Helping Your Child to Pass the Drivers Tests: Part 2
Getting a first drivers license is an important time in any teenager’s life as it marks a milestone in adolescence. As a part you want to assure that your child is safe when out on the roadways and this can be achieved by being a part of the testing and licensing process. In addition to assisting them in preparation for the vision exam, written tests and driving test you will also have an excellent opportunity to share wisdom and teach safe, defensive driving habits they will carry with them into adulthood.
Once you have assisted your teen in acquiring all of the study material for the written and driving tests, it is time to become an active part of the learning process. Help your child to develop a study plan. If driver’s education was mandatory for your state, you can use the course curriculum as a guide and reinforce what your child learns during the required hours of classroom study. Read through the cheat sheets http://www.dmvcheatsheets.com and DMV handbook in order to fully understand the material and learn what has changed since you went through the licensing process yourself.
As the test questions vary for each state, you will find that some basic similarities exist among each. Cheat sheets and practice tests will cover a variety of important information such as:
- Your state specific traffic laws, rules and regulation found on both the written tests, and evaluated during the driving portion of testing.
- Commonly used traffic signs and how to obey them properly including speed limit, stop and yield signs and school zones.
- Many states also address the seriousness of drinking and driving by asking test questions on the penalties of caught driving under the influence. This portion of study will also give you an opportunity to open dialog about the subject and talk with your child about drinking.
- In addition many states have begun addressing the issue of using electronic devices while driving including cell phones, texting and other devices.
Go over the materials thoroughly together and address any questions your teen may have. Once you have covered the materials, administer practice tests to assure they are retaining the knowledge they need to pass the driving tests. You will not assist your child in receiving a passing score on the first try but also help them to develop good driving practices to be safe on the roadways.
Preparing for the Driving Test
Now that your teenager has successfully passed the vision exam and written tests for the learners permit, it is time to give some behind the wheel wisdom. Driver’s education classes will in most cases only give the new driver 6 hours of road time practice with a licensed instruction so it will be up to you as a parent to secure your child practices the required amount of time required by your state. States vary on the amount of time required but a minimum of 30 hours behind the wheel is mandatory if the teen wishes to take the driving test. Check with your states DMV office or the handbook for the exact amount of required time you will need to fulfill.
It is helpful to generate a parent/teen driving contract that will allow you to set clear rules about practice time and open dialog about driving itself.
Tips for creating safe drivers
For many parents, teaching a teenager to drive for the first time can be an anxious and nerve-racking moment as your child takes the wheel of a car. This is a critical time in the learning process to assist them in learning not only to control a vehicle safely but to reinforce what they have learned in preparation for the final written test and driving exam. It is common for parents to be focuses on avoiding an accident more so that teaching so there are several tips you can follow to make the most of your practice time on the roads.
- Remain calm and patient while teaching. Remember your teen is as nervous as you are so it is important to watch the tone of voice you use while correcting mistakes on the road. Shouting or a panicked tone will increase their fear and inevitably cause an accident.
- Position yourself in the vehicle so that the steering wheel can easily be reached with your left at any time to guide the new driver if necessary.
- Avoid double meanings while instructing. If the teen has completed a maneuver correctly be sure to say “that’s correct” instead of “right” or you will confuse them
- Reinforce traffic laws while driving and remind the teen that the maneuver is law and important for safe driving.
- When practicing a new maneuver, first read through the written materials to assure they understand the process completely. Then take several practice runs with the vehicle before allowing them to complete the maneuver with little or no instruction.
- Use verbal driving- have your teen say out loud the name of the traffic sign you are encountering, verbally announce any obstacles and read limit signs together. A verbal communication established will assist in better using your time together on the roads.
The written tests and driving exams can be difficult for any new driver and with good reason. It is the DMV’s job to assure a license is given only to those new drivers ready to handle the responsibility. Being an active part of your child’s learning process can assist them in passing the drivers license tests and be a safe driver for life.