Learning to drive is a complex, ongoing process requiring responsibility and dedication from both teens and parents. Before teens get their intermediate driver’s licenses, they should practice driving skills with their parents. Parents should continue to supervise teens’ driving under dangerous conditions (e.g., at night, on high-speed roads, and in bad weather) after they have a license. The following tips will help make practice driving safe and manageable for your family.

WHY should teens practice?

Safe driving requires concentration, knowledge, and judgment—much more than just being able to maneuver the vehicle. New drivers need a lot of practice to gain enough experience and confidence to handle daily driving hazards and unexpected situations. Teens will show the greatest improvement in the first 1,000 to 5,000 miles of driving. However, they will continue to show noticeable improvement for up to 20,000 miles.

With WHOM should teens practice?

Teens should practice driving with a licensed adult (e.g., parent) as the only passenger in the vehicle. Both teens and parents should remember three things: (1)Remain calm and focused. (2)Making mistakes is part of the learning experience. (3)Practice driving is serious, but it should also be interesting and engaging.

WHAT should teens practice?

First, become familiar with the vehicle, then practice basic driving skills such as turning, parking, and backing up. Once you are sure your teen understands the basics, practice more complex skills such as changing lanes. Then, gradually allow your teen to practice under more demanding conditions, such as driving at night and on high-speed roads. Always set goals prior to each driving lesson.

WHEN should teens practice?

Practice when you are both ready, are in good moods, and have sufficient time. Practice sessions should be long enough to accomplish the goals, but short enough to avoid fatigue, loss of concentration, and frustration. Practice as often as possible so that your teen can accumulate driving skills.

WHERE should teens practice?

At first, practice away from traffic in low-speed areas like parking lots and neighborhood streets. In the beginning, always practice in daylight and good weather. As your teen’s skills increase, gradually add more complex and difficult situations such as larger roads, higher speed limits, heavier traffic, and night driving.

Here are some helpful resources.


As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides more than 50 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, the not-for-profit, fully tax-paying AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at

AAA Exchange

The AAA Exchange was designed to foster communication between AAA and the 50 million members it represents. It is an extension of AAA’s long history of public service and provides a look into important safety, consumer, automotive and travel issues. Visit for more information.

AAA Foundation

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety is dedicated to saving lives and reducing injuries on the roads. It is a not-for-profit, publicly-supported charitable educational and research organization. Since 1947, the Foundation has funded over 170 research projects designed to discover the causes of traffic crashes, prevent them, and minimize injuries when they do occur. The Foundation uses this research to develop dozens of focused, high-impact educational materials for drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists and other road users. Visit for more information.

American Driver and Traffic Safety Education Association (ADTSEA)

The American Driver and Traffic Safety Education Association (ADTSEA) is the professional association that represents traffic safety educators throughout the United States and abroad. As a national advocate for quality traffic safety education, ADTSEA creates and publishes policies and guidelines for the discipline. ADTSEA conducts conferences, workshops and seminars and provides consultative services. The organization also develops educational materials. Visit for more information.

Driving School Association of the Americas (DSAA)

The DSAA is an international association of driving school owners. From all over the globe educators come to associate with like-minded professionals. Visit for more information. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is an independent, nonprofit, scientific and educational organization dedicated to reducing the losses — deaths, injuries, and property damage — from crashes on the nation’s highways. The Highway Loss Data Institute’s mission is to compute and publish insurance loss results by make and model. Both organizations are wholly supported by auto insurers.Visit for more information.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)

Part of the U.S. Department of Transportation, NHTSA provides a variety of resources critical to motor vehicle and highway safety through staff, products and technical information. Visit for more information. National Institutes of Health (NIH). The Prevention Research Branch of NIH conducts behavioral and observational research to identify determinants of health behavior and test the efficacy and effectiveness of educational, behavioral, and environmental strategies for improving or protecting maternal, child, and adolescent health. The research is conducted within an adolescent development framework and focuses on the influences of individual characteristics, parents, and peers on adolescent health behavior. There are three main areas of ongoing research: young novice drivers, family management of diabetes, and adolescent problem behavior. Visit for more information.

Parent Support:

Teaching Your Teens to Drive: A Partnership for Survival.

Teaching Your Teens to Drive comes complete with a colorfully illustrated 85-page handbook and a liveaction 60-minute DVD that parents can use to help their teens become safe, knowledgeable drivers.

Purchase from AAA – $29.95



Previous post

There is no more story.

Next post

AAA StartSmart #2: Always Using Seat Belts

No Comment

Leave a reply