Flying Lessons in Chicago, Illinois; Denver, Colorado; Seattle and Tacoma, Washington; Madison and Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Vancouver

Flying Lessons, also known as: Flight Training, Flight Lesson, Pilot Training, Pilot’s Training, Pilot’s Lesson, Pilot Lessons, – no matter what you call them, buckle your seatbelt and prepare yourself for a whole lot of fun. Before you begin your flight training you should successfully pass your computer FAA exam. > 95% of our weekend ground school graduates pass on their first attempt.

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Each flight lesson (if appropriately conducted) is composed of seven distinct components:

Preparation
Briefing
Pre-flight
Flight
Post-flight
Debriefing
Review

Preparation

Prior to your flying lessons, your flight instructor may have assigned some preparatory reading, a video to watch, or some exercise to perform prior to arriving at the airport.

Briefing

Before you go to the aircraft, your flight instructor should thoroughly brief you on what will occur during the flying lesson. You should participate in evaluating the current and forecast weather, the mechanical status of the aircraft, and your own physical and mental readiness for the mission. Your flight lesson will be much more productive and efficient if you know the objective standards that will be used to evaluate your performance. You should be prepared to be an active observer of your performance so that you can lead the debriefing (with plenty of help – validation of your observations by your instructor.)

Preflight

The term Pre-flight originates from the Pre-Flight Checklist used by pilots. When you perform the pre-flight inspection of the airplane prior to sitting down in the pilot’s seat (left side) of the cockpit, you begin by grabbing the pre-flight checklist found in the airplane flight manual. As you call-off and examine each item listed on the on the pre-flight checklist, your flight instructor explain what each item is, why it is being inspected and what indications of an anomaly might be detected.

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Flight

This is where the real action is. You will grab the Engine Start checklist and your flight instructor will guide you through the proper sequence to safely start the engine, verify that the mechanical, electrical, navigation and communication systems are operating properly.

Now it’s time for you to activate the microphone on your radio, and request a clearance from the Air Traffic Controller assigned to monitor movement on the airport surface. Your flight instructor will teach you how to sound just like a pro. As you taxi to the runway for take-off, you will continue to monitor the various systems in the airplane, and prior to take-off you will stop before the runway, and check that all systems are functioning properly when the engine is operating with the throttle (accelerator) set for the Pre-Take-off power settings. My favorite words to hear from Air Traffic Control (ATC) are “Cleared for Take-off”. This is when you push the throttle all the way forward and the airplane begins its roll down the runway. As you climb gently away from the ground, the distance you can see may increase 10 – 100 times. Imagine seeing a city 25 - 50 miles away!

Post flight

After your flight lesson, you will inspect the airplane one more time and make sure you record all of the vital information so that the mechanics can keep track of the usage and any maintenance issues are addressed prior to the next flight.  

Debriefing

As you sit with your flight instructor after the flight training session, you will conduct (with your flight instructor’s help) a thorough debriefing session. Your flight instructor will help you evaluate your performance and record your progress in your student pilot training record. The standard Private Pilot Maneuvers and Procedures Student Record that I use contains up to 65 items per flight lesson. After each flight lesson you should know how you rate, and what you will need to accomplish to become a licensed pilot.

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Review

Your flight instructor will tell you what you need to review from the previous lesson and what you need to do to prepare for the next lesson. The adrenaline may still be pumping, so be careful as you drive home (or to the office.)



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