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Albert Einstein

Grade: 6 | Year: 2009

He’s the fuzzy haired guy in 1925! He’s the genius who unlocked the secrets of the universe! He’s also a great peacemaker! Good morning teachers and fellow students, I’m going to talk about the amazing Albert Einstein.

Albert Einstein was born in Ulm, Germany on March 14, 1869. He is known as one of the greatest scientists who has ever lived. BUT, he never spoke a word, even when he was three! His parents even thought that there was something wrong with him. He didn’t play soldier or rough and tumble games like the other kids, he just liked to build card towers and daydream!

Can you believe that Einstein failed high school? When he first entered high school in Germany, he didn’t like it a bit! The teachers were too strict. You weren’t allowed to ask questions. You weren’t even allowed to smile! This wasn’t his style. His teachers thought that he was a lazy dog. Albert tried his best to get used to the school but… it didn’t always work. Finally, he was expelled from the German school.

A few years later, Albert tried high school again but this time in Switzerland. To his surprise, the school wasn’t anything like the school in Germany. It was almost the complete opposite compared to the other school. Graduation was a breeze and Albert was allowed to go to college.

One problem appeared after he graduated from college, he couldn’t find a job. He wanted to get a teaching job but after Albert’s lousy attitude toward the teachers, he was rejected. Luckily, his friend got him a job in the Swiss Patent Office.

So, how did Albert become who he is now? When he was five and sick in bed, his father showed him a compass. He found it fascinating that the needle always pointed in one direction, North. Using it in the dark didn’t change it; neither did shaking it or spinning it. Albert later said that the compass made a deep and lasting impression on him. That’s how he became interested in physics and science.

During the German school days, Albert’s uncle showed Albert many books on math and physics. Albert loved math and physics a lot. He even continued to study them with his friends in college. There, he learned to never give up.

Albert’s work has a lot to do with electricity (which he’s really good at) so he was finished long before it was time to go home. That gave him time to work on physics. Albert published articles on E = mc2, the Photoelectric Effect, Special Relativity, and General Relativity. Scientists called these the “secrets of the universe”. His explanation of the Photoelectric Effect won him the Nobel Prize in 1921. Albert’s teachers couldn’t believe that their “lazy dog” of a student did all these things!

What’s relativity? Albert described it this way, “When a man sits with a pretty girl for an hour, it seems like a minute but when he sits on a hot stove for a minute, it’s longer than an hour.” While I described it this way, “When a boy plays video games for an hour, it seems like a minute but when he has detention for a minute, it seems like an hour.”

Albert was a brilliant scientist AND a great peacemaker. After his theory of relativity was proved right, he became so famous that everyone listened to whatever he had to say including peacemaking. Albert had always been committed to promoting peace. Before World War I, he lectured to packed halls and spoke in public about the importance of world peace.

After the Nazis took over Germany, Albert started to say things like, “The Nazis are bad, don’t listen to them” and “They’d take over the world if they could!” The Nazis hated Albert a lot. They even published a book called “100 Authors against Einstein”. Another book showed pictures of all of Nazis’ enemies. Guess what? On the first page was Albert’s picture with “Not Yet Hanged” printed at the bottom. Even though Albert’s life was in danger, he tried to save as many people as he could from the Nazis.

During World War II, Albert was horrified to hear that scientists in Germany were creating an atomic bomb. If the Nazis had such a weapon, they would take over the world! Albert had to do something. Fast! He wrote a letter to the US, encouraging them to create their own atomic bomb. The US dropped two of them on Japan. Albert later reflected on what he did. He called it the greatest mistake of his life.

Albert Einstein died on April 18, 1955. His brain was taken out and studied which may or may not have been Albert’s choice. It isn’t much different from a normal brain except that it was 15% wider on both sides.

Thanks to Albert’s great E = mc2 equation, we have nuclear power, radiation therapy, and gamma ray scans. His explanation of the Photoelectric Effect has led to fluorescent lights, automatic doors, lasers, TV, computers and much more! So the next time you play your video games, thank Einstein for his great work!