when are you ready to teach?

when are you ready to teach?

This is a discussion on when are you ready to teach? within the Basic Gun Handling & Safety forums, part of the General Firearm Discussion category; I have some friends coming over labor day weekend and they expressed interest in going to the range. Father and 14yo son. They have minimal ...

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Thread: when are you ready to teach?

  1. #1
    Member Array DaveInTexas's Avatar
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    when are you ready to teach?

    I have some friends coming over labor day weekend and they expressed interest in going to the range.
    Father and 14yo son. They have minimal experience but have handled pistols a time or two.
    Is it appropriate for a newb, like me, to do basic safety lessons and familiarization with them?
    I suppose a lot of folks just pack up and go to the range, "Here, shoot this", but I would like to first know when the time is right to teach someone else, and if so, how.

    Unless someone points out something that would prevent me from doing this safely, here is what I plan.

    Before we go to the range, we will discuss things in the garage. (I keep all my ammo outside, in the truck, and there is never any in the garage.) I will clear all the weapons just before they come.

    We will talk about the important rules, using examples and demonstration of the rules and basic handling.
    NRA Gun Safety Rules

    I will have them each handle the weapon and demonstrate back to me the important things previously demonstrated ie... all guns are loaded til they check, muzzle awareness, finger off the trigger til about to fire, no handling when people downrange etc.

    We will handle the gun; load the magazine, rack the
    slide, dry fire, reminder that it is ready to go again immediately (mine are all s-a). Remove mag, draw slide back to empty, and check barrel. All this time I will be watching and testing them on the rules taught above.

    Then we will go to the range. Safety goggles and ear protection, appropriate clothing. Range rules.
    One gun out at a time, one shooter at a time for now.
    Handle gun again, as at home, to refresh memory.

    Then, load magazine with ammo and fire at some paper.


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    I always teach the basic gun safety rules and go into major detail about muzzle discipline,I clear a firearm and hand it to them to see how much they retained such as booger hook off trigger muzzle in safe direction etc.I explain that no weapon will be loaded until you are on the firing line ready to shoot etc.I usually spend more time watching and teaching than actually shooting until I am comfortable with the way they handle the weapon.
    "Outside of the killings, Washington has one of the lowest crime rates in the country,"
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  3. #3
    Member Array sheffd's Avatar
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    Duk said it best. Whenever I take a new shooter to the range, I press hard on the muzzle awareness. As my CHL instructor put it, "Don't point the muzzle at anything you don't want to murder!" Using that term brings a whole new meaning to muzzle awareness.

    Then, we go over function of the weapon. How it operates, what to do 'if' it FTF's, FTE's or failure to fire.

    Then we go over the range rules and guidelines. I shoot at an indoor range so YMMV. Things like eye and ear protection, how to set the target distance, policing the area, do's and don'ts of collecting spent brass and so on.

    Once we have those down, we head to the range, if not already there. I usually will choose lanes that are farthest from others if at all possible. And, as Duk stated, I usually do more watching and instructing than shooting.

    And finally, the last thing we do is clean the weapon. I see this as part of the whole picture. I was taught that a clean weapon is a happy weapon. And it makes me feel good knowing that my weapon is happy!

    One of the most important things I want for the new shooter is to have fun while learning. It is the only way to get them back to the range and maybe even into a class.
    Sometimes you find your destiny on the road you chose to avoid it.

  4. #4
    Member Array DaveInTexas's Avatar
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    Is there a youtube out there explaining basic gun handling and safety?

  5. #5
    Distinguished Member Array Rcher's Avatar
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    From your post, it sounds like you have the basic knowledge to get them started safely. Be sure to emphasize all the safety rules and why they are necessary. You can even write up a short quiz of questions for them to answer then discuss each one so they understand better. When I teach classes to young adults or kids, I tape a wood dowel into the end of each gun's muzzle. This helps the handler better understand muzzle control and direction. There was a similar post about this technique within the last week here.

    Also, keep everything on a serious tone. I cant stress this enough. Make sure they understand the destructive capabilities of firing a gun. A bullet cannot be recalled, once it is fired, it will hit something somewhere.

