"Keep children amused and interested while we’re on lockdown"
Renowned author of the Harry Potter series, JK Rowling, has launched a new website to help engage children during the coronavirus lockdown.
Undeniably, this is a difficult time for everyone, particularly for parents and young children.
This is because parents must try and explain the tough and uncertain situation to their young children who are most likely unable to understand the current virus.
For children, schools have been closed indefinitely which will, in turn, impact their education.
As a result of this closure, parents must homeschool their children with the help of online resources provided by schools and their own initiative.
This is where JK Rowling’s Harry Potter online hub comes into play.
What is Harry Potter At Home?
Taking to Twitter on April 1, 2020, to make the announcement of the new website, JK Rowling shared her excitement.
She explained the purpose behind the new website. She wrote:
“Parents, teachers and carers working to keep children amused and interested while we’re on lockdown might need a bit of magic, so I’m delighted to launch harrypotterathome.com.”
Parents, teachers and carers working to keep children amused and interested while we’re on lockdown might need a bit of magic, so I’m delighted to launch https://t.co/cPg0dZpexB pic.twitter.com/i0ZjTplVoU
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) April 1, 2020
The new online hub was brought to Harry Potter fans via WizardWorld.com as a way of bringing new resources of learning in collaboration with media partners like:
- Pottermore Publishing
The exciting announcement of Harry Potter At Home was made after JK Rowling and The Blair Partnership issued an open licence to teachers.
This permitted teachers to post videos of themselves reciting extracts from the Harry Potter books to their students.
What is included in Harry Potter At Home?
According to the website itself, the online hub has been described as a “hub of information and activities.”
A range of activities including quizzes, word searches, puzzles and much more can be explored. It said:
“Welcome to the Harry Potter At Home hub where you’ll find all the latest magical treats to keep you occupied – including special contributions from Bloomsbury and Scholastic, nifty magical craft videos (teach your friends how to draw a Niffler!), fun articles, quizzes, puzzles and plenty more for first-time readers, as well as those already familiar with the wizarding world.
“We’re basting a Banishing Charm on boredom!”
If you are a first-time reader of Harry Potter books, the website helps readers get acquainted with the wizarding world. It includes links to things like:
- “A handy guide to reading the Harry Potter books for the first time.”
- “The ABCs to Reading for Pleasure.”
- “Ten words you need to know when reading the first Harry Potter book.”
Alternatively, if you are already an avid Harry Potter fan you can test your knowledge with various quizzes.
Not only this. The first book in the series, ‘Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’ has been made available for free throughout April (2020) via Audible.
The first book can also be accessed in eBook format from the OneDrive library service.
It does not stop here. The weekly newsletter promises to provide innovative and fun ideas every Friday.
In addition to this, new ideas and features will be added to the website to further enhance home learning for children.
How do I sign up?
Harry Potter At Home does not require you to sign up to get started – everything is free!
If you wish, you can create a Wizarding World account. This will allow access to features already on the website.
Also, signing up to the weekly newsletter when you register will give you access to fun ideas for your children.
You can find out interesting things like what you Hogwarts House is – Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff or Slytherin.
To register on the website, you must include some personal information.
This includes your date of birth, email address and create a password which must be a minimum of eight characters, contain a number and a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters.
Enter your first and last name. At this stage, you’ll be asked whether you want to opt-in for the weekly newsletter.
After this, you’ll be presented with your ‘wizarding passport’ and will be given the opportunity to discover your Hogwarts House.
This fun-filled website has created a buzz on social media as parents have shared their excitement over the website. One user wrote:
“OMG thank you for this. We are spending our lockdown days reading Harry Potter – currently on book 3.
“My son is 9 and adores them but we have had to stop him reading in bed as he was getting so excited he couldn’t sleep so now we read in the kitchen before bed.”
Another user said: “This site is awesome! Kind of life if Hogwarts offered remote learning.”