Ideas for Reports and Papers

1. Research information about the criminal justice system in Great Britain and the country where you live. Compare and contrast the two systems.

2. Write a paper about how fugitives are depicted in literature and movies. Which fugitives have become folk heroes? Why do they appeal to people?

3. Prepare a persuasive speech about a topic which interests you or that explains something about yourself that people tend to misunderstand.

4. Explain what kind of animal you would be if you were an Animagus. Write a story about that animal and draw a picture to illustrate your tale. Older students can analyze how the Animagi represent both ambiguity and freedom and compare this transformation to the maturing of a child into an adult.

5. Research the history of capital punishment in several countries and compare and contrast public reaction in those countries to that punishment. Do statistics suggest that the death penalty has deterred murderers? Graph annual murder rates for countries with and without the death penalty and analyze the data.

6. Examine the passages in which Harry and Hermione return to Hagrid’s shack and write a report about whether you think Dumbledore’s statements reveal that he was aware that Harry and Hermione had magically traveled through time? If so, what do you think this suggests about Dumbledore’s character? If not, what do you think his comments meant? Discuss the ethical and moral ramifications of Dumbledore’s decision to assist Harry and Hermione to free Black and Buckbeak.

7. In a journal entry, tell about an experience you had when something or someone was not like you thought they were at first. How did you react? Did this new knowledge change your opinion about the thing or person? Did you like them more, less, or the same?

8. Write a report about dogs, rats, wolves, or stags and their depiction in mythology and history.

9. What symbols does the Dementor’s Kiss parallel in popular culture and literature? Write a paper discussing these similarities.

10. Write an essay describing how effectively the new settings introduced in this book accentuate the series? Prepare a similar paper discussing new characters and their role in advancing the book’s and series’ plots. This novel differs from the previous books in the series because Harry does not confront Voldemort directly. Write a critical essay about whether this was a satisfactory conclusion or if you would have preferred for Voldemort to have been included.

11. Discuss time as a metaphor in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. What do you think Harry’s and Hermione’s manipulation of time represents?

12. Analyze how the Quidditch defeat affected Harry and assess whether this was an effective literary device.

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