Use some or all of these activities to help get your participants into the mood for your Harry Potter adventure.
1. House questionnaire.
Create a questionnaire with four answers to each question to determine which house the kids belong. The questions should be given a “more like me” choice. The questionnaire may hint at the activities that will be done. This will give everyone something to do while waiting to start. Those who are late will be sorted according to spots left.
2. Sorting hat.
Look through your Halloween decorations for an old witch’s hat or find a very unusual hat to use for a sorting hat. Explore ways to make your sorting hat ceremony magical.
NOTE: If you didn’t have a chance to check everyone’s hair for lice DO NOT put the hat on participant’s heads. Hold it over their head instead.
3. House leaders.
Each house will need to have the required number of adults. However, the heads of house and prefects can help lead activities so the adult’s roles will be less obvious. Find teenage volunteers to fill these positions or have the house members choose from their group. Be sure to let the leaders know what will be expected of them.
4. House cup.
The House Cup award can be tied into participation in classes, winning challenges, behavior or any rules you set forth at the beginning of your event. Be consistent in awarding points. Provide a clear list of ways to earn and lose points.
Classes can be held by year or by your available location and materials. See the Enrichment Project supplement, SUPP_HPHA_Classes.pdf, on classes for a listing of which classes are held each year, a description of the classes and some activity ideas.
6. Magical sheets.
To help learn about their magical world, younger kids may receive coloring sheets. Older kids may receive information sheets with areas to record the items they learn about including:
- Magical creatures
- Magical items
- Famous people at the event
- Maps to areas
These sheets, when completed, should be placed in each kid’s notebook, folder or tote. You could also collect the sheets to create a keepsake book at your event.
7. Owl post.
Under drawings, photos or stuffed owls, place a clothespin to attach notes, lost items, mail from home, etc. Make one owl specific to each group or house. Make this a daily activity with announcements from your director / leader.
8. Magical skits.
Each house gets points for the skits they perform for the entire group. Magical inclusions count as extra points. You may wish to let your participants know beforehand so they can find skits to bring to your event.
9. Magical creatures.
Ask a nature center, zoo, etc. to bring animals that were in the movies such as owls and snakes. Give a presentation about them to your participants.
10. Magical creature hunt.
Place “magical creatures” for the kids to find on a scavenger-type hunt. Give them maps to mark with an X (like the Marauder’s Map) to show where the creatures are hiding.
Alternatively, instead of finding magical creatures, the hunt might feature items to create a potion, materials they need for a class, the missing golden snitch or other themed hunt ideas. Use your imagination to create your own unique hunt.
11. Actual magic.
Invite a magician (illusionist) to perform for your participants. Make sure your magician is aware of your theme so it can be incorporated into the act.
12. Yule ball.
Host a dance for all participants. Let them know beforehand so they can bring special clothing. You can teach them dances before the ball. Choose more modern dances such as the Electric Slide and YMCA, country dances or even more classical dance like the ball on the movies. You can choose or let your participants vote for their type of ball.
13. Pranks for all.
Pranks can be a lot of fun. Explore the pranks Fred and George Weasley pulled and those available at Zonko’s Joke Shop. Brainstorm your own pranks. Create a secret book of your favorites.
What’s better than graduation? Create your own Hogwarts certificates or use one of the ones provided in the AEP supplement listed below. Make sure you create a final graduation event that your participants will remember.
15. Awards ceremony.
At the end of your event, a ceremony is a great way to recognize volunteers, hand out awards and more. Ask your volunteers or House Cup winners to create a Harry Potter themed ceremony to fit with your event. Provide a list of items, recognitions, etc. you need and who will be presenting so they can be included in the final ceremony.
- A few divination methods to introduce, printable palmistry information from Web and fortune teller printables
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