Ten Rules for Parents Supervising a Learner Driver

As well as having driving lessons with professional driving instructors, much of the lessons young learner drivers will have will be in the ‘hot seat’ next to their parents. In the early stages of the learning to drive, the can be a particularly stressful time for learners and their parents. However, it can be made even worse by parents who quickly forget some of the basics when supervising a learner driver. Brought to you by Brisbane’s long established A-Grade Driving School, let this list be your reminder…

1.    Start with lessons on quiet streets or empty car parks where there is no other traffic. The first things to master need to be starting the car, steering and using the brakes, and clutch if applicable. Have more frequent but shorter lessons to start with.

2.    Before attempting a new task, always discuss this first with the learner before and confirm their understanding of what the steps of the manoeuvre are.

3.    Never have a lesson when feeling tired, stressed or emotional. Also be very careful not to shout or criticise as this discourages the learner and can lead them to second guess everything they do. It’s important for learners to be as confident as they can be on the road.

4.    Don’t use the radio or your mobile phone when instructing a learner driver. Not only does it make it harder to teach effectively, it’s distracting and potentially dangerous.

5.    Don’t use the “deep end” or “sink or swim” approach. Learners should gradually step up their tasks on the road to more complex conditions once they have mastered the basics.

6.    Make sure all the directions you give are clear and well in advance if it is to perform a certain turn or merge. Always be as clear as possible with these and if necessary check for understanding.

7.    Make sure that the importance of sticking to the speed limit is always emphasised. This can be a particularly challenging thing for learners to judge and their speed can quickly creep upwards, particularly in 50km/h residential streets

8.    Always give feedback that’s constructive after the lesson and rehash what was learned before the next lesson.

9.    If something is difficult for the learner to get a grasp on switch seats and demonstrate it yourself by breaking the task down. Often parents are so familiar with driving and it has become routine, they forget the different checks and steps involved.

10.     Do not have the learner perform the same or similar drives each time round – even if it is convenient. The aim should always to try driving in different conditions and areas once the learner has mastered more basic driving situations.

FINAL RULE: Keep the logbook and pen handy in the glove box and fill this out at the conclusion of every drive. This will only keeps you on top of your entry’s and make sure no important experience is missed, helping you meet your 100 hours of experience faster.

There are many instances when it might be most suitable to book driving lesson with a professional instructor, especially in the weeks after learner has first gained their learners permit. Another crucial period where the learner will benefit from professional lessons is in the lead up to sitting their practical driving test where the instructor can equip them with all the skills and advice necessary to pass with flying colours.

To book a driving test in Sunnybank, Mount Gravatt, Coopers Plains or other areas of Brisbane, contact A-Grade Driving School today on 1300 885 585.

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