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Flight Instructing - Telling or Teaching?

by John M. White |

Flight Instructing - Telling or Teaching

Flight Instructing - Telling or Teaching?

Today many who are flight instructing are simply building time to move on to a career in commercial aviation. The question is whether or not they are simply telling the students what to do or are they really teaching the student how to fly. There is a new book out now entitled "Telling Is Not Teaching: The Flight Instructor's Handbook". The author is Mike Thompson is a veteran flight instructor and educator.

Are You Telling or Teaching?

Many Certified Flight Instructors (CFI) see flight instructing as simply a stepping stone to something bigger like flying for the commercial airlines. Even many colleges will use students in their aviation programs for flight instructing other students in the program before they graduate and move on to the air carriers. In their hurry to graduate and move on to their new career are they telling or teaching? The mistake is detrimental to both the student pilots and they aviation industry.

A Career As A Flight Instructor

For some teaching flying can be a very rewarding career. As an example consider Max Trescott the 2008 National Certificated Flight Instructor of the Year. Max is a graduate of Swarthmore College and is a general aviation advocate and thought leader. In addition Max has written two books "Max Trescotts's G1000 Glass Cockpit Handbook" and "Max Trescott's GPS & WAAS IFR Flying Handbook". In this case we can assume that Max Trescott is teaching flying and not telling his students how to fly.

What Choice Will You Make?

So as you become a Certified Flight Instructor which path will you take? Will you become an educator or simply tell your students what they need to know? True teaching requires a deeper relationship between instructor and student pilot. In today's world so much teaching relies on electronic media without human interaction. You can ask questions but will only receive canned answers with the full experience of the author. Teaching flying requires an investment both from the student and instructor alike. It takes time to build a relationship with a student but once established the quality of learning and retention increase dramatically. If you are a flight instructor I encourage you to read this book and give your students the benefit of all you have learned. We need better educated and safer pilots to continue keeping passengers safe and alive. Until next time keep your wings straight and level Hersch! p.s. Please share "Flight Instructing - Telling or Teaching?" with your friends. Thanks!;

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