harry potter

Discussion in 'General Education Archives' started by Guest, Mar 6, 2002.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Mar 6, 2002

    we are currently in our final year of primary teaching at university of wollongong and would like to get some feedback from teachers on the topic of - is it appropriate to use harry potter within the primary school curriculum.

    any and all information/opinions given to us during the prosess of our research study will be kept anonymous. in saying that we do require to know what country you are teaching/taught at.

    thankyou to all who participate in our research
     
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  3. Seich30

    Seich30 Comrade

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    Mar 7, 2002

    USA -- Florida

    I feel it is inappropiate. My county is considering taking the books out of the library. I am a teacher, but if I had a child in a class where this book was being read I would be very upset. I'm sure other parents feel the same way, and for that reason alone it should not be read.
     
  4. LisaN

    LisaN Rookie

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    Mar 7, 2002

    I would not have allowed my now grown son to participate if it had been used. There are many other books to choose from that would not offend anyone. I have read on some literature sites that the books are not well written anyway, so they shouldn't be used for that reason alone!
     
  5. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Mar 10, 2002

    First of all, I would like to say that I do not feel as though the Harry Potter books should be used in a primary classroom. Why? I believe that the content is not appropriate for this age of students. I teach in an upper grade classroom and have not considered using the books as a classroom read aloud nor have I considered them for literature circles. Why? Because of the same responses that were made previous to mine. I feel as though parents and often some teachers are not aware of what the Harry Potter books are like. They listen to the hype and make poor, uneducated judgements. (I am not saying that this is the case with the two previous responses however.) I would never use the books in class as I would not want to deal with the barrage of parental complaints. I am not a science fiction/fantasy reader, never have been. HOWEVER, I do feel that the H.P. books have a place in schools. There is no subject matter in these books that students do not see in an average day on TV. I truly understand why my students and many others are HOOKED on these books... it is a simple case of good vs evil just like the "days of old" fairytales that we teach our children. I have read all four books.... did I love them? No...that is not my favorite genre. Are they written well? That is a double-edged sword... on the one hand I would not teach an English lesson with them, but on the other... if students are reading them and loving it than I think that the writing is successful. Should children be allowed to read them and have free access to each book? Yes... allowing children to read what he/she wants is a powerful motivator for learning to enjoy reading especially independent reading.
     
  6. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Mar 12, 2002

    The long (previous) response was from a teacher in the USA.
     
  7. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    Apr 8, 2002

    I'm an education student in Illinois (USA), and this topic came up in a class earlier this semester...the scenario was that we had been reading it as a class book (the kind you read a chapter a day on to the whole class), and the class was really enjoying it, but a parent or two had called to complain about the subject matter. What I think is that it's basically a book about good vs. evil as was stated previously, and that if kids want to read it, so be it. However, if parents wish to complain about it, they have a right to let me know that they don't want the kid exposed to the book. They're difficult books, but they're classic kids stories...even though it's not my favorite genre of books, I really loved reading all four and am eagerly anticipating the next in the series. I think that if I was considering using it, I would tell the parents in the beginning of the year, giving them a list of books and allowing them to ask questions about any of them... from what I've learned (feel free to correct me from experience, this is just what they're teaching us), parents are more receptive to the idea if they know why a particular book is being used...or if they read more than simply the offending passage (or simple reviews). On this book, for example, I'm a strong Christian and I think there can be Christian views read into the story (don't have to be, but it's possible) if you wanted... the kids simply enjoy the story and they KNOW it's fantasy..

    Sorry for the long rambling post, I just wanted to state my views. :) Let me know if you have any questions about what I said. :)
     
  8. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Apr 13, 2002

    I teach in a public elementary school in Broward County, FL. Our school has banned teachers from using Harry Potter in any aspect of the curriculum. Several parents had noted their feelings toward witchcraft and wizardry, in respect to references in the Bible. I suppose if parents, especially of primary age children, don't feel a book is appropriate, and violates their religious principles, then it should not be used in the classroom.
    On a similar topic, all school-wide Halloween activities were prohibited for the first time this year including costumes of any kind for even the youngest kids (pre-k, which I teach). We had parents who , I guess you can say counter-complained, and told our principal and AP that they should recognize Witchcraft as an organized religion, and therefore not ban Halloween. The Principal and AP kept school-wide Halloween activities cancelled and formally stated that costumes were not allowed, but made no moves to reprimand parents, children, or teachers who chose to show up in costume.
     
  9. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Apr 26, 2002

    IS Harry really so scary?

    I am a twenty-one year old elementary education major at a university in Oklahoma. I am also a christian who teaches 3 and 4 year old Sunday school and works with the teens at a Southern Baptist church. I have read the Harry Potter books and feel that they do nothing to promote evil. THe magic used in Harry Potter books consists of invisibility cloaks, brooms that fly, and a pption to make your bones grow! I for one have more faith in our children's intelligence than to think that they would believe that they could do any of these things or that they are even possible. Harry is only scary if we teach our kids to view him in that perspective. IF you are offended by Harry Potter, then maybe we should consider banning our kids from THe Wizard of Oz or THe Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. I have given you some of my christian background just to let you know that I am a deeply spiritual person but I believe the Harry Potter boopks are just a good, fun read for kids.
    It seems to me that we have too many other very important things to worry about that to squabble over a charming boy and his adventures!
     
  10. LisaN

    LisaN Rookie

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    Apr 26, 2002

    Re: IS Harry really so scary?

    "IF you are offended by Harry Potter, then maybe we should consider banning our kids from THe Wizard of Oz or THe Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.'

    My children do not read these books either! I am not offended by them, and do not try to stop others from reading them, or to ban them from the library, but they are not appropriate reading for my children. That is a decision I make as their mother. There are so many other choices in books that skipping this few doesn't make any difference!
     
  11. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Apr 27, 2002

    I teach in a large K-8 school west of Phoenix, Arizona. While our school does not have a specific policy on the books, we do not have them in our library, but strangely enough, we have all four of them available as AR tests. Weird. I see many of our students walking around with them. I enjoyed all of the books and was willing to read them to my class, however, I took a survey before I decided to read them, and as not all parents felt comfortable with that, I did not read it to them, but it is available in my classroom as a reading choice.
     
  12. Guest

    Guest Guest

    May 1, 2002

    Harry P.

    I have been a middle school reading teacher for 4 years--I teach at a very low socio-economic school. All my students read below the 5th grade reading level--some of their parents/grandparents can't read at all. I'm here to tell everyone--that if a child is READING it is wonderful. As long as the subject matter is appropriate. Of course, we don't want kids reading dirty mags and such, but in this case...with Harry...IT"S WONDERFUL!!!!!!! I understand why English/LA teachers wouldn't want to teach lessons on the literary attributes of this particular series, BUT there is no reason why these books can't be available for student use. Our county does not ban them, our media center does not ban them--and I don't ban them. Honestly, I'm tired of hearing all the fussing over the books--I'll repeat what was said before--ban The Wizard of Oz, and ban all other books that spark imagination and creativity--Its all in the way the student's are introduced to the book!

    READING is important--and that's what we have to stress--teachers have a choice of whether or not they want to teach the books, so we should leave it at that! If parents don't want their children to read these books--then talk to their teachers--we shouldn't cause so much controversy over a BOOK--it looks bad for the kids--and they are the ones that matter!

    A loving teacher!!
     

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