Lesson 2 - Safety in the Alchemy Field
Great job on getting to your second lesson! As you can see from the first lesson, there is much more to alchemy than you probably thought there was. Just a reminder - if you have any questions about the course, please contact me via email or owl. My email will be listed on the main page of this course for any and all students.
Also, for students who have taken other courses you are aware that we have Non-English speakers as well as students with learning disabilities. If this is your case, please make sure to inform me, not a Professor's Assistant. When submitting your paper, I will ask you to put “LD” for learning disability or “NES” for Non-English speaker. This exempts you from being graded based upon your grammar, and instead only being graded on the content of the paper.
Whenever you are dealing with dangerous chemicals or any type of laboratory assignment, safety is very important to make sure you and the others around you won't get injured. That's why today we will be talking about safety, the necessary tools you will need, and what to do in an emergency.
What do I need?
To be successful in this course, you will need the following items:
The reason you need these items is obvious. These are required so that you may practice alchemy with minimal casualties. Some of the chemicals we will be working with can be very dangerous. It's important to use caution when dealing with any laboratory work or you might end up on the way to St. Mungo's.
Wand: You will need this to practice transmuting spells. This will be essential for the course, as it is with most of your other courses. Wands will help establish any magical ailments in the chemicals or elements. They are essential for most productive magical projects. There are charms, spells, enchantments, and procedures you will need to perform with your wand. Take for example in Potions. Certain potions require a brief tap on the cauldron for the potion to change or for a certain effect to happen. All students are aware of the wand that they received before coming to Hogwarts.
Dragonhide gloves: These gloves will help protect your hands from becoming harmed or injured due to the chemicals we will be coming into contact with. Certain chemicals can cause blisters, burns, and severe pains if they were to come in contact with your skin.
Dragonhide gloves are the most protective type of gloves, as dragon skin is impermeable and full of scales. The skin is so powerful that spells will barely cause an effect and sharp objects, such as swords, will only tickle the dragon at most.
Goggles: Fumes from the chemicals can severely harm your eyes. Before dealing with chemicals, the professor will make sure that each student is wearing goggles. If a chemical were to come into contact with your eyes, you might experience such things as vision loss (which can range from temporary to severe, and, in some cases, permanent) or intense burning.
All of you should have been issued a set of goggles when you enrolled in this course. These special goggles are enchanted with a particular charm that makes them impervious to mist and water. For today, I have lain out goggles for all of you that aren't charmed. Why? That's because we will be learning the Water-Repelling Charm!
Name: Water-Repelling Charm
Incantation: Impervius (im-PUR-vee-us)
Wand Movement: Envision a backwards 4 shape. Start from the left, drag the wand to the right, go up diagonally to the left, and then bring the wand straight down.
If you ever find yourself practicing alchemy unsupervised and with harsh chemicals, make sure to use this charm.
Facemask: Chemicals that are dangerous can cause severe harm when inhaled or ingested. Such side effects can include, but are not limited to:
Close-toed shoes: This is rather self-explanatory. Students who come into the classroom with anything but closed-toed shoes will be asked to change. As you are familiar with Potions class, chemicals can spill over onto the floor, thus creating a dangerous workplace for the student and anyone to come into contact with it. If a chemical were to come into contact with your skin, you may suffer from serious injuries or permanent damage.
What should you do in case of an emergency?
If you or another student come into contact with a chemical, please get as far away from the chemical as possible. Notify the professor immediately. Chemicals can range from non-toxic to extremely toxic (with side effects that can cause death if inhaled or ingested). Make sure that the chemical that you or the student comes into contact with is either written down or told to the professor. This will help the professor find the best treatment and ensure full recovery.
All of the chemicals stored in the cupboards are clearly labeled. Always read the label and follow the safety guidelines I listed earlier as well as any that may be on the label.
If you are ever to come into contact with a reactive chemical, there are a series of steps you should follow before notifying a healer.
1. Find the source of the affected area.
2. Wipe the chemical away from your skin using a cleaning charm. Tergeo should do the trick (see information below).
3a. If you happen to have Dittany, apply it to the affected area. Then wrap the wound up and go see a healer as soon as possible. Each student should be very familiar with Dittany, as it was discussed in Herbology. If you are unable to find any Dittany, your best bet is to ask the Herbology teacher where to find some, or you may ask the Potions teacher for some Essence of Dittany.
3b. There are some cases in which you may not have Dittany. Therefore, you should cover the area and find a healer as soon as possible.
Name: Chemical Cleaning Charm
Incantation: Tergeo (ter-GEE-oh)
Wand Movement: Point the tip of the wand at the affected area.
If the spell is performed correctly, a white mist will surround the wound and heal it within a few minutes.
If a student were to incorrectly produce a charm or spell, please do not touch the student or object who has been affected. Notify me immediately if this ever happens. I will determine which charm that was produced and then remedy the situation. Students should not try to correct the wrongful charm as they can risk getting injured themselves.
If students who have cases far beyond that of a mere burn or a simple transfiguration mishap, the Headmistress will be notified. Please do not worry, as the Headmistress will be able to contact the proper authorities.
Images by: Sammy Morse
Now that we have discussed Lesson Two, let's start working on our assignments! There is a short test on what we just went over as well as two extra credit assignments. Make sure to leave your test on my desk when you're through and I'll see you next week!