This package is a close reading task for an excerpt out of chapter 24 of To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. This package includes a 78-line passage, 28 guided questions and fill-in-the blanks, an answer key, a culminating writing assignment, and an initial activity to give purpose to reading the chapter in its entirety.
The close read focuses on a line Miss Maudie delivers in chapter 24: “His food doesn’t stick going down, does it?” The events leading up to her words, and what happens immediately after, often leave students dizzy and unable to follow. This close reading task clears up confusion, and strengthens both their understanding of Miss Maudie and the town of Maycomb.
Below is the context and directions given to students during the guided close read:
In chapter 24, through Scout’s narration, readers attend a missionary circle meeting for the women of the church. Some of the neighbors are invited for refreshments. Aunt Alexandra is hosting the all-female affair in her brother’s home, and has invited Scout to attend. It’s an effort to introduce her to the world of women. In the passage provided, the social-hour conversation has just turned from the African tribe Mrs. Grace Merriweather appears to care so much about to more local topics, including Maycomb’s African American community and the recently completed trial of Tom Robinson. Much of the passage details the conversation between Mrs. Grace Merriweather and Mrs. Gertrude Farrow, who, according to Scout, are the first and second most devout (religious) ladies in all of Maycomb, respectively. Our narrator, however, loses the thread of conversation when she starts daydreaming. It’s your job to closely read between the lines to figure out what happens in this awkward social situation.
Closely read the passage provided and reference the specific details in it as you answer the questions below on a separate sheet of paper: