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General Information

Post by Anahera King on Mon Nov 16, 2015 3:55 pm

THE BASICS

  • Huatahi is a magic school located inside the seaward Kaikoura mountain range in New Zealand.
  • Magical residents of New Zealand and the Polynesian and Melanesian islands automatically receive an acceptance letter for the year in which they will turn 13. The school is open to residents of other countries, but they must apply to Huatahi themselves.
  • The school year starts on 15 January and ends on 30 November. Those in the northern hemisphere: keep in mind that the seasons are reversed.
  • You are currently allowed to start in 1st or 4th year.

INDEX


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School history

Post by Anahera King on Wed Nov 25, 2015 7:50 pm


Huatahi’s history is a long one. It is suspected that the school was founded in the 11th century by early Maori settlers. Little is known about the founders, only that they were three siblings called Poi, Ngaire and Erihapeti. The original location for the school was what is now the magical town of Tainui, some 50 kilometers south of the current school. It was a headmistress by the name of Awhina who brought the school to the Kaikoura mountain range in the early 15th century, for more privacy and protection.

The arrival of the first European Muggles in the late 17th century brought about the creation of a small magical community of European wizards and witches, mainly concentrated on the North Island. They soon founded their own school to educate their children, despite an invitation by Kahurangi the Generous, Huatahi’s Headmaster at the time, for these so-called “settlers” to send their children to Huatahi instead. Kahurangi had thought the magical community above the petty discriminatory views of their Muggle counterparts, but the European wixen1 proved weary of the Maori and their noticeably different magical practices.  

And so it was that for another century, Huatahi remained a school for native students only, even though relations with the Europeans improved over the years. The decades after the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi were marked with distrust, as the conflicts that arose between Muggles over the interpretation of the treaty with regard to land ownership could not be ignored by New Zealand’s magical community. Luckily, however, wixen on both sides of the conflict were able to put their differences aside earlier than their Muggle counterparts, and communication and cooperation between the two schools began to improve by the end of the 18th century. Guest lectures were introduced as early as 1889, and in 1902, a yearly week-long exchange program for last-year students was established.

It was Headmaster Kauri Roimata who finally reached an agreement with the heads of the European school in 1921 to unify their establishments. Because it was an older, larger and more secluded location, the Europeans moved to the mountain range where Huatahi was located. The building would be expanded to accommodate the new arrivals, and both cultures and their teachings would be represented and taught to all students.
1gender-neutral term for wizards and witches. Singular is wix.

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Location and description

Post by Anahera King on Wed Nov 25, 2015 8:05 pm


Huatahi is located in the seaward Kaikoura mountain range, in the north-east of New Zealand’s South Island. It is situated entirely within the mountains, and from the outside, the school would be fairly innocuous even without magical protection. The only indications that this was no mere mountain range would be the windows, an occasional chimney, and a long set of stairs carved into the mountain and leading to the school entrance. However, as there are several Muggle towns with a view of the Kaikoura mountain range, it was necessary under the International Statute of Secrecy to magically conceal these details so that its appearance to Muggles remained that of a simple natural phenomenon.

Out of a desire not to distance themselves from non-magical folk any more than absolutely necessary, it was decided that Muggle-repelling charms would only be used on the areas of the mountain that needed to be concealed. To this day, the mountains that house the school can be climbed by adventurous Muggles, who fearfully avoid areas with windows and other indicators of life within the mountains out of a perceived sense of immense danger. This decision has sparked much debate, and still remains a source of controversy.

On the inside, Huatahi Magic School is made almost entirely out of stone. Some parts have been so delicately carved out of the inside of the mountain that one could easily forget they were not in any regular building. Other parts of the school remain more rough and natural-looking, with some rooms having an almost cave-like appearance.

The school building stretches out from the north-east to the south-west, with the entrance hall located nearly in the centre. It consists of only four floors, but they are all relatively vast. The lowest and largest floor, somewhat deceivingly called the basement because of its location relative to the entrance hall, houses the student and staff sleeping quarters. There is no gendered division on this floor, but all individual rooms are same-gender. There are three students per room, and generally they will all be in different years. The ground floor contains the entrance hall, the dining room and kitchen, an enormous library, and various club rooms. On the first floor, students may find the classrooms for most of their practical subjects, as well as the hospital wing. The second floor is the smallest, but also by far the brightest of the school, with every room having at least one window. It contains the classrooms for mainly theoretical subjects.

Most of student life takes place inside the privacy of the mountain, but a section of the nearby river that runs between the seaward and inland Kaikoura range has also been concealed from Muggles, to allow students the opportunity to relax by the waterside as well as take some classes outside.

