Not trying to say you're inexperienced, I guess I was keeping a larger audience in mind; sorry for the mixup. I hear ya on the pancakes, but at least you know not to eat them when they're burnt. I think it's worse when you get your cakes just the way you like em, and that first big bite has a little extra juice to it.
Only problem with smoke method its you're teaching them to cook at too high of heat. One of the biggest mistakes with those new to cast iron. Problem when you run that hot is it takes awhile to cool pan down unless you're putting something super cold into pan, and even then the properties of cast iron will negate it anyways. I actually teach cast iron cooking and do demos as well. I've found that's the biggest way most leave using their pans.