Learning Through Play

“That is the way to learn the most, that when you are doing something with such enjoyment that you don’t notice that the time passes.”

On November 4. 1915, having just completed his two-page masterpiece, the theory of general relativity, Einstein sent 11-year-old Hans Albert the following letter, found in Posterity: Letters of Great Americans to Their Children


My dear Albert,

Yesterday I received your dear letter and was very happy with it. I was already afraid you wouldn’t write to me at all any more. You told me when I was in Zurich, that it is awkward for you when I come to Zurich. Therefore I think it is better if we get together in a different place, where nobody will interfere with our comfort. I will in any case urge that each year we spend a whole month together, so that you see that you have a father who is fond of you and who loves you. You can also learn many good and beautiful things from me, something another cannot as easily offer you. What I have achieved through such a lot of strenuous work shall not only be there for strangers but especially for my own boys. These days I have completed one of the most beautiful works of my life, when you are bigger, I will tell you about it.

I am very pleased that you find joy with the piano. This and carpentry are in my opinion for your age the best pursuits, better even than school. Because those are things which fit a young person such as you very well. Mainly play the things on the piano which please you, even if the teacher does not assign those. That is the way to learn the most, that when you are doing something with such enjoyment that you don’t notice that the time passes. I am sometimes so wrapped up in my work that I forget about the noon meal. . . .

Be with Tete kissed by your


Regards to Mama.


Einstein Quote

Community Service

It’s that time of year again – summer freedom is almost here, time for lazy summer afternoons, late morning sleep-ins, fireworks and…community service?

For our students at QED, giving back to the community is an integral part of life education. Some students volunteer all year long, while others use their off-time in the summer to focus on activities that benefit their community. Either way, this is often the most enriching, rewarding part of their year.

How to decide upon a worthwhile pursuit? Often, their tutors will help them find activities here in New York City that conform with their interests and talents – like teaching, working with animals, building scenery for summer workshop programs, or visiting the elderly. Other students turn to the New York Cares website to get inspired by their database of worthy activities – things like helping revitalize local libraries, environmental activities, or working to ease hunger.

If you are looking for a way to become more involved with the community this summer or throughout the year, we highly recommend visiting the NY Cares website, here: http://www.newyorkcares.org For those who live outside this metro area, another excellent resource to inspire ideas for community service is Volunteer Match, here: http://www.volunteermatch.org You can enter your zip code and search an extensive database of very worthy activities.

Whatever you decide to do, making it a regular part of your life is guaranteed to enrich you as much, and more, as those whose lives you will touch.