Inhabitants of the mountain may reach the river by exiting the mountain through its only entrance and taking the main stairs down until they reach a rocky path down to the widest part of the river. There is a moderately-sized, elliptical island on the river, easily accessible by a stone bridge. The large greenhouse and the adjacent barn housing a variety of animals are the location for most of the Nature Studies classes, and there is an aviary with crows, ravens and pigeons that are free to be used by any student or staff member to send letters or parcels. On the grassy, tree-dotted meadows that comprise the rest of the island, there is a rugby field and a makeshift Quidditch pitch where first-year Flying Lessons take place. It is notably smaller than an official Quidditch field, and contains nothing more than the scoring rings and a series of lines on the ground to mark the edges of the field and the scoring area.

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School uniform

Post by Anahera King on Wed Nov 25, 2015 9:10 pm


source

The basic Huatahi School Uniform consists of a plain black robe and a coloured belt. For cold weather, a black cloak is included, as well as a green and brown scarf. Shoes must be a neutral colour, but the model may be chosen freely by the students. Accessories are allowed, as long as they are not distracting during class.

The colour of the belt reflects the student’s year:
1st year: white
2nd year: yellow
3rd year: green
4th year: blue
5th year: brown
6th year: red

First years receive their belt during the welcoming feast on the first day of school. Others receive their new belt over summer break by crow post, along with their grade sheet, to mark that they have passed their year.

The school rules state that students must wear their school uniform at all times during school hours. They are free to wear the clothing of their choice on weekdays after all classes have ended (17:00) and all day on weekends, as long as this clothing can reasonably be deemed age-appropriate and inoffensive.

All students taking Muggle studies, as well as anyone in 4th through 6th year who wants to visit the nearby Muggle town of Kaikoura during weekends, must own a set of Muggle clothes, consisting of a plain t-shirt in any colour, a sweater in a matching colour, a black or grey coat, and trousers or a skirt in a neutral colour. Students are reminded that skirts are traditionally worn only by Muggle women, and male-presenting students choosing to wear this item of clothing may therefore receive the occasional befuddled glance from non-magical residents.

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Academic calendar

Post by Anahera King on Wed Nov 25, 2015 11:29 pm

First week of December: reception of invitation letter or proof of having passed exams

15 January: start of the school year
Info:
At noon, students travel by floo powder to a cabin near the river Clarence (first year muggle students are accompanied by a teacher or other staff member). There, several large canoes are waiting to transport them the last few hundred metres to the school entrance, where there will be a welcoming feast.

Easter Sunday: large easter hunt on the island

Easter Monday: there are no classes on this day

Second week of April: autumn break

First and second week of July: winter break.
Info:
Students can opt to spend these weeks at home.

First week of October: spring break

31 October: evening Halloween celebration
Info:
Classes take place as scheduled, but school uniforms are not required and students are encouraged to dress up.

Second and third week of November: exams

30 November: closing feast and start of summer break

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Subjects and schedules

Post by Anahera King on Thu Nov 26, 2015 12:43 am

First- to third-year students have mostly obligatory subjects. This allows them to gain basic knowledge on as many topics of magical study as possible, and to make an informed decision on which subjects to pursue in the crucial last half of their secondary education.

The subjects for 1st- through 3rd-years are:

Magical Introduction
This subject is obligatory for students who are unacquainted with magical society. It offers an introduction to the culture and daily life of wixen in New Zealand, such as the laws and structures of magical government, common magical items and the main forms of transport and communication among wixen. This class aims to bring Muggleborns and certain halfbloods up to speed about general knowledge that may seem self-evident to those who grew up with magical parents.

Muggle Studies
This subject is obligatory for students who are unacquainted with Muggle society. It deals with a wide range of subjects relating to Muggle society, traditions and customs. A great deal of time is spent on Muggle history and the various ingenious ways in which they have managed to cope without magic, but students will also learn about essentials such as Muggle clothing, travelling methods, hobbies and recreation, etc. This subject also includes immersive field trips to nearby Muggle towns.

History
This subject deals with the magical history of New Zealand, its neighbouring countries, and important events on a global scale. Important historical events in Muggle history are treated if they have a relevance to magical society.

Practical Magic
As the name suggests, this subject deals with all forms of magic that are used on a regular basis by all members of magical society. Students will learn useful spells to keep a house clean and tidy, prepare dinner by use of magic, fix broken objects and many more practical and efficient ways to run a household. They will also learn basic Muggle-repelling charms and other ways to avoid detection, and will get acquainted with common magical items and taught how to enchant their own.

Healing Magic
This subject covers potions, ointments, spells, charms and talismans to cure illnesses and treat injuries.

Nature Studies
This subject uses a mainly hands-on approach to teach students how to take care of a variety of plants and magical creatures. They will also learn how to safely harvest potential potion ingredients and which species to absolutely avoid.

Transfiguration
Students will learn to use spells and potions to transfigure inanimate objects as well as animals so as to alter their colour, size or shape, or change them into something else entirely.

Defensive Magic
This subject teaches students how to defend themselves against dark magic with the help of spells, potions, talismans and runes. They will also learn of the protective qualities of certain tattoos, but those will not be treated in any practical form.

