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Author Topic: Chapter Six - Talons and Tea Leaves  (Read 1990 times)

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March 06, 2014, 06:58:53 PM

JaneMarple9

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Chapter Six: Talons and Tea Leaves
(Chap Summary by twiddlethosedials )


Fan Art by julianstips


The Trio get their new class schedules, and Hermione’s is a bit full, but of course no one can be in two places at once, Ron! They head off to their first new class, Divination, where Harry’s death is foretold, then to Care of Magical Creatures, where Harry manages to tame a Hippogriff and Draco manages to get himself nicked. Later that night, Harry, Ron and Hermione head down to Hagrid’s Hut to comfort him, only to sober him up enough to realize Harry shouldn’t be there after dark. Oops.

A few questions to get you started:

1) McGonagall, Trelawney, Ron and Hermione all have different takes on omens and the Grim. Whose opinion has the most effect on Harry?

2) What did you think about Dumbledore’s decision to hire Hagrid to teach Care of Magical Creatures? What did you think about that first lesson?

3) Take a look at all of those predictions made by Trelawney. What’s she right about? What is she completely off the mark about?



"There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with a really big library"
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March 07, 2014, 11:42:40 AM
Reply #1

siena

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I think it is great that Hagrid is offered the teaching job. He was accused of a crime he didn't commit when he was young and missed out on a proper magical education as a consequence. Basically he was prevented from living his life as a wizard, as he was not allowed to use a wand. I really feel there should have been compensation coming from the Ministry - but I guess they just don't really bother treating a Half Giant fairly. Dumbledore tries to make up for this lack of fair treatment by doing what he can to reinstate Hagrid. Dumbledore really is such a great man, trying to make Hogwarts a place where everyone gets his chances.

Hagrid's first lesson was a great success - the hippogriffs provided just the right challenge for third years in my opinion, and it is clear that Hagrid knows his subject well  -  until that piece of scum called  Draco messed it up for him. Draco should at least have served a detention, if not suspension from lessons, for his unwillingness to listen to instructions given by a teacher. But as always - due to Lucius's influence of course - he gets away with it   :furious:
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March 07, 2014, 08:47:06 PM
Reply #2

roonwit

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Hagrid's first lesson was a great success - the hippogriffs provided just the right challenge for third years in my opinion, and it is clear that Hagrid knows his subject well  -  until that piece of scum called  Draco messed it up for him. Draco should at least have served a detention, if not suspension from lessons, for his unwillingness to listen to instructions given by a teacher. But as always - due to Lucius's influence of course - he gets away with it   :furious:
I think it depends on how you view the lesson as to how successful it is. In terms of subject matter it was very good. However a teacher is also responsible for the safety of his pupils, which includes stopping them getting into danger by doing stupid things. So arguably Hagrid should have made sure Draco understood the danger even if he didn't want to pay attention.
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March 08, 2014, 01:58:10 PM
Reply #3

siena

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I disagree vehemently, roonwit. Hagrid stated explicitly that hippogriffs are proud animals, who take insults as provocation: "Now firs' thing you need to know about hippogriffs, is they're proud" said Hagrid, "Easily offended, hippogriffs are. Don't ever insult one, cause it might be the last thing yeh do."

He also explains it detail how you approach a hippogriff.

He is taking his responsibility for the safety of the class very seriously indeed. And unless you can't understand plain English or like Malfoy you're too arrogant  to listen to a teacher, you get the message.
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March 09, 2014, 05:46:51 PM
Reply #4

roonwit

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I disagree vehemently, roonwit. Hagrid stated explicitly that hippogriffs are proud animals, who take insults as provocation: "Now firs' thing you need to know about hippogriffs, is they're proud" said Hagrid, "Easily offended, hippogriffs are. Don't ever insult one, cause it might be the last thing yeh do."

He also explains it detail how you approach a hippogriff.

