SparkNotes Blog

Take a Peek at the Hogwart’s Muggle Studies Course Syllabus

A strange scroll was recently discovered outside Platform 9 3/4 at King’s Cross. When unrolled, it revealed itself to be a course syllabus—left behind by an absentminded professor, no doubt. We transcribed this document for you so everyone would know what wizards are taught about the Muggle world. Read it quickly; we’re pretty sure a wizard will perform a Deletus Spell on this page once they figure out what it contains.

Muggle Studies Syllabus

Fall 2015

Required Textbooks: The Muggle Next Door (E. Giordan), A Muggle Lexicon (M. Carneiro), Muggles By Their Motors (A. Weasley), The Fault in Our Stars (J. Green)

Course Objective: Students will gain an appreciation of Muggle culture through the study of everyday Muggle experiences. Although there are a few extraordinary Muggles, the majority of them live in quiet ignorance of the magical world that lies just outside of their mental and physical abilities. They have compensated for their lack of magic by creating a network of wires and motors that help them transport themselves and complete their daily jobs, as well as a strong global culture of music and storytelling. Our course attempts to understand how these Muggles live, and how they thrive amidst circumstances most of us cannot imagine.

Attendance Policy: Students are expected to appear at every class session. No student shall claim to have been invisible during class. Students are entitled to one excused absence; after that, all absences must require a note from Matron Hannah Abbott as proof of illness, injury, or poorly cast charm. Students found using Polyjuice Potion to allow another person to represent them in class will automatically fail.

Course Outline:

Week 1: Who Are Muggles, and Why Do We Study Them? An overview of the earth’s non-magical population as it relates to your wizarding education.

Week 2: A Life Without Magic: The toil Muggles experience in their day-to-day existence. Complete “My Life as a Muggle” assignment.

Week 3: Why Muggles Need Electricity: A life without Lumos is a very dim one.

Week 4: Muggle Terms and Their Meanings: The computer “mouse,” the computer “chip,” the computer “tower”—really, these Muggles are very reliant on their computers.

Week 5: Muggle Transportation: An in-class viewing of Planes, Trains, and Automobiles. This class session will also introduce you to the Muggle technology known as the VHS.

Week 6: How Muggles Spend Their Spare Time: The various types of screens Muggles interact with in the evenings.

Week 7: Talking to Muggles: How to discuss cultural differences while remaining respectful. Begin “Interview a Muggle” assignment.

Week 8: Talking to Muggles, Part 2: How to have short conversations with Muggles without accidentally revealing the wizarding world. Turn in “Interview a Muggle” assignment.

Week 9: MIDTERM EXAM. Bring six scrolls and a fresh quill.

Week 10: Guest Speaker: Arthur Weasley. The Head of the Ministry’s Misuse of Muggle Artefacts Office will show us some of the Ministry’s most unique Muggle artefacts, and discuss appropriate methods of handling Muggle technology and tools.

Week 11: Muggle Genetics: Why every magical Muggle child has an ancient magical ancestor somewhere in the family tree.

Week 12: T-Shirts and Blue Jeans: The casualty of Muggle fashion. Begin “Muggle Fashion Show” assignment.

Week 13: The Kardashians—The Muggle version of “the Tale of the Three Brothers.”

Week 14: Muggle Fashion Show.

Week 15: The Stories Muggles Tell: Class discussion of The Fault in Our Stars. Turn in book report assignment.

Week 16: What Muggles Consider “Magic:” How card tricks and coins deceived an entire culture.

Week 17: Taylor Swift’s 1989. Please wear shoes you can dance in.

Week 18: FINAL EXAM. Bring 12 scrolls and two useable quills.

Assignments:

1) “My Life as a Muggle:” At the beginning of Week 2, each student will turn in their wand and will be unable to retrieve it for 48 hours. Your other teachers will be informed that you are participating in this immersive experiment. Your wand shall be returned to you in exchange for a short personal diary (not to exceed two scrolls) of this experience. Please note that you are not allowed to use Quick-Quotes Quills or any other type of enchanted object for this project, as it is your goal to simulate the arduous nature of the Muggle life as thoroughly as possible.

2) Interview a Muggle: Identify a fellow Hogwarts student with two Muggle parents and interview that student about his or her life prior to age 11. Please attempt to incorporate as much of the class material as possible, such as asking if the student has ever used a computer mouse. Your completed interview should be four scrolls long, and your grade will be based on your application of course concepts. Spelling counts.

3) Muggle Fashion Show: Create and wear to class an outfit that reflects Muggle contemporary fashion. You may not borrow any items from fellow Hogwarts students with Muggle backgrounds; instead, I encourage you to use your creativity in crafting clothing out of scarves, scrolls and other material you may have at hand. As Muggle television star Tim Gunn would say, “Make it work.”

4) Book Report: Read John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars and write two scrolls worth of analysis, focusing on how these characters’ lives would have been different if they had been wizards.