Predictive Magic
Students attempt to discover if they have the sight by studying tea leaves and crystal balls, but even those without it could learn to make accurate predictions with the help of runes, tarot cards, certain herbs and a good understanding of stellar and planetary movements.

Magical Theory
Some students think that this is the most boring subject taught at Huatahi, but what could be more interesting than learning about everything that is known about magic, how it works and how it can be harnessed? Who would want to catch up on sleep when you can find out how wands and talismans help to conduct magic or why spells work more easily when you say them aloud?

Flying (elective)
This subject is for first-year students who want to learn how to ride a broom. It teaches technique, broom maintenance and safety precautions. Only students who have taken this course are allowed to have their own broom on school grounds.

Visual Arts (elective)
Students who choose to take Huatahi’s only art class will practice painting, wood carving and sculpting, among others.

-----------------------

Students who enter their fourth year must choose which subjects they wish to keep and which they will drop. Four subjects remain obligatory, and each student must choose at least three electives.

Two new classes are also introduced:

Magical Research and Creation
This subject is a follow-up course to Magical Theory. Students use the knowledge they have gained from this previous subject to attempt to create new spells, potions, talismans and magical objects.

Human Transformation
Students who take this subject will first learn the theory of human transformation, and will then apply this knowledge to attempt partial or complete self-transformation. Those who prove they have the aptitude and determination can learn to become animagi.

The obligatory subjects for 4th- through 6th-years are:

  • History
  • Practical Magic
  • Transfiguration
  • Magical Research and Creation

The electives are:

  • Human Transformation
  • Muggle Studies
  • Healing Magic
  • Nature Studies
  • Defensive Magic
  • Predictive Magic
  • Visual Arts


Click here for class schedules.

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Student Clubs

Post by Anahera King on Mon Nov 30, 2015 4:47 pm

Extracurricular activities are an important part of student life at Huatahi. There are numerous student clubs of various natures and on a wide variety of topics. Students are encouraged to join any clubs they want, as long as they meet the potential age and subject requirements.

The list of clubs can be found here and will be updated as new ones are created:

Duelling Club
Years 4, 5 and 6 (must be taking Defensive Magic)
Meets Wednesdays and Saturdays
By far the largest and most popular club at Huatahi, the Duelling Club combines European wand duelling and Maori taiaha duelling. There are two club presidents, each skilled at one of the two disciplines, who train twice a week with interested students. Wand duelling consists of spellwork, both verbal and non-verbal, practiced on dummies and other students, as well as learning proper forms and procedures. Taiaha duelling might seem a little intimidating to those who watch the demonstration given at the beginning of each school year. The magic of the taiaha, a close-quarters staff, is to be used non-verbally, in combination with combat, and relies more on movement than speech. It is a very intensive form of duelling, as it requires much concentration and inner strength. Members can choose if they want to learn only one or both of the duelling styles.

Huatahi Rugby Team
All years, but 1st- to 3rd-years cannot participate in the broom-mounted variant
Meets Fridays for all years, Sundays for years 4 to 6
Rugby enthusiasts meet twice a week on the island. Most sessions consist of a training element, where new techniques and strategies are learnt, and old ones are brushed up on, followed by an actual game of rugby in one of three variants. The first is the Muggle variant, generally played more towards the start of the school year to allow new members to grasp the rules of the game. The second is exactly the same, only it allows students to use wand magic during the game. The last is a broom-mounted variation, which, due to its added level of danger, is not open to students under year 4 and is therefore only played on Sundays.

Maori Language Association
All years
Meets Mondays and Thursdays
This club was started 28 years ago out of a small group of students’ desire to keep the Maori language alive. It has grown exponentially over the years, and is now one of the larger clubs at Huatahi. It is led by students, as all clubs are, but in recent years, most sessions are assisted by Ms Ngata, who is fluent in te reo Māori. Haere mai!

Survivalism and Mountaineering Club
All years
Meets Sundays
This club meets only once a week, but most sessions take up half the day, as they usually consist of hiking and mountain-climbing. During those activities, members apply survival techniques and learn about native plants and animals of the region. The school requires all members to wear Muggle clothes during their weekly meetings, unless they stay exclusively on the island or by the river's edge near the school entrance.


There is also a small but very devoted club of Gobstones enthusiasts, a book club and a Chocolate Frog Card Collector’s League. (Proper descriptions will follow if enough students sign up for them.)

Students who wish to create a new club must submit the proper form to a staff member:
Code:
[b]Club name:[/b]
[b]Club description:[/b]
[b]Club leader:[/b]
[b]Club members:[/b] (at least 5, including the club leader)
[b]Proposed meeting days:[/b]

This is also how it works OOC (Out of Character); if you want to create a new club, PM a staff member with the above information and it will be discussed. If you do not already have 5 members, a notice will be posted to allow others to sign up. A subforum will be opened as soon as the club reaches five members.

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