Tesla is opening its service centers in China to kindergarten children to help them learn about electric cars. Perhaps it is hoping they will all become Tesla buyers when they grow up? The efforts by Tesla China recognize that there is a lot of misinformation about electric cars out there. People are genuinely confused about what EVs can and cannot do. The events focus on green transportation and the differences between electric and gas power.
According to the Tesla China blog, “To accelerate changes towards sustainable energy, Tesla is committed to promote the development of electric vehicle technology and, more importantly, to create a green way for people to travel. ‘Tesla experience centers’ throughout the country will carry the functions of promoting public science and electric vehicle technology by often hosting public open day activities.”
This is such a good idea, it’s astonishing other manufacturers have not thought of it. Tesla China thinks its educational programs for young learners could become a model for similar activities in other countries. It is also inviting other groups to apply for education day activity. Tesla’s primary goal is showing the world how to break its fossil fuel habit. Spreading its message to impressionable youngsters is an excellent way to further that goal.
The following paragraph from the blog has been translated by Google, so be a little tolerant if it doesn’t sound like standard English to you. “Using plain language and pictures, the Tesla staff explain to the children the structure of the car. They brief them on the difference between using electricity as an energy source and burning oil. During the presentation, the children learn about electric vehicle power technology and theory.
“By interacting with the kids, it lets them have close contact with electric vehicles. It helps them understand that innovative, green, environmentally friendly electric cars are not far away. The children showed great interest, especially in the Tesla electric car. The smart technology surprised and excited them. The Tesla staff also introduced the children to founder Elon Musk. The story of the development and production of electric vehicles allows the children to appreciate Tesla’s innovation, perseverance, and enterprising spirit.”
When we see the creative ways Tesla is using to educate people about electric cars, it illustrates how clueless companies and government officials are in other parts of the world, especially the United States. Here, we are all supposed to rush out and buy an electric car because the government will give us a tax credit. Yet there is no coordinated, concerted effort to inform the public about the difference between an electric car and a conventional vehicle or why we would want one.
Hey, Chevrolet. Why not take a Volt to a local school and let kids get excited about it? You too, Nissan. Or BMW, or Ford or Volkswagen. We are all supposed to want something we know nothing about. The effort to educate people about electric cars in the US rates somewhere between dismal and pitiful. Governments could do so much but in reality do next to nothing. At this rate, the word about electric cars won’t reach the masses until the seas close over lower Manhattan.