Drop it Like it’s Hot: Issue #1

Too Comfortable

Having conducted driver education training for over 25 years, I was very comfortable in my teaching methods. The issue here is “comfortable.” I found myself doing the same things and using the same delivery style, with the same old tricks to get my point across. While listening to a former and current student speaking one day, I heard the former student ask the other “Did he do the card trick with your class yet?

The current student’s response was “Yeah, it was OK.

It was at that moment I realized it was time to change my ways.

We all get in our “groove.” Grooves are all right, as long as they don’t become ruts. In 2019, I challenge you to step away from the tried and true and embark on a quest to research, test and incorporate two new teaching tools you, yourself, have never used before.  Here’s an example:

Closing out the day (7 to 10 min)

Instead of saying, “In closing, …” during your next class, have all students stand and sound off (1, 2, 3, 4, …) and form student groups based on their numbers.

Note: Have the students sound off, so there is an even number of groups, with five to seven participants in each group.

Assign each group of students a different topic from the day’s discussions, and ask students to list their top five most important lesson takeaways.

The Twist

For homework, have each student select one takeaway from their list of five. For groups larger than five, it is OK if a takeaway is used more than once, as long as all the takeaways are used.

Over the next day or so, have each student notate every time they observe another driver not following the rules of the takeaway they selected.


Key Takeaway Drivers are required to stop completely before executing a right turn on red maneuver.
Student Observation Today I witnessed 10 vehicles that didn’t stop completely before executing a right turn on red.
Follow-up discussion Yesterday we discussed that approximately 90% of people do not come to a full stop in residential areas. Did anyone have that as a takeaway? What were the results of your observations?

The Results

After conducting this exercise with my students for the first time, I was pleasantly surprised when they returned, very eager to discuss their findings. I used samples of the students’ findings to open class discussion for the next three classes.

Stay tuned for more 2019 Drop it Like it’s Hot tips.