With schools closed across the country, plenty of newly homeschooling parents are taking advantage of the chance to read more with their kids. That means the Harry Potter books and movies are both seeing a lot more usage this month.
Whether you’re a reading family or a movie-watching family or maybe doing a bit of both, here’s a twist on our Disney Movie Word Challenge to engage your children and boost their vocabulary at the same time! Minerva McGonagall and Albus Dumbledore would definitely approve.
First, the instructions:
- Before starting each book or movie, go over the word list for the specific movie with your child.
- Ask your child if they remember the word or if it sounds new to them.
- Ask them to use it in a sentence about the book or movie.
- Once they understand, enter the world of Harry Potter! Tell them to jump up, do a little dance, or wiggle around when they hear the word and then tell you the definition.
- If you can catch that moment on video, share it to social media! Be sure to tag @dictionarycom and use the hashtag #DictionaryMovieWordChallenge or #DictionaryBookWordChallenge.
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
sorcerer: a person who practices magic; a wizard
dumbledore: in addition to the name of the Hogwarts headmaster, this is also a British word for a bumblebee
Draco: a constellation which is also known as the Dragon
Minerva: Like Dumbledore, Professor McGonagall’s name also doubles as a word; Minerva means wise woman
potter: a person who makes pottery
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
chamber: a room
basilisk: a mythical serpent-like creature, said to kill by its breath or look
muggle: a nonmagical person
petrified: paralyzed with horror, astonishment or other strong emotions
riddle: a puzzling question, thing or person
More from Dictionary.com: The Meanings Behind “Harry Potter” Spells
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Sirius: in astronomy, Sirius is known as the Dog Star, the brightest-appearing star in the sky
expecto patronum: “I await a patron”; a patron is defined as a protector
hippogriff: a fictitious creature that is half horse, half griffin
quidditch: a game in which players fly on broomsticks
divination: the practice of foretelling the future
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
goblet: a drinking glass with a base and stem
Hufflepuff: one of the four houses of Hogwarts; Hufflepuffs are patient, hard-working and fair.
granger: a farmer
crouch: to bend close to the ground
avada kedavra: origin of abracadabra, means let the things be destroyed
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
phoenix: a mythical bird that rises from its own ashes
apparition: a supernatural appearance of a person or thing, especially a ghost
luna: a goddess personifying the moon
pansy: a violet
Lucius: from a Latin word meaning “light”
More From Dictionary.com: Learn At Home Activity: Play ’80s Movie Word Bingo With The Kids
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
hagrid: afflicted with worry or dread; tormented
horcrux: object created by dark magic
marauder: someone who roams around in quest of plunder
felix: from a latin word meaning “happy, lucky”
gaunt: extremely thin and bony
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
Bellatrix: a blue-white star in the constellation Orion
bard: a poet
resurrection: the act of rising from the dead
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