Marie Curie Little Thinkers
Marie Skłodowska-Curie was born in Warsaw to parents who were both teachers. Although she was a brilliant student, the University of Warsaw accepted only men, so she continued her education by reading on her own and attending classes in secret. At last, she was able to join her sister in Paris and attend the Sorbonne. Though she found learning French difficult at first, she graduated at the top of her class with a master’s degree in Physics, then got a degree in Mathematics the following year.
It was a lucky thing – for her and for us – that many people realized Marie’s genius and helped her along despite the fact that at in her time, women’s talent and hard work went virtually unacknowledged. She met and married French physicist Pierre Curie, who recognized in her a capable colleague, and her father-in-law took care of their daughter so Marie and Pierre could work during the day.
Marie and Pierre received a joint Nobel Prize in Physics along with Henri Becquerel. Then in 1911 she became the first person to win two Nobel Prizes (the second was in Chemistry) for discovering two new radioactive elements: polonium (named after Marie’s native Poland) and radium. In her acceptance speech, Marie shared the award with her husband, who in 1906 had been killed in an accident.
In 1944, in honor of Marie and Pierre, the team discovering number 96 (Cm) on the Periodic Chart of Elements named the new element curium.
Your Marie Skłodowska-Curie Little Thinker will be approximately 12 inches tall when she’s standing and approximately inspiring no matter what.