First, we were taken into a cinema room where we watched a film about the making of the Harry Potter films. Suddenly, the cinema screen lifted to reveal the doors to the Great Hall. It was fantastic to see the looks of amazement on the children's faces. With a huge sense of anticipation in the air, the doors were opened and we found ourselves walking on the real stone floor of the Great Hall.
After this, we looked at the interior sets and some of the props that were used in the films. We were also given the task of spotting Golden Snitches which were hidden in the sets. We particularly liked the set for Potions Class and the Burrow, where the Weasley's live - there was all sorts of magic going on in these locations!
We also had photographs taken which made some of us look like giants!
Next, we all had a go at riding our very own broomsticks! We wore robes for our houses and then learned the best technique for riding in style. We learned all about green screen and how this means any background can be placed behind us, we are going to use some of these techniques in our computing sessions. Don't forgot to download your picture!
After lunch, we summoned the courage to wander into the Forbidden Forest. Here we were greeted by Buckbeak, we bowed to him to show our respect and were thrilled when he bowed back. Then we made our way further into the Forbidden Forest and into the lair of Aragog and the other Acromantula. The children were very brave and looked after their terrified adults!
Then it was time to make our way to the wall between Platforms 9 and 10 and onto Platform 9 3/4, where we found the Hogwarts Express! We also had another experience of green screen, pretending that we were on our way to Hogwarts.
After the fun of the Hogwarts Express, we made our way outside to see some of the exterior sets and larger props. We were able to board the Knight Bus and see inside 4 Privet Drive! In this area, there were also examples of the vehicles used in the films, such as Hagrid's motorbike and the Ford Anglia which Ron and Harry flew to Hogwarts.
Next, we made our way to the Creatures Effects Department. In this area, we learned all about the animatronic creatures used in the films and the prosthetics used to make the actors look like magical beings, witches or wizards. We were particularly interested to here about the detail put into the prosthetics, such as sock marks on a goblin's leg.
This led us to the excitement of entering Diagon Alley! We were able to walk down the cobbled street and look into the windows of all the shops we have been learning about. We were thrilled to spot Ollivander's Wand Shop and Eeylops's Owl Emporium, among others. However our favourite shop was Weasley's Joke Shop, where we saw a display for Puking Pastilles!
After spotting everything we would need as Hogwarts First-Years, we made our way out of Diagon Alley and into an area where we could view scale models of all of settings used in the films. We were all amazed at the skill and attention that had gone into making these intricate models.
Finally, at the end of the route around the small models, we found ourselves face to face with the stunning model of Hogwarts Castle. The children stopped in their tracks when they saw the beautiful building in front of them. The care and detail put into this model is astounding and it was fantastic to see the children's appreciation for this.
We all had a fantastic day and were amazed by everything we saw! All of the adults were so impressed with the behaviour of the children, we couldn't have asked for anything more from them.
Well done Years 3 and 4, and thank you to all of the adults who made our trip possible. We really appreciate it.
Following our trip, the children have produced fabulous pieces of work - from guides for Hogwarts First-Years, to Care of Magical Creatures booklets and beyond! Their fantastic work will be placed on a display in the corridor so the other children and adults can enjoy it as much as we did!