Monday, September 22, 2008

The winner is......

 “I like Hermoine because she is stubborn and she is cool, I think. She is funny which I appreciate. I like that she doesn’t like Ron, even though I like Ron, too. And I like that she always gets her spells right.”Congratulations Elisabette!!!! Please email us your home address, & we'll have an Owl bring you your new wand!


We had fun reading your comments as they came in; learning which characters you liked & why. Thank you all for taking part in our first official HH drawing.


The HH Mamas are leaving tomorrow for a week-long camping trip, so there shall be no new posts until the weekend. Have a lovely week, & keep up your studies.


Sunday, September 14, 2008

Start of Term Give-Away!

October is nearly here, & for HH that means the start of the new year. The cobwebs have mostly been cleared away, the uniforms have been dug out of the strangest of places, & all is in readiness for another year of magic & learning.

As we promised earlier this summer, we are celebrating the start of term with a fantastic give-away! Our GB (generous benefactor for those just joining us) has donated the beautiful wand you see pictured above. The wand tip lights when flicked, or gently tapped. Repeated motions dim or brighten the glow. You do of course have to say "Lumos" when doing so, but you already knew that. In the off chance that the winner lives deep in the Muggle community, we shall include the necessary batteries to ensure the wand works as it should.

To win you need only leave a comment, telling us who your favorite HP character is, & why. The winner shall be chosen by a random number generator magic, so don't worry about impressing us with your answer. We happen to think all our readers are brilliant anyway.

We want to make sure everyone has a chance to win, so the drawing shall take place on the 22nd of this month - the Autumnal Equinox! Good luck to you all.


Friday, September 5, 2008

Astronomy - Year One

This is a new class for our HH. I'm not sure why it never occurred to us before now to offer it, but there you have it. Pia heads this one, & in her research discovered that this is the one class offered at Hogwarts that is identical to how things are taught in Muggle schools. If any are looking for a class that needs little Potterfication, this is definitely for you.

The kids were excited when they received their Welcome Letters from Prof. Sinistra. Even more thrilling was the last-minute field trip to the Planetarium.  Dressed as Muggles, the children sat transfixed through the entire show. Their only sounds were whispers, oohs, & aaaahs. All three have already asked when we can go to the giant observatory on the hill.

Yesterday they each received a package from Prof. Sinistra. Inside was a folder that contained a lesson: Charting the Stars for Navigation, & a Star Chart. It's brilliant really. She (Pia) has set the chart with one country/city per month. On the 15th of each month, they are to go to this site, follow the directions to get where they need to be, & type in the city/country listed. They then will print out the sky view for that place & time, & fill the information on the chart requested. Didn't I tell you? Brilliant. She is working on getting this in PDF for you.

The web is filled with Astronomy sites, & information. If you click the black box beneath Astronomy Tower, it shall take you to the daily moon phase site that we use. Even the HH Mamas enjoy seeing where the moon is each day, & have the widget on our personal blogs. *note :: Wordpress does not like some widgets, & will mess with their code. If you want to see what it looks like normally, look here.* It's nice to be connected to the world around (or above) us.

Hopefully Astronomy will continue to delight the kids - we'll keep you posted.


Charms & Transfiguration Today (unofficially)

We met unofficially today. It's impossible to take breaks from meeting when classes aren't in session - the kids get quite upset. Usually unofficial days mean that the HH Mamas relax whilst the kids have free-play; in uniform. You can imagine how tempting it is to turn every meeting into a free-play HH day ;-)

Because it didn't take much work to create the DADA Pirate lessons, we actually did semi-formal classes today. Unofficially that is. I (Kat) held a Charms class. For our HH Charms is: languages, story-telling, & things along that line. We did Mad Libs! Yes, you read correctly, Mad Libs. They are great for teaching smaller children nouns, & their ilk. The older kids, & even teens, will benefit from the practice.

If you held your mouse over the link you will have seen we stuck with our DADA theme, & used a Pirate version. We focused their minds even further by telling them that nouns, pl. nouns, body parts, famous people, & that sort had to be things found in the HP books. We highly recommend using Mad Libs; store bought, or self-created. They require you to think, they are simple & portable, & most of all, they get everyone laughing.

After lunch, Shan talked to them about parrot/pirate connection, & had them create their own parrots from printables, & toilet paper tubes. A craft is the perfect thing to follow a lesson. The students minds are buzzing from all they heard, or what they did, & a craft after allows them to chat amongst themselves about it, & just unwind. If you don't have teenies in your classes, we suggest explaining what you want the kids to do, ask if they have any questions, then leave them to it. Poke your head into their craft area every so often, but they'll have more fun without a Professor lurking.

The kids enjoyed the day, & the HH Mamas managed a bit of relaxing - I call that a success!


(Happy birthday Prof. Shan!!!)

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

"Everyone pick their favourite tune,

& off we go!"

Hogwarts, Hogwarts, Hoggy Warty Hogwarts,

Teach us something please,

Whether we be old and bald

Or young with scabby knees,

Our heads could do with filling

With some interesting stuff,

For now they’re bare and full of air,

Dead flies and bits of fluff,

So teach us things worth knowing,

Bring back what we’ve forgot,

Just do your best, we’ll do the rest,

And learn until our brains all rot.


Even though our official HH classes don't begin until next month, we are doing DADA, so thought it only proper to sing the school song. We still shan't hold our drawing for the gorgeous wand until October though, so keep your bloomers on.

How are things going for everyone? The HH kids began receiving Owl Post over the weekend, & have been beside themselves! In addition to DADA activities, Owls from Professors have started arriving; welcoming them back to HH.

We are still wrestling with the Muggle PDF file-creator, so haven't as much for you as we'd hoped. However, if you plan on teaching Dragon Study, there is now a letterhead (From the Desk of Charlie Weasley) that you are welcome to use. As always, try to have your letters reflect the personalities of the Professors who send them. Check the Classrooms for more files every so often. Once the PDF curse has been lifted, there shall be a flood of them for your use.

"Ah, music, a magic beyond all we do here! And now, bedtime. Off you trot!"