The Ultimate Guide To Your Homeschool Drivers Education
So, homeschool drivers ed is on your mind.
Do you remember your first car? Can you recall your first road trip? Or the first time you could hang out with friends in your vehicle without your parents watching over?
I’m sure your mind is full of memories of the “good all days” when you were a teen learning to drive.
Driving is one of the essential experiences in youth. It gives teens the autonomy and independence they need in one of the crucial moments of their life.
But as we all know, it’s not only about having a car and having fun; driving is a great responsibility. It’s probably one of the first steps to becoming an adult, and that’s why teenagers must be well prepared.
If you are homeschooling a teen, the time has come! If you’re a parent, I bet you want to be involved in your child’s driver’s education. It may seem like a long and boring process, but it could become a fun journey once you start.
Most parents don’t know where to start regarding driver’s education in the U.S. Should you begin by driving lessons or reviewing the rules first?
This guide will help you to start your driver’s education without a problem. Keep reading!
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What Is Driver’s Education?
Driver’s education is a formal program that prepares new drivers to obtain their permits or driver’s license in the U.S. The course includes a theoretical review of the traffic code or laws and practical lessons to learn how to drive.
Driver education also includes knowing what to do in dangerous conditions such as bad weather, road conditions, or driver impairments.
Some parents opt to hire a private tutor. Still, most homeschool parents know that we can help our children prepare to obtain their driver’s licenses by combining theoretical reviews with instructional videos and online programs.
Although the process of obtaining the first license is generally the same throughout the U.S, there may be some variations depending on the state.
In most states, new drivers teens have to begin a Graduated Drivers License process that includes three stages:
- A Learners Permit
- An Intermediate Permit
- And finally, a Driver’s License
Let’s take a look at the steps in driving education.
Step 1: Know Your State’s Requirements
This will sound very basic, but knowing your state’s laws and rules is important before starting a driver’s education.
For example, the minimum driving age in Connecticut may not be the same as in Arkansas.
The common allowed age to start driving and obtain the Learner’s Permit in the U.S is 15. But some states like Iowa or North Dakota have reduced it to 14, and others, like New York, have raised it to 16.
To prevent a child’s frustration, I strongly recommend you check the rules first.
It’s also essential to check how many classes and driving hours are required or the structure of the test, as many states have a two-part testing process. Most of them offer tests that could help your teen practice for the real deal.
All states have their own Motor Vehicle Department or Bureau, so checking their requirements is mandatory.
Here is a helpful list of Drivers Education requirements by state.
Step 2: Start Driver’s Education and Add It to The Homeschool Curriculum
Now that you know all the requirements and are sure your teen has the proper driving age, it’s time to start driver’s education.
Before your teen can practice and drive a motor vehicle, they must learn the rules and obtain a Learner’s Permit.
Most public high schools have driver’s education courses, but if you’re homeschooling your child, some helpful sources may help you with that.
Drive Safely is an online program that includes online driver’s education classes and courses according to teens’ needs and state requirements.
There are fully online courses starting from $99 and other less expensive options, such as taking a driver’s permit practice test for only $15.
eDriverTraining is also a good option for teens.
The online course provides an Enrollment Certificate and the 24-hour Certificate of Completion. It also includes unlimited practice permit tests for $79.
In this step, it’s crucial to include driver’s education in the homeschool curriculum to give it the importance it needs. That means creating a strict daily schedule to complete the hours of classes required.
Topics to Cover for Drivers Ed
Among the traffic code, the rules of the road, and safety provisions, driver’s education must also include driving privileges and penalties.
Drug and alcohol driving awareness is also important.
Homeschooling driver’s education lets you include other topics that traditional courses don’t usually cover. For example, your kid can learn about car insurance, policies, and collision coverage.
In the United States, your teen must be insured before they can drive.
It’s also the right moment to teach your teen about ethics and responsibility.
Your teen has to understand that driving means that their life and the lives of others are at stake.
We all know that taking care of a vehicle is expensive.
You can include courses about how to save money, how to improve gas mileage, and what it takes to have and maintain a car.
If you or your teen already have a car, you can use it to teach them about the engine and go through the manual to understand how it works.
Once they finish the driver’s course, your child will be ready to take the learner’s permit test in your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles.
Step 3: Get Your Teen Behind the Wheel
The fun starts when your teen has the Learner’s Permit and is ready to drive.
You can hire an instructor or teach your teen by yourself. In many states, the driving permit allows teens to learn with adult-licensed drivers.
Again, checking your state’s requirements, including how many driving lessons hours they need and if they require a professional tutor, is important before taking this step.
I strongly recommend that before giving your child the keys, you start explaining how to make basic maneuvers.
All homeschool parents know that observation is one of the best learning methods.
So, I recommend you take a few days to drive around your neighborhood with your teen as a passenger.
That way, your child could pay attention to how you safely change lanes, enter or exit roadways, turn corners, respect the signs, and park.
Once your teen is ready, they can take the wheel, and you can sit on the passenger’s seat. Again, remember to practice all the rules they have already studied for the written test and drive in allowed locations for student drivers.
And most importantly: remember to be patient.
A driving school could also be great for your teen’s lessons as they are experts in the field. Here is a helpful article on choosing the best driving school for your teen.
Step 4: Get The Driver’s License
The main goal of a driver’s education is getting a driver’s license.
Once your teen is ready, the final step is passing the driver’s test. The test is different in every state, but it generally evaluates how prepared the student is to drive in real life.
It evaluates if the driver:
- Follows and respect the traffic signals
- Knows how to operate the vehicle
- Is prepared to drive in real-life situations
- Can park the car
If you want some tips for passing the exam, this article gives you essential information about the test in every state.
Green Means Go!
Now that you know everything about driver’s education, all you need to do is start.
Then, you will witness your child become an adult!
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