True magic: Wizard School Party for 7-10 year olds

Harry Potter series is both a source of greatest joy and frustration to kids. Joy – understandable: it opens up the amazing magical world, that seems to step right from every kid’s magical dreams. Adventures, magic items, flying… where the frustration comes from? Quite uniquely, every book is perfect for the same age group as the characters. Well, it is great from literary standpoint and appealing to wider age groups, but nobody wants to wait another year, two, three to read the next sequel!!! It is so frustrating!!! Yet, it is a dream-come-true theme for a party, perfect for either a birthday or a Halloween.

My niece had this fabulous party for her birthday a couple of years ago (Let’s go magical! Wizard School party). So, when my oldest picked it for his last year’s Halloween party, I couldn’t wait to get started. Now that it is over, I really wish I could do it again: the kids went out of their minds with excitement.

Tossing all the rambling aside, let’s get to business: what did we end up doing with this fabulous theme? A fabulous party, of course!

The first few activities details you can get from our last party: Let’s go magical! Wizard School party, so I’ll go over them very briefly and move on right onto the classes.

Introduction to Hogwarts

Hogwarts is a magic school for Wizards and Witches. Wizards and Witches start their term in Hogwarts at 11, so since most of our students are much younger, we start with our local Magic School.

Dress up (capes, wands)

Everyone got their cape – rectangular black piece of fabric from a local fabric store; wand (this time around I just ordered really pretty little wand online, rather then making it during the party – we had waaaay too many older boys to be interested in decorating them) and an official Hogwarts badge (printed out at home and attached with a pin).

Sorting hat (hat, Hogwarts symbol)

To avoid all kids fighting over the Gryffindor house, we sorted them into our own houses: “Bluefindor, “Redfindor, “Greenfindor. With this terminology you can have as many houses as you wish: Pinkfindor? Aquamarinfindor?

I got a really cool looking witch hat from michaels, big enough to fit a cell phone inside the cone-top. Sewed the little fabric (wedding favors?) bag inside, dialed in my helper right before the “showtime.

I wrote all Sorting Head messages in advance. This way my helper could say things really specific, impressing the kids… and distracting them from those “let’s reveal how you did it desires… Worked very well for us!

Here are a few ones I’ve used:
Jack: Aah, the birthday boy! Welcome, welcome! Ok, this one is really hardworking, LOVES to be the leader, a real inventor too! Great with robots! Well, that’s clearly a… Bluefindor!
Kathy: Very bright and self assured! You can achieve great things… really big and great… With a mind that good you really belong to… Redfindor!
Jim: Courage, lots and lots of courage. Never afraid of new things, always ready for the new adventure. Easy going, fun, that’s a Redfindor!
Asher: Great sense of humor! Very good at logic, loves to find out why and how things work… Lots of questions, lots new to learn at Bluefindor!
Brian: Amazing talents! Truly loyal and kind friend, easy going, remarkably clever! That’s a Bluefindor!
Sam: We’ve got a true scientific mind! Fast tongue, lots of persuasion, awesome organizing a really good team for a task. Where should I put you? Oh, I think you would do great in Redfindor!
Julie: An artist at heart! Remarkably creative. Exceptionally smart decisions. That’s a Bluefindor!
Supplies: Witch hat, cell phone

Explaining rules, points, goal

Each house is competing against one another for a House Cup. And for the special prizes hidden inside the House Cup for every student in the winning house. Every time they answer a question correctly, or do an assignment well – they get points. Or lose it, if things are not done right! We had exceptionally good students, so, of course, nobody lost any points.

First lesson: Advanced Math! No, Herbology.

For our herbology class we were supposed to replant Madrake roots. I’ve picked up a few especially weird looking ginger roots from the supermarket and painted them with glittery spray paints. Every house was equipped with shovels and assigned a spot where to start digging. Oh, kids LOVE shovels regardless of the age. They could be still digging if they had a chance. They not only found the my “preplanted madrakes (some sticking from the ground, some in a bushes, some under the trees, some just in a grass), but also a few of their own, even more bizarre looking things in my backyard…
Supplies: painted ginger roots, shovels

Magic science for kids

Second lesson: Divination (balloons, wishes)

Black balloons. As you are blowing them, put a little note inside with a future prediction. Full list of our predictions: Let’s go magical! Wizard School party. Nothing can beat the excitement the kids had popping those balloons and “reading the future in such an exciting way.
Supplies: Black balloons, prediction printouts

Safety procedures: Weeping Willow

The Hogwarts Wizarding School grounds include a very dangerous tree: a Weeping Willow, that smashes its branches at anybody approaching it. Everyone takes a chance at avoiding its deadly branch swings! How? I am standing in the middle of a circle of “students and rotating a rope around myself (very low, very-very close to the ground). As the rope approaches them, the kids jump over it and wait for another round. Anybody “hit by a Weeping Willow branch (rope) – steps out of the game, until only one winner is left.
Supplies: rope

Quiditch!

