Friday, June 27, 2008

It's definitely genetic -

Had a lovely experience at my almost 14 year old niece's middle school graduation last week (sappy Aunt Jen cries). This is her speech - a finalist in the school competition - which not only proves Harry Potter obsession is genetic but is wonderful and charming and shows I have some serious family competition in the writing business.

When I reflect on the past three years at Mill Valley Middle School, I like to compare them to Harry Potter’s six years at Hogwarts; after all, Harry, Ron, and Hermione have been around since we were in kindergarten.

When I think of science, I think of Potions class. This isn’t because Ms. D reminds me of Professor Snape, but because we started out this year doing chemistry. It all seemed like magic, especially when your average pink substance turned blue, and started to smell like the sewage plant next door to MVMS.

Social Studies reminds me of Defense Against the Dark Arts, because of the Current Events we focused on. These included the crisis of water bottles contributing to landfill waste and global warming. Harry and his friends learn about the dangers of Voldemort, and how to protect the Wizarding World. Likewise, we’ve learned ways to protect our world from this crisis.

When I think about Language Arts, I relate it to Charms, because everyday we learn something new like appositives, conjunctions, or prepositions. Then we practice them over and over, like Harry does with spells.

In chorus we sang the song “Double Trouble” from the third Harry Potter movie, and although we were in our hot old gym instead of the luminous Great Hall, it was still very fun because Ms. S was so enthusiastic!

Of course, large parts of the Harry Potter series are the occasions when Harry faces Voldemort. We have definitely had to face some fierce battles of our own throughout our three years here. One challenge for me was Algebra. Finding the solution for “x” was almost as hard as finding the entrance to the Chamber of Secrets.

Another Voldemort-like challenge for us are friendships. There is always some secret being told, or some heart being broken. But however much tension there is, we find a way to get through it. There are always those moments of inexplicable laughter that simply lightens our day, like conjuring your first Patronus in the Room of Requirement.

I may not be able to predict the future like Professor Trelawney, but I know that High school will bring changes, especially with friends branching off to other schools or moving away. But whatever it does bring, we will always have the incredible memories of the magical years spent at Mill Valley Middle School.

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