Study Guide

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban Education

By J.K. Rowling

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The Harry Potter novels sort of act as their very own The More You Know PSA – the things that Harry and his fellow students learn during the school year always turn out to be very important to the novel as a whole and to the adventures Harry inevitably gets involved with outside of school. Education does pay off, after all! Hermione's knowledge saves the day frequently, and the spells Harry and his friends get from class always have thematic significance. This year the theme seems to be happiness and light – things to fight darkness and fear. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is a novel of preparation for darker fights to come in lots of ways, and the preparation and education occurs outside the classroom too. Learning how to be an adult and to start surviving and doing good in the wider world is an important part of Book 3.

Questions About Education

  1. What do the spells that Harry learns have in common and how is this thematically significant?
  2. What are the different kinds of education and learning shown in the novel, and do any characters embody certain types of learning?
  3. What sort of lessons does Harry learn outside of school in this novel?
  4. How are the new classes added to the curriculum significant in terms of the book's themes?

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