Tuesday 2nd June
This may not make sense at first, but if you bear with me, hopefully it will mean something by the end…
When I was at primary school I enjoyed reading books about explorers. This was one of the books that I had:
I think that there was something very British about the whole story – Scott wanted to be the first person to get to the South Pole, but he came second (the way I remember it, he lost because the Norwegians cheated and ate the dogs that pulled their sleighs. Being British, Scott thought eating a dog was like eating an aunt). I knew that I wanted to be the first to get somewhere or the first to discover something, but as I got older, I realised that a) I wasn’t very intrepid and b) everywhere seemed to have been explored already.
Now that I am older and wiser, I can see that I was wrong. In my life time twelve significant new discoveries have been made and added to one of the most important maps that we have:
One of the greatest explorers to have lived was this scientist:
Do you know who she is? She discovered two elements during her life time. This is the equivalent of finding two continents – she could be said to be like Christopher Columbus and Captain Cook combined. In fact, many people might argue that her achievement was more impressive, as Columbus and Cook actually discovered land that already had people living on it. This inspirational scientist was the first person to ever observe polonium and radium.
Many explorers had heroic deaths. Captain Cook was stabbed by natives of Hawaii on one of his many adventures:
The inspirational scientist also died because of her work. She took great risks working with radioactive substances, and this took its toll, leaving her with an auto-immune disease that eventually killed her. Her work, in turn, has been one of the biggest weapons in the fight against cancer that we have.
To be a great explorer now, to become famous for changing the course of the human race, you need one of these and you need to know how to use it:
You could be starting your journey today, and one day the whole world might know your name. Good luck!
I’ve told you all before that I want at least one Bishop Luffa student to become Prime Minister. I would also like at least one of you to discover an element that can be added to the Periodic Table. It would be useful if someone else could become a Supreme Court Judge.
The last word, as always to Ms Castle: