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LESSONS LEARNED BY JEM AND SCOUT
Atticus. Both of the children learn that "it's a sin to kill a mockingbird"--be it the songbird or innocent human beings. Scout also learns about tolerance and how
"You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view--until you climb into his skin and walk around in it."
Aunt Alexandra. Jem and Scout come to understand that their aunt's obsession with heredity, "gentle breeding," and "Fine Folks" does not agree with their own way of judging people.
Miss Maudie. Maudie teaches Jem and Scout that their father is a special man to whom the people of Maycomb turn when they have a tough job to be done.
Dill. From Dill's parents' actions, the children see that gifts and money do not buy a child's happiness. Scout learns about love from her secret kisses she shares with Dill.
Dolphus Raymond. From Dolphus, Scout learns that things are not always what they seem, and that supposedly "evil" men actually have good intentions.
Boo Radley. Boo is another example of appearances (or the lack of an appearance) being deceiving, and how rumors often portray people in an untrue--and in Boo's case, an opposite--manner.
Miss Stephanie. The children learn that most of Miss Stephanie's gossip is unfounded.
Miss Caroline. Scout learns from her first grade teacher that a modern education does not always make a good teacher.
Miss Gates. Scout learns about hypocrisy from her third grade teacher's comments about Hitler, the Jews, and Maycomb's black citizens.
Calpurnia. Scout learns to write cursive from Cal, but she also learns about mannerly behavior during her visit to Cal's church and from Walter Cunningham's visit to the Finch house.
Bob Ewell. By the actions of the Ewell family, Jem and Scout recognize the differences between true "trash" and country folks like the Cunninghams.
Mrs. Dubose. Jem discovers from their cranky old neighbor that bravery comes in many shapes and sizes.
Sheriff Heck Tate. From Tate's decision to call Bob Ewell's death self-inflicted, Scout sees that the law is not always enforced honestly, but that sometimes it is necessary for justice to be served.
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