Albert Einstein at School Summary and Analysis: 2022

The story, Albert Einstein at School, is an extract from The Young Einstein written by Partick Pringle. The story tells us about the troubles Einstein faced in school and about how he defied the conventional teaching method. As a result, he constantly felt like he did not fit in.

The story starts with a young Einstein in his History class, and the teacher questions him about a particular date, to which he admits that memorizing dates was pointless. He believed that he could just flip through the pages and know the dates where he wanted to and did not like mugging up facts.

Albert Einstein at School Summary 

Einstein did not like school for its traditional teaching methods and disliked all the bandwagon forms of education. Clearly, the teachers did not like Einstein a lot and considered him a disgrace, particularly the History teacher. When the incident regarding dates occurs, the teacher is irritated and asks him to leave.

Einstein did not like his home because of the lack of comfort. He did not like school to the point where he thought of never passing the exams to procure the diploma. He liked science and wished to only study that. He could not fathom the reason to study other subjects in which he is not interested.

Einstein was then sent to Munich, where the same story was repeated. He was not particularly interested there and simply spent his father’s money. In an epiphany, he decided to give up school and asked his friend, Yuri, to arrange for a doctor. His plan is to ask the doctor to diagnose him as a lunatic and not fit for school. When he meets the doctor, he talks about his love for mathematics. The headmaster calls him in and reveals some surprising information.

The headmaster tells Einstein that they need him to leave the school because of his behavior, disrupting that environment meant for studying., It was surprising that he was supposed to present the medical report, and the school rusticated him just before that. So, Einstein leaves the school and does not look back. He meets Yuri, who bids him goodbye and wishes him good luck. Even the most genius minds do not have an easy life, and the struggles help shape a human.

Albert Einstein at School Analysis

The narrative begins at Einstein’s history class where he was asked the year in which Prussians defeated the French at Waterloo. Einstein, with utmost candor, said that he did not see a point in learning dates, which amazed Mr. Braun. The teacher was furious and thought Einstein was only wasting his father’s money. He punished Einstein by asking him to stay in school for an extra period. He called him a disgrace, which made Einstein feel miserable. Einstein lived in the poorest areas of Munich and hated the slum violence. He shared his pain with Yuri, who made him feel thankful for having his room. Einstein is doubtful that he would not pass his exams and told Elsa the same, who tried to counsel him. He thought it made no sense for him to stay in Munich. He got an idea and asked Yuri if he knew a doctor. He wanted to get a certificate to show that he has breakdowns and cannot go to school. The doctor understands his pain and gives him what he needs. He gets his reference from Mr. Koch, who admired his brilliance. Before Einstein could give the certificate to the authorities, he was summoned by the headteacher, who expelled him and asked him to leave immediately.

 Albert Einstein at School Character Sketch

  • Albert Einstein- The genius Albert Einstein had to face many challenges during his school days because he did not like the traditional education methods and expressed his opinion about the same. His true intelligence was only recognized by his math teacher.
  • Mr. Braun- He particularly hated Einstein because of his deep belief in the system of education and his hatred for Einstein’s courage to speak against it.
  • Yuri- A good friend to Einstein, he helped him tremendously by arranging for a doctor. He was the only one to bid him farewell.
  • Elsa- She was a cousin to Einstein and advised him to finish school because he would eventually find success by doing that.
  • Dr. Weil- He was a qualified doctor who understands the help Einstein needed and gave him the medical certificate.
  • Mr. Koch- He was the math teacher who understood how intelligent Einstein was and gave him the references he required. 
  •  Head Teacher- The administrator simply took the disciplinary action and requested Einstein to leave the school. 

Albert Einstein at School Theme

The biographical piece, Albert Einstein at School, talks about Einstein’s childhood. It focuses on his disagreements about rote learning with Mr. Braun, his history teacher. Einstein wished to escape from the education system in Munich and decided to get the doctor’s certificate that declared him a lunatic. Only his math teacher truly understood and admired his brilliance. Before he could present the medical certificate to the headmaster, he was asked to leave school because of poor conduct.

The story talks about the challenges even the most brilliant students have to face and disregards the old teaching method. There is no point simply mugging up facts. Students must be taught how to reason and find what they are truly passionate about and help them build careers out of those. Education is not just learning facts but learning what is beyond the textbooks and gain knowledge on various subjects.

Albert Einstein at School Key Points

Albert did not like the orthodox teaching methods and expressed his opinions about the same, which infuriates his history teacher, and berates him ridiculously. Einstein feels miserable because of the incident, and he has to go back and like to the poorest place in Munich. He confides about his fear of not passing exams in Elsa. He gets a medical certificate that declares him unfit for school, but before he could use it, he is expelled. 

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