by emily belfiore | Wed., Apr. 1, 2020 10:31 AM
J.K. Rowling is helping children everywhere become wizards.
Inspired by recent school closures in response to the coronavirus pandemic, the famous author announced the launch of Harry Potter At Home, a free online hub that will provide children with educational wizarding fun while social distancing.
"Parents, teachers and carers working to keep children amused and interested while we're on lockdown might need a bit of magic, so I'm delighted to launch http://harrypotterathome.com," Rowling said in a tweet.
Done in collaboration with Scholastic and Bloomsbury, the digital platform grants children access to the magic of Hogwarts while "casting a Banishing Charm on boredom" with articles, quizzes, puzzles, craft videos and more.
Harry Potter At Home will also connect fans to the wizarding world with various Harry Potter-inspired features, including being sorted into your Hogwarts house. To join in on the fun, fans simply register at harrypotterathome.com and will be sorted right away.
"The Harry Potter At Home hub aims to help inspire you, your family, your friends, and especially children all around the world to read for pleasure and enjoy the stories, as well as bring some magic-infused joy and entertainment to all the family," the website reads. "But the hub is also a place for those of you who have loved Harry Potter for decades: a place for you to feel the warmth of the fire in the Gryffindor common room or a much-needed hug from Mrs Weasley."
But the magic doesn't stop there. Additionally, Rowling also announced that Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone audiobooks will be free to access on Audible Stories and OverDrive throughout the month of April.
Parents, teachers and carers working to keep children amused and interested while we’re on lockdown might need a bit of magic, so I’m delighted to launch https://t.co/cPg0dZpexB pic.twitter.com/i0ZjTplVoU— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) April 1, 2020
In a statement to Good Morning America, Rowling said, "The teachers, parents and carers that are working to keep children's lives as normal and as happy as possible while we're all on lockdown deserve a bit of magic. I hope these initiatives will give children, and even adults, a happy distraction during their enforced stay at home time."
During this period of social distancing, several organizations have created digital educational programs for children. After announcing the temporary closure of its facilities, The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden launched its Home Safari Facebook Live series for all of its young animal enthusiasts. For its inaugural episode, fan-favorite zoo member Fiona The Hippo helped kick things off with a fun-filled tour of her habitat.