Updated: We Are Not Alone

When he is 37, his wife dies, but he remarries two years later. His new wife and his six children accept his shabby clothes, stained hands, and erratic schedule. One photo of him captures his rumpled weariness after five solid days and nights perfecting an invention. He generates more than 40,000 pages of notes on his research for one invention. Often, an idea leads to a need for improvements on another, causing simultaneous work in several fields, such as iron, glass, rubber, and cement.

When he is 40, he opens his “invention factory”. When part of it burns to the ground and he calmly says, “All of our mistakes have been destroyed . . . we can start our experiments with a clean slate.”

Your son’s patience is one key to his success.

He accumulates honors until he can jokingly say, “I count my medals by the quart.”

On the fiftieth anniversary of his most famous invention, one of his wealthy inventor friends moves the railroad station where he lost his first job into a museum built to honor him.

Who is your famous son?

Answer: Thomas Alva Edison, originator of 1093 patented inventions, among them, the electric light bulb, the motion picture camera, the motion picture projector with sound, and the phonograph; child who failed school at age 7; and home scholar.

Another question: How did Edison feel about being home schooled?

Answer: He said, “My mother was the making of me. She was so true, so sure of me; and I felt I had something to live for, someone I must not disappoint.”

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