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SAVY 2019: Session 4, Day 4 – Unpacking the Magic of Harry Potter (Holland W.) (Rising 5th/6th)

Posted by on Thursday, July 11, 2019 in Grade 5, Grade 6, SAVY.

Good afternoon magics and muggles!
Wow! I cannot believe it is already Thursday. Our time together in the Potter-verse is coming to an end. We had another amazing day!
For our warm up, the students tried their hand at potions.  They designed their own potions with names and ingredients.  Ask your child what kind of potion they would brew.
For one of our big topics this morning, we discussed Harry Potter and censorship.  We watched a clip ( of Dav Pilkey commenting on banning books.  We discussed why books get banned, the rights of readers to access books, and how we can find a balance with censorship. We had a quick debate about whether books should be banned from public libraries or not, and the students brought up a lot of excellent points on both sides.
Next, we moved on to Harry Potter appropriation. Appropriation is to take something for one’s own use, and this happens frequently with Harry Potter.  It appropriates things and it is appropriated.  Elements of Harry Potter appear in other books, sayings or quotes, adding “muggle” to the dictionary, and many others. Some ways Harry Potter has appropriated other things include ideas from X-Men, Lord of the Rings, Star Trek, the concept of alchemy, and King Arthur, among others.  This led into the conversation about the fine line between borrowing and stealing.  We watched a clip ( about borrowing and sharing ideas.  This yielded an interesting debate about copyright laws and whether or not they should exist.  To better understand the concept as a whole, we discussed vocabulary words such as parody, satire, fanfiction, canon, and shipping.  And what about things such as songs?  We listened to some songs by Harry and the Potters, who make a living from playing songs based on Harry Potter.
We had a discussion debating if people should be able to profit from author’s intellectual property.  Part of this is parody and fanfiction.  We watched “Dark Lord Funk” ( as an example of a Harry Potter parody.  I highly recommend this song!  Students then got a chance to write fanfiction or a song parody to display their creative ability as applied to Harry Potter.  After having some time to work, the kids presented their work at Harry Potter Open Mic for their peers.  They had some AMAZING parodies and fanfiction.
After another rousing round of trivia, we discussed 4 steps to data analysis.  These include becoming familiar with the data, reviewing their question and assigning a “code” to organize it, identifying patterns, and interpreting the data and attaching significance.  The students had time to go back to their data and analyze it and begin to put it into presentations.  We are so excited to hear all about their research tomorrow!
Tomorrow we will be having our very own SAVY Potter-Con!  Encourage your students to wear their best Harry Potter swag.  They will be presenting their findings to their peers and to parents at open house.
Can’t wait to meet you all tomorrow!

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