The Middle School will soon be transformed into Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, thanks to the passion and ingenuity of a Grade 8 student.
Jenna S. approached teacher-librarian Ms. Sarah Craig in the fall to pitch the idea of creating a Harry Potter-themed Exploratory course this year.
“Exploratory is one of those times where it’s student choice, and I guess I wanted to take the idea of student choice and make it very student choice. I’m a huge Harry Potter fan, and we have so many active readers that get involved with events in the library here, so I thought it would be really popular and people would be very enthusiastic about it,” Jenna says.
“I said, ‘Absolutely!’ because I love Harry Potter, too,” Sarah adds. “I love the stories and absolutely anything to do with helping promote literacy in the school, so I was all for it.”
Jenna has spent the last couple of months creating a detailed lesson plan to build up to the Exploratory class, which begins next week, and to help bring the magic of Harry Potter to life.
Students who participate in this student-planned Exploratory will play trivia games based on the books, take potions classes, make and drink butterbeer, get placed (by the sorting hat) into one of the four Hogwarts Houses, make magic wands, use green-screen technology to be inserted into scenes from the movies and much more!
“I’m excited to play Quidditch,” Jenna says. “It’s Muggle Quidditch, so it’s hula hoops on poles, and dodgeballs and you run around with a broomstick between your legs. … I’m hoping people will be as genuinely excited about this as we are. It’s actually through our passion for reading and our passion for Harry Potter that we’ve come up with this. It’s just awesome how we get to take the inspiration and the magic from these books and we are going to do our best to put it into this world and have fun with it.”
Sarah praises Jenna for spearheading the idea and for being so creative in making the Exploratory as fun, innovative and engaging as possible.
“I’m so excited to go further into the books with people who really love them like I do. We can geek out on it,” Sarah says.
And as for Jenna’s justification for organizing a Harry Potter Exploratory: “If you think about it, we have math class, we have science class, we have French class… and Harry Potter for the next 11 weeks is a class! All these dreams we’ve had of being in the Harry Potter world will never come true, but this is as close as we’re going to get, so I say take it and make it awesome!”
(photo by Kyle Slavin)