He is taking his responsibility for the safety of the class very seriously indeed. And unless you can't understand plain English or like Malfoy you're too arrogant  to listen to a teacher, you get the message.
A good teacher needs to do more than that and allow for the failings of his pupils, for example by watching for students who aren't paying attention, or repeating instructions for those who weren't listening the first time and stress their importance for those who were  - Hagrid could reasonably have reminded his students of the key points what he said earlier after Harry's supervised demonstration before he let the other students loose on the Hippogriffs.
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March 10, 2014, 11:19:57 AM
Reply #5

siena

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Okay, you have a point here. Hagrid could have done what you said. But still I think the students have the responsibility to pay attention and should not be engaged in other activities while the teacher is talking. I don't think it is always that easy for a teacher to notice students who are not focussed, especially if it's a large class they are teaching - and the CoMC class seems to be quite large. But then again Hagrid could have reminded the class beforehand how important it is to pay attention to what he is saying at all times, you're right.
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March 12, 2014, 08:00:30 PM
Reply #6

ss19

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Interesting discussion, siena and roonwit.

I was chatting with another parent the other day and she mentioned her child being a little afraid of the gym teacher at school who's quite stern with the kids.  My response was that I think it's a good thing for a gym teacher to be stern because in gym class if the kids don't pay attention or don't follow the rules, they can easily hurt themselves or hurt other children.  I think this is true for the Care of Magical Creatures class as well, especially when the students are working with potentially dangerous magical creatures who have a mind of their own (unlike gymnastics equipment that are stationary and predictable).

Hagrid, whether he tries to be stern or not, has several factors working against him.  He isn't very confident as a new teacher, and doesn't have the respect of some of his students such as Draco who openly puts him down which might then influence other students to look down on him.  Hagrid never finished his Hogwarts education and isn't even allowed to carry a wand when all the students in his class carry their wands.  This also means that he can't use magic to help in emergencies such as stopping Draco in his tracks when he was approaching Buckbeak without following the rules, or putting up a shield between Draco and Buckbeak.  On top of all these, Hagrid considers a dragon and an acromantula suitable pets, as seen in the first two books.  When he doesn't really believe that these creatures are dangerous, he's probably not going to sound very convincing when he warns the students of the potential dangers.

I think Hagrid is very capable and knowledgeable when it comes to taking care of magical creatures, but when it comes to teaching the subject, it would probably help for him to have an experienced teacher (who's a qualified witch or wizard and can carry a wand) in the classroom to assist or oversee him at least in his first year or two as a new teacher.
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March 12, 2014, 09:54:36 PM
Reply #7

roonwit

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I think Hagrid is very capable and knowledgeable when it comes to taking care of magical creatures, but when it comes to teaching the subject, it would probably help for him to have an experienced teacher (who's a qualified witch or wizard and can carry a wand) in the classroom to assist or oversee him at least in his first year or two as a new teacher.
I agree Hagrid could have done with more guidance on teaching; perhaps by someone watching and giving advice afterwards. If he or she was with or behind the students, she or he could have helped keep discipline merely by being there. Hogwarts doesn't seem to go in for teacher training, and Hagrid isn't the only teacher who could have profited by some helpful advice.
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March 13, 2014, 02:57:21 AM
Reply #8

HealerOne

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I totally agree, roonwit, that many of the teachers at Hogwarts could have used some teacher training! But where would magical teachers get training? I mean - can you envision Snape or Trelawney at a regular University learning how to do daily lesson plans?  :hmm: As much difficulty as DD had in getting DADA teachers - one can understand that it must be ridiculously difficult to fulfill teaching positions for such a specialized school as Hogwarts. I think the only way one could do so would be to have mentors among the more experienced staff. In addition - sorry all you lovers of DD - the headmaster really should be visiting those classrooms and have some influence on how and what they teach. (But please - NOT like Deloris!)  Realistically I don't have any idea how this would be done as the teachers all seemed to be caring a pretty heavy load - where would they find the time to mentor someone? So the ideal obviously is not happening and - just like a lot of things - they have relied on tradition which as we knows goes waaaay back in time when people just got up and taught the best way they knew how! So that seems to be the way Hagrid sort of got slotted into CoMC. I actually thought he did a pretty darn good job in that the lesson plan was well thought out. His execution of the plan was what was a problem! I agree he needed to be more aware of who was listening and that he should have reminded the class repeatedly of the volatility of the animals/birds they were handling.
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March 13, 2014, 11:54:27 AM
Reply #9