First Half of the Game: Scoring Quaffles.
Each house team is lining up one behind another. Mount your brooms, class, grab a quaffle, fly (run) towards the hoops and drop the ball inside, go back and give the broom to the next student.
Second Half of the Game: Get the snitch.
Essentially – duck-duck-gooze with a snitch.
Supplies: a balloon for quaffle, brooms, hoop, a ball for a snitch

Third Lesson: Transfiguration

Do you know the magic spell for transfiguration? “Transfico Animale!
Every house gets two animals to show. The other houses are trying to guess what they are. Some ideas: dragon, unicorn, three headed cerber, vasilisk.
Supplies: none!

Fourth Lesson: Potions

Oh, this is an absolute best.
Some advance preparations were in order: we needed all the potion ingredients. The last time we got all of our ingredients in the regular supermarket, so you can find the list here: Let’s go magical! Wizard School party. This time I wanted to make them look even more exotic, so I went to the most exotic location I could: Chinese Supermarket. Everything on their shelves looks as if it descended from Professor Snape’s secret reserves. All they needed were some names and cool looking jars: some old ones – Dragon Toenails, Manticore Pituitary, Beetle Eyes, salamander Skin, Eye of Blind Cat, Hippogriff Gizzard, Bat Liver, Bloodworms, Deadly Nighshade; some new – Sphinx Droppings, Salamander Juice, Jellied Chimera Feet, Puke of Invisible Snake, Ogre Potion, Weeping Willow oil, etc. And, of course, our Herbology finds – Mandrake Root. There was a water jar labeled Phoenix Tears.
Potions that we created:
Lava lamp science project for young wizards
Make a WOW Potion with your young wizard! Fun kitchen chemistry …
More spells:
(keep in mind that Crushed Unicorn Horn are crushed alka-seltzer tablets, Newt Blood – green colored water, Spider Venom Powder – Potassium permanganate, that I found in a local pharmacy. Phoenix Tears – regular tap water.)
Harry Potter Halloween or Birthday Party - Potions Dream Come True Spell (Each student got directions below and created their own free-mix combination – oh, that was definitely the best part!!! )

Harry Potter Halloween or Birthday Party - Potions ClassSupplies:glass jars, magic wands, trays, disposable cups, gloves, disposable table clothes (to cover the tables during experiments). Ingredients: Asian supermarket finds; cloves, water mixed with food coloring, other bizzare looking things. Lemons, paper, fan. water.

Magic science kits Harry Potter Halloween or Birthday Party - Potions Class

Harry Potter Halloween or Birthday Party - Potions Class

Sorcerer’s stone treasure hunt

Mail! An owl brought you mail! A little toy owl was thrown into the room with a letter: “To find “you know what “ pass the monster of the Chamber of Secret. House teamed up again, lined up, and had a race walking backward, guiding themselves with mirrors for looking behind their backs to cross the corridor into another room… and once they all did – they found a marvelous treasure chest with a carefully wrapped very pretty crystal inside (I actually picked up a crystal lamp from Walmart, plugged and plugged it in, but regular cute looking crystal or rock would work). One by one, each wizard and witch got to place their magic wand to the crystal and make a wish. After they would close their eyes, whisper something special, and open it again – the crystal would “magically light up to show them, that their wish will come true! Just a switch and a helper, and so much magic!

After the race the Houses counted the points… and it turned out that they had equal number of points! Everybody got a prize from the House Cup – a pack of All Flavor Beans!

Supplies: 2 mirrors, treasure chest, wrapped stone, light

The Cake!

Oooo, I wasn’t sleeping two nights in a row for this marvel. It surely was the crown jewel of my cake making – I don’t think I ever created something so elaborate!

Harry Potter Halloween or Birthday Party -Cake