Grade: Middle
Subject: Literature

#2127. To Kill A Mockingbird: Pre-Reading

Literature, level: Middle
Posted Mon Feb 12 08:35:01 PST 2001 by Kerry LeBlanc (
Argyll Home Education Services Centre, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Materials Required: internet, encyclopedia, resource texts, art supplies if desired
Concepts Taught: research, pre-reading strategies, timeline, sif=gnificance of title

This assignment comes from my online teaching unit. All directions are given directly to the kids. You will likely want to modify a little to accommodate kids in the classroom.
In this assignment you will be asked to do 2 things:

1) Create a timeline that highlights some of the major events leading to equal treatment of all people under the law.

EVALUATION: Marked holistically /10
Make sure each item on your timeline is:

-all required events correctly labelled
-each event correctly and briefly summarized
-readable (complete sentences NOT necessary)

2) Research what exactly a mockingbird is, and then make some predictions about what the significance of the title might be.

EVLAUATION: Marked holistically /10
Use formal language to clearly answer the questions (200 words) in paragraph form.
Clearly explain your prediction(s) and support/exemplify what you have said with specific examples about the mockingbird.
Edit carefully for logic, spelling, grammar, punctuation and sentence/paragraph format.

TOTAL: 2 answers x 10 marks each = /20


Did you know that until the 1950's in the United States, segregation of people based on their race was permitted by law?

Create a timeline that highlights some of the major events leading to equal treatment of all people under the law. Include:
-the American Civil War
-the Reconstruction Period
-the Bus Boycott
-the Brown vs. the Topeka board of Education decision
-the march on Washington
-when the novel was set
-when the novel was written
-any other dates you feel are significant


Authors choose the names of their books very carefully. Often the title contains information that can help us to understand the novel in a broader sense.

Prepare a brief (200 words) paragraph which answers the questions asked below:
Research to find out:
What is a mockingbird?
Predict based on your research how the Mockingbird may be significant in the title of the novel.