siena

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I agree as well that Hagrid could benefit from some support.
I also think that he should be offered some magical education to make up from what he missed in his youth. On the other hand he seems to do well for himself even without a wand - he is very brave and can handle tricky situations on his own, as we see in OoTP, where he stops a herd of livid centaurs from committing murder. Furthermore I think the fact that he doesn't carry a wand in class doesn't make much of a difference - the children might be allowed to carry their wands, but they are not allowed to use it in class (and elsewhere really) without the teacher's permission. So Hagrid's lack of a wand doesn't really decrease his authority. I also think that the incident with Malfoy and Buckbeak happened within a matter of seconds - and there probably wouldn't have been enough time for Hagrid to intervene with a spell, even if he had a wand. Had he had enough time to intervene, I'm sure he would have prevented Buckbeak from attacking in the same brave way he prevented the centaurs from attacking Firenze.
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March 13, 2014, 12:34:24 PM
Reply #10

atschpe

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For me the question of could he have intervened or not, is more a question of where is his focus/mind. At the moment I only have the film version in my mind (been a while since I've read the book, sorry) but there he is chatting with Harry and not paying much attention to what the others are doing. With just a bit of guidance or training under his belt, he would know that chats are for after class. Not only does it distract him from taking care that everything is going to plan, but I wouldn't be surprised that a Draco might even consciously go against the rules he just received because the teacher is seemingly playing favourites with one or more students. Whilst Hagrid is great with animals, he lacks a bit in his grasp of how humans tick.
"Of course it is all in your head, but why on Earth should that mean it isn't real?" ~Dumbledore (DH)
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March 13, 2014, 12:42:53 PM
Reply #11

siena

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Well, atschpe, films and books are quite different matters that shouldn't get confused here really.

In the book, he is not chatting, but giving instructions. He is instructing the class how to approach the creatures, to be aware that they are proud and attack if provoked. Then Harry volunteers to have a go with Buckbeak, and Hagrid consequently gives him some more instructions. Buckbeak lets Harry ride him, and the class feels emboldened by Harry's success and they have a go with the different hippogriffs. No chatting with Harry.
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March 13, 2014, 01:30:37 PM
Reply #12

atschpe

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Siena, hence why I prefaced that I haven't read the section in a while. I know there are many differences from small to big – but could only go on what I remember, the book being out of reach.

I get the impression of Hagrid being less teacher and more friends with Harry and his friends – to skip forward: in GoF Hagrid and Harry have a chat whilst the rest of the class is "walking" the Skrewts. With the Hippogriff class Harry is singled out to try first – to a Draco this can look like bing singled out as a favourite – and then he gets to watch the others – that's in the book to, right? It's common knowledge that Hagrid is friends with him and his teaching style just affirms this to those who want to see this. But according to your helpful summary, we don't know if Hagrid is fully observing all students or might be distracted in some way or form when Draco decides to taunt a Hippogriff.
"Of course it is all in your head, but why on Earth should that mean it isn't real?" ~Dumbledore (DH)
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March 13, 2014, 02:14:13 PM
Reply #13

siena

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Harry isn't singled out by Hagrid - Harry just happens to be the only one who volunteers. Hagrid isn't showing any favouritism here at all I find. Harry is the only one who volunteers and Hagrid accordingly picks him.

And you are quite right - Draco decides to taunt a hippogriff, despite the fact that his teacher explicitly told him not to. It was Draco's decision not to listen to his teacher. And as far as I remember it from my time at school, my parents told me beforehand that it is quite important to listen to a teacher in class. My teachers made me aware of this fact in my first year at school. Draco is now in his third year at school - he should be well aware of these basic rules. Yet he chooses not to listen - because his father suggested to him that some teachers (Dumbledore for example - Draco chooses not to listen to him either in GoF - and Hagrid for example) are worth less than others (Snape).

Just some food for thought.
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March 14, 2014, 04:24:26 PM
Reply #14

paint it Black

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1) McGonagall, Trelawney, Ron and Hermione all have different takes on omens and the Grim. Whose opinion has the most effect on Harry?


