How did Matt’s ability to survive change in The Sign of the Beaver?

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In Elizabeth George Speare's novel The Sign of the Beaver , the main character, Matt Hallowell, is left to live on his own in the wilderness for several weeks. Set in the rural woods of Maine in the 1760s, twelve-year-old Matt must rely on his survival skills in order...

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In Elizabeth George Speare's novel The Sign of the Beaver, the main character, Matt Hallowell, is left to live on his own in the wilderness for several weeks. Set in the rural woods of Maine in the 1760s, twelve-year-old Matt must rely on his survival skills in order to protect the newly-built family home while his dad travels to get their family from another town.

Matt's ability to survive changes as the story unfolds. Early on, Matt makes mistakes which leave him with limited supplies, and his attempts to fend for himself fail. Matt's age plays a role in his struggles. He is young and inexperienced. As the novel continues and Matt is befriended by Attean, his knowledge on survival skills grows.

It is the maturation of Matt that changes his ability to survive. Throughout the novel, he grows in his knowledge as a friend, student, teacher, and son. All of his experiences play a role in the changing of his ability to survive.

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