How do the reactions of Jem and Scout differ from Atticus' reaction after he shoots the dog?

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gmuss25 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Chapter 10 begins with the children complaining about how Atticus is an uninteresting parent with no admirable attributes. That is until the day a rabid dog named Tim Johnson walked down the middle of the road in Maycomb, forcing the community members to retreat inside their houses. When Sherriff Tate arrived, he handed his gun to Atticus and told him to shoot the dog. Atticus killed Tim Johnson with one shot.

Scout and Jem are in awe of their father's ability. Atticus acts like his shot was "not a big deal," while his children are amazed. Miss Maudie tells the children that their father's nickname growing up was Ol' One-Shot because of his deadly accuracy. Jem is surprised that his father never bragged about his amazing marksmanship. Atticus feels like he was blessed with a God-given talent and chooses not to brag about his ability. Scout wants to brag to her friends at school about her father's marksmanship, but Jem, always wanting to be like Atticus, tells her not to say a word.

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To Kill a Mockingbird

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