    I will look around and see if I have any safety books from any of my previous classes that I can scan. I've been meaning to do this for years but never seem to find the time.

    **EDIT**

    Here is a video from the NSSF that was produced a while back, it may help you with the 10 commandments of firearm safety. It was designed for hunters but, "safety is safety". Firearm Safety Depends on YOU!
    "Government is not the solution to our problem; government IS the problem". - Ronald Reagan 1981

  6. #6
    Member Array Lt Big C's Avatar
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    It appears that you have the right idea about teaching them gun safety before going to the range. You can never be too safe.

  7. #7
    Member Array tmizzi's Avatar
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    Dave,

    Sounds like you are good to go. I appreciate the fact you have taken the time to think thru the issue.

    Good idea on one shooter and one gun at a time. I would be sure to provide immediate spot correction if necessary to any safety related issues.

  8. #8
    VIP Member Array Paco's Avatar
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    When I teach a new shooter how to use a gun, as many have stated, I teach the safety aspects before they even touch the firearm. I explain about the whats and why. When they are ready to fire I only load a single round at a time for the first few rounds, in the case of my 9 yo daughter and my .40 she hit herself int he head with my rear sights and that could have been bad with more than one round in the mag.

    Good luck and have fun. Let us know how the outing goes. I may be taking my AK to a friends house to teach my 12 yo how to shoot it on Monday.
    "Don't hit a man if you can possibly avoid it; but if you do hit him, put him to sleep." - Theodore Roosevelt

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    http://www.shieldsd.net

  9. #9
    Distinguished Member Array Bunny's Avatar
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    Everything above, but I wouldn't load a full mag at first. I'd let each of them fire one round a few times, then a few rounds a few times, THEN watch them carefully and if you feel like it's safe, let them go ahead and load up the mag.

    And Dave, you sound just fine and ready. There's no "set" time limit on when you're ready to teach. I've only just held my first pistol at the end of March, and I was teaching a few folks in June/July. As long as you can communicate well and in a positive way so that they learn from the experience and can absorb and use what you teach them. And as long as you drill SAFETY SAFETY SAFETY into their heads :) I say go for it! And definitely let us know how it went!
    Don't frisk me, I am the weapon.


    Sig Sauer P239 DAK (9mm)
    NRA Member & Pistol Instructor

    www.vanguardnc.com

  10. #10
    VIP Member Array varob's Avatar
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    Dave, you are never too new to teach basic gun safety. Just remember it's your safety as well as everyone else's. If your friends can't demonstrate basic gun handling safety then you may have to reconsider your trip to the range.
    Don't believe what you hear and only half of what you see!
    -Tony Soprano

  11. #11
    Senior Member Array TucAzRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sheffd View Post
    do's and don'ts of collecting spent brass and so on.
    Ok.. I've shot at a indoor range I think twice in my life.,. (Hey, Arizona is outdoor weather) ... anyway.,. I've never heard of do's or don't's of collecting spent brass?? What is it? You can or you're not suppose to? I never have at a indoor range, but ALWAYS do outdoors,...

  12. #12
    VIP Member Array varob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TucAzRider View Post
    Ok.. I've shot at a indoor range I think twice in my life.,. (Hey, Arizona is outdoor weather) ... anyway.,. I've never heard of do's or don't's of collecting spent brass?? What is it? You can or you're not suppose to? I never have at a indoor range, but ALWAYS do outdoors,...
    Some make you sweep up your brass. Others say you can't sweep beyond the stall in to the target area. Others just don't care.
    Don't believe what you hear and only half of what you see!
    -Tony Soprano

  13. #13
    VIP Member Array nedrgr21's Avatar
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    Another vote on loading one round at a time at first. Appropriate clothing includes a brimmed hat and shirt with a close fitting collar so brass doesn't land down their shirts, stuck in their glasses, or popping them in the head.

  14. #14
    Member Array DaveInTexas's Avatar
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    Great tip on one round at a time, will do that too.

    ps that was my thread on the dowel...I'm going to buy some tomorrow.

  15. #15
    Member Array DaveInTexas's Avatar
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    good video too, might show it.

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