Skype call with Rio Linda School

05 - 01 - 2015

Meeting the engineers of tomorrow

STE13 visited the Rio Linda School during the USA-tour in August 2014. STE13 talked to the kids about the possibilities of technology and of course they showed Stella. The kids built their own mini-Stella; a little replica with one solar-cell on top of it so it could drive in the sun. The kids at the Rio Linda School had a program build around the visit of the Dutch and they welcomed the team as heroes; asking autographs, taking pictures with Stella/STE13 and asking a lot (!!) of questions.

STE13 was so enthusiastic about this visit, that ‘new’ STE15 was very curious to meet these kids. We, STE15, planned a Skype-meeting with the kids on a Wednesday evening. We gathered around a big projection screen and there they were: about 100 curious kids appeared in front of us. Two-hundred little hands waving at us. We could see gigantic drawings of Stella on the walls and posters about solar-energy. We started to introduce ourselves one by one, the kids listened quietly. We were intrigued. I, the only girl of the team, was the last person to introduce myself. As soon as I sat in front of the camera the girls in the classroom started to cheer. All these little Liselottes were waving at me, even more enthusiastic than before. I couldn’t stop smiling.

After we introduced ourselves, we asked the kids if they had some questions for us. And boy, they did. We thought we were dealing with children, but the questions they asked were incredibly clever! We got questions like: ‘What is the hypothesis of the next car?’, ‘What are the biggest challenges for you as a team?’ and ‘How much does the car cost?’. The kids also had some nice ideas about the design. They told us to include a cupholder in the car and to change the color scheme. After we asked them which color we needed to use, I think we heard one hundred kids screaming every existing color, from violet to ‘blue with sparkles’.

At first, we thought we had to arrange this Skype meeting because we hoped to inspire these kids. After the Skype meeting we realized it was the other way around. To see these kids as enthusiastic as they were and eager to learn from projects like Stella, we remembered why we were doing this project in the first place. It isn’t to win the World Solar Challenge (even though that’s verrrry important too (; ), but to develop the car of the future. The car of their future.

– Liselotte Kockelkoren