Lesson 1) Spic and Span

Welcome my dear and wonderful students to another year of Charms! As I am sure you all know by now, I am Professor Cassandra Virneburg and I will be guiding your educational journey into Charms. As always I can be reached on site via owl post. I welcome all questions and feedback regarding the lesson as long as they are presented respectfully. A list of my PAs can be found here should you ever need assistance and I am unavailable! Let’s get some of the administrative things out of the way first so we can dive right into the magic, shall we?

As with every year, I expect all students to treat myself, my assistants, and their fellow students with respect. Cursing, pornographic imagery, age-inappropriate behaviors, and disrespect will not be tolerated in this course. Any assignments submitted with the above will be given a failing grade and cannot be retaken. I will only issue this warning once. This year we will also be grading with higher standards than in previous years, so read prompts very carefully. At this stage in your magical career, I expect eloquent, detailed essays. Short answers should be given in full sentences in your own words. I want to know your answer to the question, not what I said about it directly from the lesson. Essays are also graded on the effort you put into them. Meeting minimum requirements will not earn you 100% anymore. Don’t be discouraged though. I know all of you can exceed these expectations!

Following is an outline of your fifth year of Charms. Please take a look at what we will be learning this year!





Household Charms

Scouring Charm, Washing Up Spell, Cleaning Charm


Home Protection (Muggle)

Muggle Repelling Charm, Hidden Homes Charm


Home Protection (Magical)

Anti-Apparition Jinx, Hex Deflection Charm, Unplottability


Home Protection (Magical)

Caterwauling Charm, Barrier Charm


Home Protection (Intruders)

Intruder Charm, Hominem Revelio


Home Protection

Summary of Spells, Fidelius Charm


Moving Amongst Muggles

Undetectable Extension Charm, Muffliato, Disillusionment Charm


Simplifying Wand Movements

Bubble Head Charm, Bluebell Flames, Erecting Charm


Just For Fun

Final, Review

Hiccough Cure, Knitting Charm


I am very excited about this year and hope you are too! Today’s lesson will be a bit shorter and less in depth than future lessons just to help you all get back in the groove of class. These are some of the most useful spells you will learn, so when better to learn them than now! And so, without further ado, let’s get started!

Magic has been used in homes since the days of their creation. The beauty of magic is how neat and simple it can make completing small tasks. Household charms are some of the best examples of this. Many of us can remember as children watching our mothers wave their wands to put the washing away, or cleaning the owl cage with a flick of her wrist. Muggleborn students will surely know the feeling of wishing they could magic their chores to completion before they were aware of their powers. The charms we will be learning today can be used throughout your daily life for these very things. I use them frequently to clean my home so that I can have more time for my hobbies! While there are dozens of household charms, we will be focusing on the ones I find I use most often. The beauty of the spells you learn today is that they can be adapted for many, many household chores, which we will discuss in just a moment.

There are many cleaning charms in use in the world today, so many that we simply cannot cover them all here in class! However, we will touch on a few of the most frequently used ones. Please keep in mind that while you can try to adapt these spells to uses other than those described, variations of each of these spells do exist that can help tailor them to whatever you are cleaning at the moment.

Think of your least favorite household chore. One that just makes your skin crawl when you even consider doing it. For me, that chore is washing dishes! So this first spell we are learning has to be a favorite of mine because I no longer need to wash my dishes by hand. Now, the Washing Up Spell, as it is often called, was first used in 1453 by a witch named Emmaline Tewkes working in the King’s household. Tired of doing all the cleaning when the less responsible kitchen staff was away enjoying the revelry, Tewkes decided to use her magic to help complete the hundreds of dishes generated during the feasts. And thus, the Washing Up Spell was born! Spell details are as follows:

Incantation: Lavarops (luh-VARR-ops)
Wand Movement: A flick of the wrist towards the dishes to be washed, following by a small clockwise circle.
Willpower: Moderate; Must be increased for more stubborn messes.
Concentration: Low; Cast the spell with the clean dishes in mind.
Category: Static

The incantation for this spell is derived from a combination of the Latin words for wash and dish. The two words are rather lengthy on their own, so this shorter version allows the spell to be done more quickly when in a hurry. The wand movement reflects the motion of grabbing and scrubbing a dish. More advanced casters can eliminate the circle at the end of the movement, but this can take some time. Willpower is used to scrub the caked food and other debris away, so worse messes mean more willpower. A lack of willpower will result in dishes that are only partially cleaned.

The Washing Up Charm is a variation of the Scouring Charm that we have all seen our parents use over and over again. This charm may sound familiar, and that’s because you learned about the Scouring Charm in Care of Magical Creatures and Charms during your fourth year! Just to refresh your memory, the Scouring Charm is a general cleaning spell that is typically used to get rid of some unwanted substance. In Care of Magical Creatures, you used it to clear out a Bundimun infestation! It can also be used to clean any undesired substance from a surface. It should not be used on humans or other living creatures, though, as it will cause soap bubbles to come from the mouth.

The final cleaning charm we will talk about is often considered to be the root of all cleaning charms, hence its name - the Cleaning Charm! Easy enough to remember, right?

Incantation: Tergeo
Wand Movement: Point wand at the object.
Willpower: Low to medium depending upon the viscosity of the liquid.
Concentration: The object you wish to remove liquid from. Visualize the liquid being siphoned from the object.
Category: Static

This spell is a bit more complicated than the Washing Up Spell. This is the earliest incarnation of a cleaning spell, hence the more crude components to it. The earliest recorded version of this spell, with this incantation, was in 1293 by French Potioneer Phillippe Bourgogne. Bourgogne hated to let his wife, a Muggle, into his lab as he was worried she could be injured or accidentally ruin a brewing potion. However he also hated to clean. Wanting to make the job as easy as possible for himself, Bourgogne turned spell inventor and created the Cleaning Charm! According to the International Statute of Secrecy, this spell receives the lightest punishment if accidentally used in front of Muggles.

I will give all of you some time to practice these spells now. There are some dirty dishes up here at the front of the classroom that the House Elves were kind enough to provide us from lunch. Everyone please take a few and get started. There are plenty of plates here, so please practice as much as you like! Be very careful though you will all be eating off of these plates in a few hours at dinner!

On your way out please make sure to pick up an assignment and take note of the prompt for this week’s essay. Keep in mind our new expectations for the quality of your work when working on your assignments this week. I look forward to seeing you all again next class!

Image credit: HP Wiki

Charms Year Five will discuss more practical areas of spellcasting that can be used on your home. We will discuss ways of keeping your home safe as well as touch upon methods of keeping yourself safe from intruders. We will end the year discussing methods of keeping yourself hidden in the Muggle world and touch upon some more advanced spellcasting. This year of Charms aims to prepare you for your OWLs at the end of the year.
Course Prerequisites:
  • CHRM-401

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