Teaching teenagers how to drive is every parent’s nightmare, and unfortunately, it’s one that comes true for most people. As much as you dread getting on the road with your kids, it’s not fair to keep them from driving as soon as they’re mature enough. Follow these tips to guide your driving lessons.
Start With the Big Picture
Most teens are so excited to get behind the wheel that they forget what’s at stake. Until they’re driving themselves, they don’t realize how fast cars go and how damaging accidents are. Before you get in the car, talk about accident statistics in your area with your children. Explain to them how a Durham car accident attorney protects them if they aren’t at fault during an accident, but if the accident is their liability, they face severe penalties. Tailor this conversation to your children’s ages and anxiety levels. For example, if you have a risk-averse teen with a history of panic attacks, you can probably skip the crash statistics.
Continue With Small Steps
You’re so used to driving that you forget that your children haven’t actually driven before. Unless you’ve been giving them tips for the past few months in preparation, start with the most basic instructions. Teach your teens where the brake and gas pedals are and that they should use their right feet for both, if possible. Go over the basic controls on your car, such as turn signals, lights, and hazards. Once your teens are confident with these essential controls, allow them to drive for the first time in a parking lot or abandoned road to prevent accidents. If you mentally prepare for lots of jolting and excessive braking, the experience will be much better.
Keep these principles in mind as you teach your teens to drive to avoid slipping from instruction mode into road rage.