Driver Safety week was established by Congress in 2007 to bring focus and awareness on the prevention of unnecessary teenage deaths on the road. Nearly 1,000,000 teens in the 11th grade, close to 20% of the total population of High School Juniors, indicated they had been in a motor vehicle accident last year, an alarming statistic given how disproportionate the numbers are to the rest of the driving population.
An area of focus is obviously distracted driving, in particular, texting while driving and the use of Graduated Licensing, to increase the age in which a young adult can obtain the driving privilege and do so without an adult present.
However, there is a critical element in any young drivers experience, the parents. What we do as adults, while our teens are preparing to learn to drive, while they are learning to drive and when they start driving, impact how our teens drive.
Some simple suggestions for being the best drivers ed teacher for your young driver:
1) Be the kind of driver you want your teen to be. The learn from us directly, so obey the speed limit, come to a complete stop, do not accelerate through yellow lights and most importantly, put the phone away. Your teenage learns from your mature driving behavior.
2) Practice driving with your teenager. More often than not, and if you talk with driver education professional instructors, they will tell you the teens they teach have never actually driven with their parents. Take time out of your busy day to spend time riding with your teen. Help them parallel park, educate them on proper maintenance and actually ride with them while they are preparing to take their driving test. The time you invest will be returned with the piece of mind knowing you taught your teen to drive.
3) Make it a habit to know who your teen is riding with and how many teens are in a vehicle. Teens learn a lot from their peers and if you do not know what they are driving like, you might not like the behaviors your teens learn from their peers. The more teens in a vehicle, the more apt they are to take risks and to be distracted, by their peers. Set boundaries related to the times your teen can be in a vehicle and the number of peers they are with.
4) Talk to your teens about the dangers associated with driving, watch the morbid videos, (Faces of Distracted Driving is a great site) and take an online driver safety course together. Be involved in learning together, you might learn something you forgot.
5) Make every week your teens drive, a teen driver safety week. Actively involve yourself in your teens driving experience.
These are just a few tips which hopefully will help your teen be safe and you be proud of the mature driver you have created.← Victim of a Teen Driver | To Drink or Not to Drink…. You be the Judge →