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Clowne Junior School

Working together for success and happiness


Today we will be looking at how writers create vivid images in more detail.

Read  Extract A and up to ‘…really looking forward to.’


Extract A 

Then they visited the apothecary’s, which was fascinating enough to make up for its horrible smell, a mixture of bad eggs and rotted cabbages. Barrels of slimy stuff stood on the floor, jars of herbs, dried roots and bright powders lined the walls, bundles of feathers, strings of fangs and snarled claws hung from the ceiling. While Hagrid asked the man behind the counter for a supply of some basic potion ingredients for Harry, Harry himself examined silver unicorn horns at twenty one Galleons each and minuscule, glitter black beetle eyes (five Knuts a scoop).

Outside the apothecary’s, Hagrid checked Harry’s list again.

‘Just yer wand left – oh yeah, an’ I still haven’t got yeh a birthday present.’

Harry felt himself go red.

‘You don’t have to – ‘

‘I know I don’t have to. Tell yeh what, I’ll get yer an animal. Not a toad, toads went outta fashion years ago, yeh’d be laughed at – an’ I don’ like cats, they make me sneeze. I’ll get yer an owl. All the kids want owls, they’re dead useful, carry yer post an’ everythin’.’

Twenty minutes later, they left Eeylops Owl Emporium, which had been dark and full of rustling and flickering, jewel-bright eyes. Harry now carried a large cage which held a beautiful snowy owl, fast asleep with her head under her wing. He couldn’t stop stammering his thanks, sounding just like Professor Quirrell.

‘Don’ mention it,’ said Hagrid gruffly. ‘Don’ expect you’ve had a lotta presents from them Dursleys. Just Ollivanders left now – only place fer wands, Ollivanders, and yeh gotta have the best wand.’

A magic wand…this was what Harry had been really looking forward to.

The last shop was narrow and shabby. Peeling gold letters over the door read Ollivanders: makers of Fine Wands since 382 BC. A single wand lay on a faded purple cushion in the dusty window.

A tinkling bell rang somewhere deep in the depths of the shop as they stepped inside. It was a tiny place, empty except for a single spindly chair which Hagrid sat on to wait. Harry felt strangely as though he had entered a very strict library; he swallowed a lot of new questions which had just occurred to him and looked instead at the thousands of narrow boxes piled neatly right up to the ceiling. For some reason, the back of his neck prickled. The very dust and silence here seemed to tingle with some secret magic.



Look at how description is combined with action and dialogue. Which noun phrases are striking? Notice how it is not just adjectives which build an image –verbs, adverbs, prepositional phrases and adverbials all help to create the world and characters in HP.


Now, answer the following questions about the extract:


Questions 1-5 are about Extract A Read from ‘The last shop was narrow…’



1) What colour are the letters over the wand shop door?


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2) It was a tiny place, empty except for a single spindly chair which Hagrid sat on to wait.


Which word is closest in meaning to spindly? Tick one.


old        turning       thin          cracked

1 mark


3) Harry felt strangely as though he had entered a very strict library.


What does this tell you about the shop and how it makes Harry feel?




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4) Give one example of a hint that something exciting or mysterious is about to happen.




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5) Name one detail that makes this shop seem unusual or different to other shops.


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If you would like an extra challenge, Read Extract B and  answer some further questions


‘Good afternoon,’ said a soft voice. Harry jumped. Hagrid must have jumped too, because there was a loud crunching noise and he got quickly off the spindly chair.

An old man was standing before them, his wide, pale eyes shining like moons through the gloom of the shop.

‘Hello,’ said Harry awkwardly.

‘Ah yes,’ said the man. ‘Yes, yes. I thought I’d be seeing you soon. Harry Potter.’ It wasn’t a question. ‘You have your mother’s eyes. It seems only yesterday she was in here herself, buying her first wand. Ten and a quarter inches long, swishy, made of willow. Nice wand for charm work.’

Mr Ollivander moved closer to Harry. Harry wished he would blink. Those silvery eyes were a bit creepy.

‘Your father, on the other hand, favoured a mahogany wand. Eleven inches. Pliable. A little more power and excellent for transfiguration. Well, I say your father favoured it – it’s really the wand that chooses the wizard, of course.’

Mr Ollivander had come so close that he and Harry were almost nose to nose. Harry could see himself reflected in those misty eyes.

‘And that’s where…’

Mr Ollivander touched the lightning scar on Harry’s forehead with a long, white finger.

‘I’m sorry to say I sold the wand that did it,’ he said softly. ‘Thirteen and a half inches. Yew. Powerful wand, very powerful, and in the wrong hands… Well, if I’d known what the wand was going out into the world to do…’

He shook his head and then, to Harry’s relief, spotted Hagrid.

‘Rubeus! Rubeus Hagrid! How nice to see you again … Oak, sixteen inches, rather bendy, wasn’t it?’

‘It was, sir, yes,’ said Hagrid.

‘Good wand, that one. But I suppose they snapped it in half when you got expelled?’ said Mr Ollivander, suddenly stern.

‘Er – yes, they did, yes,’ said Hagrid, shuffling his feet. ‘I’ve still got the pieces, though,’ he added brightly.

‘But you don’t use them?’ said Mr Ollivander sharply.

‘Oh, no, sir,’ said Hagrid quickly. Harry noticed he gripped his pink umbrella very tightly as he spoke.

‘Hmmm,’ said Mr Ollivander, giving Hagrid a piercing look. ‘Well, now – Mr Potter. Let me see.’ He pulled a long tape measure out of his pocket. ‘Which is your wand arm?’

‘Er-well, I’m right-handed,’ said Harry.

‘Hold out your arm. That’s it.’ He measured Harry from shoulder to finger, then wrist to elbow, shoulder to floor, knee to armpit and round his head. As he measured, he said, ‘Every Ollivander wand has a core of a powerful magical substance, Mr Potter. We use unicorn hairs, phoenix tail feathers and the heartstrings of dragons.


Questions 6-10 are about Extract B


6) Hagrid must have jumped too, because there was a loud crunching noise and he got quickly off the chair.


What do you think the crunching noise was?


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7) Name two things that are unusual about Ollivander’s eyes.





b._________________________________________________________________________               1 mark



8) ‘Your father, on the other hand, favoured a mahogany wand…’


What does the word favoured mean in this context?


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9) ‘Hmmm,’ said Mr Ollivander, giving Hagrid a piercing look.


Do you think Ollivander believes Hagrid? Explain your answer using words from this text.




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10) Why does Rowling list the different measurements that Ollivander makes? What image is she building of this character?





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