Teen drivers should have to learn stick shift driving (Opinion)
According to AAA, this is the deadliest time on the road for teen drivers. Every year, we hear stories of teens who are simply not ready for the road. Taking chances, not paying attention, driving too fast, we hear it every year.
For me it was about teaching my kids how to drive without all the lectures. Teens tend to tune you out the more that you harp on what they should not be doing. So I taught my kids how to drive on a stick shift Jeep. It's how I learned and I think more kids would benefit from learning this way.
The key to manual transmission is you have no choice but to pay attention to the car. The sound of the engine telling you when to shift, the shaking of the car if you're in a gear that is too high for the speed you're traveling. All of it means that the driver actually has to drive the car.
It's way harder to be distracted when the car will simply not drive itself. Nothing against the fancy cars that are out there but I think for a new driver the key is to force them to pay attention to the vehicle and the drive instead of the 900 other things that teens want to focus on instead.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Spadea. Any opinions expressed are Bill's own. Bill Spadea is on the air weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m., talkin’ Jersey, taking your calls at 1-800-283-1015.