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Social Studies Biographies
|edHelper's suggested reading level:||grades 4 to 6|
|Flesch-Kincaid grade level:||5.67|
By Jennifer Kenny
1 There probably aren't many people in the world who aren't familiar with the Harry Potter series of books. But just how much do you know about the author, J.K. Rowling?
2 This author was born in Chipping Sodbury, England, on July 31, 1965. Does July 31 ring a bell? True Harry Potter fans will recognize the date as Harry Potter's birthday, too. Jo Rowling's given name at birth was Joanne Rowling. Her family called her Jo.
3 Jo's family consisted of her mother, her father, and her younger sister, Di. Her father worked on airplane engines for Rolls Royce.
4 As a child, Jo fought a lot with her sister Di, but, of course, loved her dearly. Jo remembers constantly telling Di many of the stories she created.
5 While Jo was young, her family moved to Yate and then Winterbourne. She remembers enjoying making pottery, drawing, and writing stories. The first story she ever wrote was about a rabbit with measles. While in Winterbourne, Jo played with friends whose surname was Potter. She obviously liked the name a lot and remembered to use it later in her famous series.
6 Jo describes herself as shy and freckly. She claims she had no athletic ability, but she always loved literature. One of her favorite books was C.S. Lewis's The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.
7 Around Jo's 9th birthday, her family moved to Tutshill. This provided their family with a country setting, but she was not as happy with school there. At age eleven, Jo started secondary school. She did very well academically. She was actually the top girl in her class during her senior year. She sometimes compares herself to Hermione Granger, a very studious friend of Harry Potter in the series. During secondary school, Jo enjoyed English and foreign languages.
8 Earlier in secondary school, Jo met a very special friend named Sean Harris. He was one of the first of her friends that was able to drive. He had a Ford Anglia. He listened to Jo talk and believed in her dream to become an author. His car and his friendship were such an influence on her that she dedicated Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets to him.
9 After secondary school, Jo went to the University of Exeter to study French. She graduated in 1986.
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