The end of October is upon us and November is just around the corner! I can’t believe how fast this year has flown by, and I have to say it has been a rough one. Halloween is one of my favorite holidays and I made a costume once again this year (Anna’s coronation dress from frozen) but this last week has been extremely challenging, as I live in Pittsburgh. While I did not personally know any of the victims, I have friends and colleagues who did. The stories of the victims have been overwhelming and their memories deserve to live on. So I’m taking this brief moment to encourage any of you in the United States to ensure you vote this coming Tuesday. We have the ability to enact change, but it’s up to us to show up.
Okay, I’ll try not to be so heavy from here on out. Last month, I participated in the OWLs read-a-thon. It was the first time I have ever participated in a read-a-thon, and I learned a lot. I chose giant books to read that were emotionally draining and attempted to read several in one sitting over a weekend. Needless to say, mentally I burned out and couldn’t look at another book for the rest of the month. I made notes, saw what worked for other people, and vowed I would do better and be smarter next time. For example, I will read books I am super pumped about, and books that are shorter overall.
And next time is upon us! As the follow-up to the OWLs, November is the NEWTs! I’ll be participating with the same wonderful group of ladies as the last time (Sophie, Lily, and Steph). If you are interested in watching the original video describing the read-a-thon, here it is:
So these are a lot harder than the OWLs, and the first rule is that you can only attempt the subjects that you passed in the OWLs. For me, that was Arithmancy, Charms, History of Magic, and Muggle Studies. The requirements for the NEWTs for these subjects are as follows:
A: Book of at least 300 pages
E: Book that ends on an even numbered page
O: A book that’s not a first in a series
A: Read a book with magic in it
E: A book with a cover that charmed you (would buy without knowing more about it)
O: A book that you think will leave a mark
History of Magic
A: Book that you think would fit right in at the Hogwarts Library
E: Read a book published at least 5 years ago
O: A book that’s at least 400 pages long
A: Read a book written by one of your favourite authors
E: Read a biography
O: Read a retelling
In order to obtain each grade, you have to read the books in order for each subject. Being realistic, I am going to focus on two, maybe three subjects. While I might attempt an A in Muggle Studies, the prompts for a higher score seem a little difficult for me.
For Arithmancy, I might read:
For Charms, I might read:
And for History of Magic, I might read:
I am most excited for the books I chose for Charms and History of Magic, so I will probably focus on getting high marks in those subjects first. I think what is really holding me back on Muggle Studies is the biography requirement. If anyone has any recommendations on a truly engaging biography, I’m all ears!
Good luck to everyone participating!!