I think that with everything that was going on at the time with Aunt Marge and running out on the Dursleys, Harry may have been able to mostly forget about that big black dog in Magnolia Crescent had it not been for that book on death omens that he saw in Flourish and Blotts.  However, he soon learns that a mass murderer is after him, and then a (supposed) Seer whom he's just met sees a large black dog in his tea leaves.  Normally I think Harry would not put a lot of stock in something like tea leaves (and Hermione clearly shows that she thinks that there is nothing to it), but combined with the other things he's starting to worry a little.  I think what really shores him up is when Professor McGonagall tells him that not only does she not think much at all of Divination, but that Trelawney's first lesson every year involves a death prediction.  I think Harry sees McGonagall as one of the smartest and most trustworthy adults he knows, so he gives her opinion the most weight, especially since it supports what seems to be the most logical conclusion (and probably is what he'd most like to hear :whew:).  However, he also trusts Ron as his insider source on what life is really like in the wizarding world, so after he hears about Ron's uncle Bilius, he's not willing to let go of the Grim idea completely.

Cuppa is discussing Harper Lee's Go Set a Watchman.  Please join us!
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March 15, 2014, 12:05:59 PM
Reply #15

siena

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And I agree with paint it Black's assessment below. Harry normally isn't superstitious or anything but there was just too much coincidence for his liking about the appearances of a shaggy black dog, I think I would have felt the same way. But, as you said, McGonnagal clears things up a bit with her quite funny remark that he needn't hand in homework in case he dies  ;D
« Last Edit: March 16, 2014, 07:19:34 PM by atschpe »
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April 20, 2014, 09:14:30 AM
Reply #16

Evreka

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1) McGonagall, Trelawney, Ron and Hermione all have different takes on omens and the Grim. Whose opinion has the most effect on Harry?
I don't think Harry is influenced very much by any of them, certainly not by Trelawney!  :trelawney: I think he always uses his own common sense and that that tally most with Hermione's and McGonagall's point of view.

I think what really shores him up is when Professor McGonagall tells him that not only does she not think much at all of Divination, but that Trelawney's first lesson every year involves a death prediction.  I think Harry sees McGonagall as one of the smartest and most trustworthy adults he knows, so he gives her opinion the most weight, especially since it supports what seems to be the most logical conclusion (and probably is what he'd most like to hear :whew:). 
Yes, this argument really shows what Trelawney is made of... and that Harry doesn't have any immediate reason to worry because of the prediction.

However, he also knows that Sirius Black is after him, and putting those things together with each other and the stray in Magnolia Crescent, it would have been understandable if he might not be able to shake the worry off completely. However, in all the book he doesn't ever seems particularly worried about Black - or indeed the tea leaf prediction. He's considerably more worried over, and annoyed over, the effect it has on the adults around him, and how the danger he is in  stops him from having great adventures. BOYS!  :fredgeorge:
 

3) Take a look at all of those predictions made by Trelawney. What’s she right about? What is she completely off the mark about?
I definitely agree with Albus, later on. This lady has two true predictions and a lot of pretends...

And the most despicable thing about her, is I think, her custom to welcome new classes:
Quote from:  McGonagall, POA Chapter 6
I see. Then you should know, Potter, that Sibyll Trelawney has predicted the death of one student a year since she arrived at this school. None of them has died yet. Seeing death omens is her favorite way of greeting a new class. If it were not for the fact that I never speak ill of my colleagues -
How very charming.... NOT!  :furious:


However, I think this prediction and its aftermath in the quoted Transfiguration class is a masterpiece of Jo's jigsaw plots! It allows her to put in the following in a very unobtrusive way:
Quote from: POA Chapter 6
He hardly heard what Professor McGonagall was telling them about Animagi (wizards who could transform at will into animals), and wasn't even watching when she transformed herself in front of their eyes into a tabby cat with spectacle markings around her eyes.
Who would ever have thought that this all but hidden sentence, squashed in among all tension for Harry's destiny, hardly drawing a glance, and much less any particular attention, would be the most important foundation for most of the further plot, both in POA and forwards!?  :owlso:

In all honesty, did you pay any attention to this sentence when you read POA the first time?



