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Albie's First Word: A Tale Inspired by Albert Einstein's Childhood
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Albie's First Word: A Tale Inspired by Albert Einstein's Childhood

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  241 ratings  ·  69 reviews
Here’s a beautiful historical fiction picture book—perfect for the Common Core—that provides a rare glimpse into the early childhood of Albert Einstein, the world’s most famous physicist.

Three-year-old Albie has never said a single word. When his worried mother and father consult a doctor, he advises them to expose little Albie to new things: a trip to the orchestra, an
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published October 28th 2014 by Schwartz & Wade (first published August 1st 2014)
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4.05  · 
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 ·  241 ratings  ·  69 reviews

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Apr 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Albie's First Word by Jacqueline Tourville is about Albert Einsetein's childhood. He had two parents and a sister named Maja. He grew up in the German town of Ulm by the Danube River. The story is about Albie's first few years of life when he had a speech impediment. He did not speak for the first few years of his life, and his parents got worried. They took him to a doctor, and the doctor told him that Albie had to be introduced to new experiences to possibly spark questions, making him speak. ...more
Alinka Rutkowska
Oct 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
"Albie's First Word" by Jacqueline Tourville is a wonderful book which will enrich every child's bookshelf. It invites us to Albert Einstein's childhood showing us his interests and passions and...lack of will to talk! The author shows us the parents' different attempts at convincing their little one to speak. We all know that they succeeded but do you know what Albie's first word was?

This book offers comfort to every parent worried about their child's slower development. After all, that toddler
Nov 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I love this beautiful book for so many reasons that I'm making a list.

1. It's a great and very well-told story. Every word is perfectly chosen.

2. It's based on a true story of a very famous person -- Albert Einstein, at around three years of age.

3. It's a relatable story for kids of preschool and early elementary school age.

4. In this day and age of constant comparisons, and growth and learning charts, it is a great reminder to parents, especially first-time parents, that every child will dev
Kristine Hansen
A work of fiction, this story reflects what very well COULD have happened. As the author states, Albert Einstein started talking very late. How he finally found his voice is something lost in the mists of time. I do wonder what his first words would have been?

I love the doctor's advice - to give him things to ask questions about. This reflection of the kind of wonder Einstein had in the world is captured brilliantly, in pictures that reflect the day and location very well. I like this book even
Nanci Booher
In this beautifully illustrated book we learn about Albert Einstein, "Albie", as a child and how he didn't speak a word. His parents took him to the doctor, who encouraged them to expose him to new places, people and things. I think this is a great story to read to kids in a small group, but probably not a large storytime as you could stop and ask many questions about the story. I think this is a great book to add to my collection at school.
Dec 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
In this work of fiction, Jacqueline Tourville uses the delayed speech of the child Einstein to build a story about how unique experiences and traits can be the beginning of amazing things. In her story, Albie (Albert), inexplicably chooses not to talk even though his younger sister is a chatter box. His parent's take him to a doctor who recommends activities that might encourage a brilliant young child to speak. Nothing works. One night as Albie looks out the window at the night sky and his moth ...more
This story tells a tale of what Albert Einstein's childhood might have been like. The author supposes that "Albie" acted like other boys, racing about, jumping in puddles, fishing. In this story, Albie will not speak, and never has. His sister talks up a storm. The local doctor encourages his parents to take him out to events like the opera and lectures to see if it would encourage Albie to ask questions. Although Albie becomes quite excited at these events, it doesn't work. Then they try taking ...more
Lexi Clark
I gave this book a rating of 3 stars. I gave it this rating because although it's a good story/story line, I feel it could be boring to some children.

The illustrations are very well created and I like the historical pictures this book provides, that's not something children see often in books now. Reading this to students can help them understand someone with an exceptionality and that even though they may not do the things they do like talking, it doesn't make them different or dumb. It's a go
I have read a few stories about Albert Einstein's early taciturn ways, but this one was by far the best! I loved the afterward which declared how much of the information is known fact and how much was done with the writer taking certain liberties. Often times, historical picture or chapter books authors will include information as fact that has not been proven beyond speculation; which makes it, unknowingly to the reader, as simply a work of historical fiction. Also I loved Wynee Evans beautiful ...more
Andrea Mack
Apr 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a fictional book about Albert Einstein who did not develop at the normal rate of children his age. He was behind in speech: he did not speak until he was 3. It goes through his childhood to teach students about what it took for this genius to be.
I gave it 4 stars because it is a fun read. Not all of the depictions are true but most of them are. It can get students thinking about who actually was Albert Einstein.
Rayona Hart-Wilson
This book is a biography of the famous Albert Einstein. Tourville wanted to highlight how young Albert's accomplishments always mystified his family. The book doesn't necessarily say that something in Albert's childhood made him the man he was, but it highlighted the era where he grew up in.

This book is a great read for young readers who are interested in history. There are many different biography's of Albert Einstein, but this one is an easy read for new readers.
Chris Hays
Nov 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a solid story biography guessing about what Albert's early life might have been like. The artwork is probably the best part of this book. The story is short and whimsical which works well as a read aloud for students not ready to delve into heavy biographies.
Taniesha Jo
Jun 26, 2018 rated it liked it
Cute book, nice pictures and fun story for children! I was hooked, honestly. I wanted to know why he didn't talk and what he would say when he did!
Maggie Mattmiller
Mar 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Sweet story with gorgeous illustrations!
Erica Flory
Aug 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Feb 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: pbf-general
fictionalized biography of his childhood
Nov 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book tells the story of the world's most beloved genius, Albert Einstein, as a child with speech delay.

