Demystifying Hogwarts: Good, Evil, and the Influence of Supernatural Figures in the Harry Potter Book Series

Jennifer Dalesandro, Third Grade, Bain Elementary School

Final Unit(pdf)   Implementing Teaching Standards(pdf)


This curriculum unit will serve as a creative platform to assist students in building their literacy skills related to theme, symbolism, author’s purpose, and inference. In this unit, students will explore the age-old theme of good vs. evil as it applies to a variety of media with the focus being on the popular children’s book series Harry Potter. This unit will encourage students to use abstract thinking in order to explore the way in which prior learning and cultural influences affect their personal view and definition of what is good and what is evil. By understanding how their brain compartmentalizes each concept, students will be able to offer different perspectives on good vs. evil and understand that a character, as well as a person, does not necessarily fit into one category but can have traits of both. Further attention will be given to the way that supernatural figures are used to represent these concepts in the book series as well as popular media. This unit includes several activities to assist students in contextually defining and identifying the concept of good vs. evil creating a skill-set that they will be able to apply to other media outlets such as literature, film, and theater.