Establishing Rules of the Road for Your Teen

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The process of teaching your teenager to drive can be a complicated one, with a lot
of moving parts, so to speak. There are a lot of different facets of the responsible driving
experience, and as a responsible parent you always want to make sure you cover all of
your bases, and then some. You might be lucky, and have your children enrolled in a
school that teaches driver’s education as part of its regular curriculum, or you’ve enrolled
your child in a driver’s ed course outside of school. Either way, each teenager is required
to attend a class, study a book, and receive a certain number of hours’ worth of behind-
the-wheel practice with a certified instructor. These methods aren’t always enough,
however, to get your teenager as used to the road as he or she should be before setting
out to get that license, and that’s what the learner’s permit is for. You’ll have a chance
to drive with your teen for about six months before he or she is eligible for a driver’s
license, and that’s your chance to really make sure your teenager is absolutely familiar
with the rules of the road.

It’s important to keep in mind how stressful driving can be when you’re first doing it.
You know your teen best, so you know his or her tendencies towards nervousness, and
you can always gauge how they’re doing behind the wheel in the moment. Keep an eye
on how your teen is doing, and make sure that your advice or direction isn’t presented
in such a way that startles or otherwise upsets them. This is the last thing you want
to have happen when an inexperienced driver behind the wheel. Rather, make sure
your directions are calm and collected, and go over every rule of the road and proper
practice. Even if it’s something you don’t always do yourself, perhaps teaching your
children to drive is a great way to zero in on some of the finer points of driving etiquette
upon which you might be missing out.

Another great tip is to avoid traffic-heavy or high-stress areas when your teen is
learning how to drive. Crazy inner-city streets and congested freeway interchanges
should be avoided while your youngster gains his or her confidence behind the wheel.
There’s a lot that goes into navigating around the other drivers on the road, so it’s best
to gradually introduce more and more “competition,” as it were. Drive in places that
are increasingly heavier and heavier in terms of traffic so that they can adjust to more
company on the road gradually.

It’s tough to get just about anything done without being able to drive, and it’s
an important part of every teen’s growing-up process. As a parent, you need to
make sure that you’re providing a solid foundation upon which your teen can apply
those skills, so you don’t wind up having to visit or some similar site. It’s easier than
you might think, however, to make sure your teen knows the rules of the road and is one
of the safest drivers around.

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