If you follow me on Instagram (@landeelu) then you know that my oldest son recently turned 15 and subsequently went and got his driver’s permit. I made the comment that I would rather potty train 1000 kids than teach ONE to drive and many of you who have been through this agreed with me! Holy crap it is scary! I forgot how hard it is to get the “touch” on the gas and brakes (so everyone doesn’t get out of the car with a whiplash). I don’t realize how hard it is to judge where a curb is or how to time making a left turn across traffic. After 20+ (ahem) years of driving, all of that is second nature… but to new teen drivers? It’s all new and scary and not at all second nature. It’s not even third or seventh nature. And to the mother sitting in the front seat while her son who she occassionally still sees as a toddler is driving? Scary as H-E-double toothpicks!!
We were driving last week (he needs 50 hours with an adult licensed driver before he can get his license at 16 years old) and he needed to turn left across traffic at a light. It was one of those intersections where it gives the turn lane a green arrow at first and then turns to solid green for you to go whenever you have a chance. Well, there was NO WAY I was having him shoot a gap between cars to turn left so I told him to just wait for the light cycle to go through so he would get his own green arrow. I’m guessing the people behind us were furious as we allowed chance after chance to go by without him turning left! I thought “People need to know that this is an unlicensed PERMIT driver up here! Then they wouldn’t be so frustrated.” I know when I see the marked Driver’s Ed cars going 20 miles an hour and turning their blinker on a mile before they are turning I get it. The people around US have no idea who is driving and why they are driving the way they are.
So, the saying “Necessity is the mother of all invention” came into play and I created some magnetic signs to stick on the back of the car when we are out driving. Yay! I feel SO much better now knowing that people around us can be more careful and alert when they drive behind/beside my son.
If you have a teen driver (or one coming up) or know someone who needs this, this is what you’ll need to make a sign yourself!
- magnetic sheets (I got the adhesive kind because that is all they had at Hobby Lobby but you don’t really need it to be adhesive since you’ll be sticking vinyl on anyway. I got a 1×2 foot roll and cut it into 4.5″ sections so they were 1 foot x 4.5 inches). I wanted to make a few to give to friends. 🙂
- Yellow vinyl
- Black vinyl
- transfer tape
- vinyl cutting machine
STEP ONE: Cut a rectangle (I rounded my corners) out of yellow vinyl the size that you want your sign to be. Apply to magnetic sheet. Trim excess magnetic sheet from edges.
STEP TWO: Cut wording out of black vinyl and apply to yellow rectangle.
STEP THREE: Slap it on the back of your car when you’re taking your teen out driving!
I created three different designs and if you don’t want or don’t have the means to make one I have added them to my Etsy shop HERE!
So, have you ever had to teach teen drivers how to drive? And survived? 🙂 He may have already scratched my husband’s bumper going through the drive thru at Chick-fil-A. Ha! Hey, it was a necessary skill he needed to learn.
FANTASTIC!!! Thank you so much for your generosity in sharing these. I could have used them a few months back when I went through this with my oldest son; but I’ve got two more “future drivers” to train in the coming years, so you can be sure these will be put to good use. Great idea and thanks again. Good luck with your continuing driver’s ed–you’ll make it!
Landee Anderson says
Lori, it’s always good to hear a survival story. 😉 Thanks for the encouragement! Haha!
FABULOUS!!! this is SOOO much better and more noticeable than those paper signs they give you — that don’t show up if you have tinted windows!
Landee Anderson says
They don’t even give us paper signs here in Colorado! But that’s true about the tinted windows. I don’t think anyone will miss this magnetic one. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!
My son has just turned 16 and is ready to get his permit. I am dreading the driving experience but really like the idea of these magnetic signs. They are the “baby on board” caution signs for teens – great idea!
When my kids were learning, I thought why aren’t there stickers/magnetic signs that you can buy letting people know who’s behind the wheel. I never thought to make one myself!!!! Great idea!
Alissa Lines says
I was totally thinking about doing this for my daughter when she was learning to drive! I never got to it, so this is amazing. Great work. My 15 year old thinks I’m going to let him get his permit soon. After going through that once, I’m not sure I’m ready to do it again. Crazy times!
Hazel Owens says
I love this idea! It’s easy for drivers to assume the worst about whatever car is in front of them. Putting a sign on your car to explain that it’s being driven by a teenage driver is a great way for fellow drivers to have some extra patience. A sign is a simple way to remind other drivers of the time that they, too, were learning to drive and to have some understanding. Thanks for the article!