2) What did you think about Dumbledore’s decision to hire Hagrid to teach Care of Magical Creatures? What did you think about that first lesson?
I loved that Hagrid was "compensated" thus for the error of his expulsion from Hogwarts, but seeing how he taught classes over the years I used to wonder that there was not more opposition, even outcries, against him as a Professor, particularly after the Skrewts in GOF. But then I got The Tales of Beedle the Bard, and in one of the comments we learn about some of his predecessors choices and their consequences, and in comparison Hagrid seems like a careful and insightful teacher....  :devil:


I think it is great that Hagrid is offered the teaching job. He was accused of a crime he didn't commit when he was young and missed out on a proper magical education as a consequence. Basically he was prevented from living his life as a wizard, as he was not allowed to use a wand. I really feel there should have been compensation coming from the Ministry - but I guess they just don't really bother treating a Half Giant fairly.
To be fair we don't know in what way the wizarding community tackled this revelation, seeing as we only know things that Harry know (at least this far into the series). I can agree that Hagrid might have acknowledged a recognition from the MoM to Harry, but I can also see how his becomming CoMC Professor was what mattered most to Hagrid so that was what he told Harry about.

Further, as developed as all of Jo's characters are, there are of course a limit beyond which we don't know what happens to the secondary characters in their own lives. And I can also see any such results of clearing Hagrid's name, falling away from making it into the story, due to this.


I agree with siena that the hippogriff lesson was interesting and would have been great, had Draco listened, and with roonwit (and later siena) in that a teacher also needs to make sure students do not come to harm; however arrogant, stupid, nervous or frightened they are.

I don't think it is always that easy for a teacher to notice students who are not focussed, especially if it's a large class they are teaching - and the CoMC class seems to be quite large. But then again Hagrid could have reminded the class beforehand how important it is to pay attention to what he is saying at all times, you're right.
It seems to me that all Houses have 10 students in Harry's year, and in the books, CoMC is treated as if all Gryffindors and all Slytherins chose it, so it seems he has 20 students. Twenty might still be a bit many to keep an eye on and he didn't have 20 hippogriffs anyway, so a more reasonable approach would have been to ask as many students as there were hippogriffs to come forward so he could keep an eye on all of them. Preferably have them repeat his instructions back to him before they started so he knew they had listened, I think. :)


Hagrid never finished his Hogwarts education and isn't even allowed to carry a wand ...  This also means that he can't use magic to help in emergencies such as stopping Draco in his tracks when he was approaching Buckbeak without following the rules, or putting up a shield between Draco and Buckbeak. 
Well, Draco approaches Buckbeak in precisely the right way, and has already been accepted by him so that he now is allowed to pat him, when he suddenly insults him:

Quote from:  POA Chapter 6
Malfoy, Crabbe, and Goyle had taken over Buckbeak. He had bowed to Malfoy, who was now patting his beak, looking disdainful.
"This is very easy," Malfoy drawled, loud enough for Harry to, hear him. "I knew it must have been, if Potter could do it.... I bet you're not dangerous at all, are you?" he said to the hippogriff. "Are you, you great ugly brute?"
So obviously Draco has heard at least some part of what Hagrid has said (about how to approach), and further, it can't have been easy to step in between them in a flash of a second. Hagrid does take care of Buckbeak immediately, and I'm not sure how much a wand would have helped. In other situations people can not always intervene for the risk of hitting the wrong part.


I think Hagrid is very capable and knowledgeable when it comes to taking care of magical creatures, but when it comes to teaching the subject, it would probably help for him to have an experienced teacher (who's a qualified witch or wizard and can carry a wand) in the classroom to assist or oversee him at least in his first year or two as a new teacher.
I agree Hagrid could have done with more guidance on teaching; perhaps by someone watching and giving advice afterwards. If he or she was with or behind the students, she or he could have helped keep discipline merely by being there. Hogwarts doesn't seem to go in for teacher training, and Hagrid isn't the only teacher who could have profited by some helpful advice.
:lol: You could say that again! How many truly good teachers are there at Hogwarts? There are a few, but then there are much of the opposite also, and I think Hagrid is far from the worst!


Harry isn't singled out by Hagrid - Harry just happens to be the only one who volunteers. Hagrid isn't showing any favouritism here at all I find. Harry is the only one who volunteers and Hagrid accordingly picks him.
I agree, my thoughts too.


« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 09:25:10 AM by Evreka »
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