The incredible mind of "Albie," as young Einstein is called in this story, is clear from the moment we meet him in the story. The authors first, through illustrations and narratives, show that Albie can do a number of fun things, like jump in puddles, collect acorns, and ice skate in the winter. The book then states plain and simple, Albie does not speak.

The book goes on to explain all th
Daryl Rothman
Nov 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Emmaline MacBeath
Feb 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is a story based loosely on the childhood of Albert Einstein. He did not speak even though his little sister did. He was otherwise normal. The doctor suggested bringing Albert to new places where he would be encouraged to ask questions. His parents took him to the symphony, to a scientific lecture, and a boat race. Albert enjoyed every experience, but he still did not speak. When his mother came up to tuck Albert in for the night, he was looking up at the stars. He looked at his mom and ask ...more
Sandy Brehl
Many people have heard various facts about the iconic Albert Einstein, including the fact that he didn't begin speaking at the expected developmental age. This book includes an author's note to clarify facts about his childhood while describing the fictional aspects of the story. I found the art to be remarkably effective at setting him in the time, place, and situation (extreme parental concern, loving acceptance, abundant financial resources, etc.). Each page plays with light in various ways t ...more
Oct 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
I absolutely adored this book. It might be about Albert Einstein, it might not (and the author takes great care not to claim that these were actual events), but it is a charming, sweet read.

Young Albie doesn't speak, but he's immensely curious about the world around him. His parents do their best to find stimulating activities for him to do, even consulting a doctor at one point to make sure there is nothing wrong with their son.

In his own time, Albie finds his words.

The illustrations are gorgeo
Dec 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
This book is not really a biography, although I put it on my biography shelf in order to find it later. Rather, it is a book inspired by Einstein's early childhood, a childhood during which he did not speak, but was nevertheless curious about the world around him. The happenings in the story are not true, which is why it is not really a biography, but they could have been - making it more of a fictionalized biography, I guess. But the way in which the story is told will engage children, as they ...more
Christine Turner
"Here's a beautiful historical fiction picture book that provides a rare glimpse into the early childhood of Albert Einstein, the world's most famous physicist. Three-year-old Albie has never said a single word. When his worried mother and father consult a doctor, he advises them to expose little Albie to new things: a trip to the orchestra, an astronomy lecture, a toy boat race in the park. But though Albie dances with excitement at each new experience, he remains silent. Finally, the thoughtfu ...more
Jun 06, 2016 rated it liked it
Albie- otherwise known as Albert Einstein- was a very quiet young boy, not speaking at all until he was 3 years old. His parents were extremely concerned at first, doing everything they could think of to get him to speak. Finally he spoke the word "Why?" and never stopped questioning the world around him.

The illustrations in this book are incredible- they have so much detail in them that each illustration is so real. All of the illustrations matched the text so well and helped make this wonderfu
Feb 20, 2015 added it
Shelves: j-picture-books
A fictionalized account of how Albert Einstein was late in speaking his first words. It's certainly an interesting story -- you wouldn't think that one of the world's foremost geniuses would lag behind in anything. I wasn't crazy about the illustrations; some characters are painted very realistically, while others (mostly children) look sort of surreal and almost grotesque at times. I did like how the endpapers are reproductions of some of Einstein's pages of calculations. I'll pass on this one ...more
:Donna Marie
ALBIE'S FIRST WORD It seems that for the longest time, I am drawn to any book about Albert Einstein. I'm fascinated by the man's brilliance, but not just in scientific ways. In my opinion, he possessed just as much common sense as smarts.

This picture book is another I wish to add to my growing collection (On a Beam of Light Inspired by Einstein's childhood, this book about his unwillingness to speak ends with the one word that sums up his essence. It
Jessica Freeman
Albie's First Word is a story about Albert Einstein and the worry his family faces when he does not speak. This clever story explores the childhood of Einstein while attempting to explain why he became who he became in a very entertaining way. He is depicted as young on the front of the book, but old on the back of the book, which is exciting for readers who may not look at the back of the book until they are done reading. The illustrations are incredible and entertaining. The whole story was es ...more
Valerie Barnhart
Mar 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Albie's First Word: A Tale Inspired by Albert Einstein's Childhood by Jacqueline Tourville. Copyright 2014. Twin Text for Inventors Nonfiction
This fiction tale relates the genius thoughts of Albert Einstein were not something that he felt he had to talk about as a child. Einstein was an observer and a questioner of his world. For a strategy to apply for this text, I would engage students in using a comparison of the Venn Diagram or KWL to help students see a connection between the inventors.
Sara Grochowski
This gorgeously illustrated story about the young Albert Einstein plays on the little known fact that Einstein was a bit of a late bloomer. Tourville introduces readers to Albie, a normal, inquisitive boy who is very loved and happy, but never speaks. Albie's parents are instructed to take Albie to see marvelous things, like the symphony and to hear a brilliant lecturer, with the hope that Albie will be inspired to speak. In the end, it is Albie's unquenchable curiosity that prompts his first wo ...more
Pamela Powell
Wonderful!! A fictionalized account of Albert Einstein's early childhood based on his comments about not speaking until he was at least three years old. While the story is fictionalized, I was very taken with the last line of the Author's Note which is a quote from Einstein, "People like you and me never grow old. We never cease to stand like curious children before the great mystery into which we were born." My hope is to use that line and the story itself to spur my students to curiosity about ...more
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Jacqueline Tourville is the author of ALBIE’S FIRST WORD, a picture book inspired by Albert Einstein’s childhood (Schwartz&Wade, Oct. 2014). She has previously written several books for adults, including BIG, BEAUTIFUL AND PREGNANT (Da Capo), a pregnancy guide named a “Best Consumer Health Book” by the LIBRARY JOURNAL; the outdoor guide series MOON NEW ENGLAND HIKING (Avalon/Moon); and MOON TA ...more