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#1 23-05-11 09:37:32

Bluey
Verified Member
Registered: 04-01-07
Posts: 99

Second check test last week.

Had my second check test last week, wow, what a disaster  :oops:


The TC was one I’ve used only a handful of times, but I know the basic area so decided not to move it. The pupil I chose was based not on his ability but on the fact he’s usually a great lad, lots of good questions and responds well to Q&A. I suffer quite badly with nerves (how I got through p3 I’ll never know   roll) but felt quite good about this, after all, I do it every day.

As we’ve only been up to 40mph before I decided to do some speed work with him, dual carriageways and national speed limit roads, getting him up to 60/70. I know of many instructors who drive the route several times with their pups beforehand, pointing out errors they want them to make and what questions to ask and when, but it’s not something I chose to do. I planned my recap, briefing etc, had a list of some things I was going to point out on the drive and had contingency plans for if any of the areas he sometimes struggles on came up.

Had a chat with the SE beforehand, told him about the pups progress and what was planned for today, "great" he said "lets get started". Had a chat on the stroll down to the car, I was feeling good.

Got in the car and BLANK, what the hell was the recap again, I’ve totally forgotten? How did last lesson go again? Luckily I’d made some notes so managed to bundle through and get him on the move. Started doing some Q&A with him, silence. The talkative, responsive, always inquisitive lad had completely shut in on himself; all I could get was grunts. Even basic questions such as “What’s the next road sign we can see?” were met with a blank. It was all I could do to stop the lesson turning into one where I'm talking at him rather than too him. Considering I’d covered it 10 mins ago, and he’d passed the theory test the day before, the SE’s face was a picture when after asking the pup what is the national speed limit on a dual carriageway he responded “is it 50…er…no…40?  big_smile

The drive wasn’t too bad although on theses normally pretty quiet country lanes we encountered walkers, joggers, cyclists including one who kept swerving into the middle of the road and a slow moving tractor, which I managed to get him past eventually.

Got back to the TC, switched off the engine and to be honest I was so devastated about how the lesson had gone I didn’t even want to do any recap, but did anyway and set the agenda for next time.

SE jumped in the front and asked me how it went, I think my words were f*%&$^g awful, he could see how annoyed and upset I was. In fairness to him he was very sympathetic and I think (or at least I hope) could see that nerves severely affected me. When it came down to the core competencies my fault ID and analysis were spot on but there were a couple I could have dealt with better. One was cutting a few r/h bends, I went through the dangers of doing it, showed him the correct positioning, went back to prompting him on a few but as soon as I let him do one alone he cut it again. SE wanted me to point out a ref point on the window, at that speed I wanted him looking ahead, especially on the bends. I can see the SE’s point though, in hindsight I should have maybe gone to a quieter area and dealt with them using the ref points and then moved back on to the faster roads but time was pushing on and I’d noticed on the way that the dual carriageway back to the TC was down to one lane a stacked up so I had to plan a longer route back  sad So he gave me a grade 4, which I said was very generous of him as I’d have probably graded me a 2.


I’ve had a few days to reflect upon it and try and find some positives, but I can’t. I still don’t believe how much, in the space of a few seconds after getting in the car, the nerves hit me. The DSA want a ‘normal’ lesson but this was anything but my ‘normal’ and I still can’t figure out why. Maybe it’s because on a ‘normal’ lesson my livelihood isn’t threatened if I don’t perform. I’m not claiming to be the worlds best ADI but I know I am good at my job, and I know I am much better than how that hour went. Next time I think I’m just going to take the wife, I’ll spend some time going through every detail of the route, what to say and when. It won’t be a true reflection of my teaching but neither was that, and with the pressure I always put on myself and the way nerves hit me it may be the only way of getting above a 4. I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve had a nervous pup just before a test and I’ve repeated the old football adage “Play the game not the occasion.” I’m just so annoyed I can’t do it myself  :x

I had 2 hours and a newbie to do that evening, my confidence was so badly dented I had my phone in my hand ready to call and cancel, I just felt I wasn’t good enough to be taking their money. The wife talked me out of it. I’m really glad she did as I had two great lessons, back to my normal self and completely different in my usual, relaxed environment. I went to the newbie last and had another great lesson; her words when I dropped her off were “Thanks so much, I’ve learnt more in the last hour with you than I did in the whole 15 hours with my previous instructor. Can I have another lesson tomorrow?”

Apologies for the long post, if you’ve got this far then thank you for your kind attention.  tongue

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23-05-11 09:37:32

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Re: Second check test last week.




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#2 23-05-11 16:34:15

robcooling
Verified Member
From: Nottingham
Registered: 02-04-09
Posts: 1,451
Website

Re: Second check test last week.

Well, if you get a 4 when you're at you're worst then you must be OK!  big_smile

I felt the same about my last one, mind went blank and I froze up completely, I started talking gibberish (literally) - I just can't deal with being watched from the back seat, which is why I'm opting for role play next time!


Rob

http://www.appledriving.co.uk - Driving Lessons in Nottingham

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#3 24-05-11 02:32:18

VIKING
Member
Registered: 17-02-09
Posts: 20

Re: Second check test last week.

Thankyou Bluey for your honest and informative post. Well done for getting a grade under such extreme pressure.

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#4 24-05-11 08:55:25

on board training
Guest

Re: Second check test last week.

Hi Bluey,

Still good to get a grade the way some others are going and word is they are looking for more on a check test now.

Consider training now to lift your game so you can be consistent - even get a camera for the car to review yourself as long as you are open and honest and know what to look for.

Consider doing a VARK questionnaire on yourself to discover your own learning preference.

All helps.

Cheers, Brian

#5 26-05-11 18:27:12

Vhasler
Member
Registered: 23-06-09
Posts: 27

Re: Second check test last week.

Hi
I had my first check test today and chose to do a remedial lesson with the examiner. What u were saying about some instructors telling their pupils what to do and say find it wrong as its not a true reflection at all. Thought i could see what i am capable of without rehearsing anything so glad that i passed. I believe too that in reality with a pupil on my own i am so much better than how i performed today. But at least it was a pass and we not got to do another one for two or three years i got told by my se today. So fingers crossed it will be three and not two. Five years would have been good but at least we got time to get the nerves under control for the next one! I will do a write up soon just trying to stop kicking myself! X


5/7/08 passed adi part 1 - 100/60 (1st attempt)
3/11/08 passed adi part 2 - 2 minors (1st attempt)
15/10/09 passed adi part 3 - 4/4 (first attempt)

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