Books

J.K. Rowling launches new Harry Potter At Home online platform for children and families

The online hub will feature content and activities for fans and first-time readers of the series to access in self-isolation during the global coronavirus pandemic.
J.K. Rowling's latest initiative is Harry Potter at Home, an online platform for fans and first-time readers alike. (CBC)

J.K. Rowling has launched an online hub called Harry Potter At Home for children and families to access in self-isolation during the global coronavirus pandemic.

Harry Potter At Home, created in partnership with Audible, Bloomsbury, OverDrive, Pottermore Publishing and Scholastic, is an online platform for younger children to explore the Wizarding World of Harry Potter – independently or reading and listening together with their families.

According to the site, the hub will feature contributions from Bloomsbury and Scholastic, magical craft videos, articles, quizzes, a weekly email newsletter, puzzles and other activities for fans of the series and first-time readers. 

"The teachers, parents and carers working to keep children's lives as normal and happy as possible while we're all on lockdown deserve a bit of magic," Rowling said in a statement Wednesday. "I hope these initiatives will give children and even adults a happy distraction during their enforced stay-at-home time."

The platform will also host Wizarding Wednesdays on the site and via social media every week to offer more activities for parents and carers.

As part of the launch, Audible has made the Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone audiobook available for free on its newly-launched Audible Stories collection, a database of free audiobooks for children and teenagers.

Children can stream the book in English, Spanish, French, Italian, German and Japanese, on desktop, laptop, phone or tablet.

Stephen Fry will perform the English language version, for the first time in Canada. 

No log-in or registration is required to access the free story.

With files from the Associated Press.

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