Calpurnia had been a part of the children's lives since they were born, and over the years she had become a part of the family. In addition to cooking for them, keeping house, and sending them out of the house in clean clothes, Calpurnia often acts as a moral guide, protector, referee, and disciplinarian. Scout, being younger and more irrepressible, earns the greater amount of Cal's attention. It was Cal who taught Scout to write by having her copy chapters from the Bible and rewarding her if Cal judged Scout's penmanship to be satisfactory. According to Scout, the rewards were few and far between. Cal set high standards. When Scout humiliated young Walter Cunningham at lunch one day, it was Cal who sent her into the kitchen and made her understand in no uncertain terms how guests were to be treated in their home.
Besides disciplining Scout when necessary, Cal treated her with tenderness when Scout needed tenderness. After Scout's very rough first day of school, Cal told her that she had been lonely without her and made a special treat for her (cracklin' bread). To Scout's great surprise, Calpurnia then kissed her.
Cal understood the changes in Jem as he was growing up, and comforted Scout when she felt isolated from her brother. She watched them both, kept track of them, and made them lemonade each summer day.