In chapter 2 of The Sign of the Beaver, what is the main problem, and why do you think the author chose to include this event in the story?

The main problem in chapter 2 of The Sign of the Beaver is that Matt has an uneasy feeling that he is being watched. The author chose to include this because it adds a sense of reality to the story of a boy who has been left alone in the woods and because it foreshadows his future friendships with members of the local Native American community.

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I would argue that Matt's main problem in chapter 2 is that although he is relishing being alone, he has a constant feeling that he is being watched, and this naturally leads to some feelings of uneasiness. It is always at the back of his mind that there may be...

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I would argue that Matt's main problem in chapter 2 is that although he is relishing being alone, he has a constant feeling that he is being watched, and this naturally leads to some feelings of uneasiness. It is always at the back of his mind that there may be an attack by the Native Americans. While his father had reassured him, prior to his departure, that there had been no attacks in Maine since the signing of the last treaty, Matt has heard some horror stories, which add to the tingle of fear he feels when he feels that he is being watched. Of course, as chapter 3 will reveal, it is not the Native Americans that Matt needed to fear, but rather one particular unpleasant white man.

I imagine that Elizabeth George Speare chose to include the story of Matt's impression that he is being watched for two reasons. First, it would only be natural for a child to feel some nervousness when left alone in an environment like this, so it helps the story to seem realistic. Secondly, it provides a form of foreshadowing of the relationships that Matt later forms with various members of the local Native American community, such as Saknis, who nurses him to health after a bee attack, and Attean, who, despite some initial animosity, becomes Matt's firm friend.

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