Towards the beginning of the story, Scout subscribes to the unflattering rumors and legends regarding their reclusive neighbor, Arthur "Boo" Radley. Scout believes Jem's terrifying description of Boo and views him as a malevolent phantom. In addition to fearing Boo, Scout also invades his privacy by raiding the Radley yard, acting as a lookout when Jem tries to leave a note in his windowsill, and even reenacting his life story in a game they title "One Man's Family."
As the story progresses, Scout matures and demonstrates her growth by no longer fearing Boo and by respecting his privacy. In chapter 15, Scout displays her maturation by saying,
Dill asked if I’d like to have a poke at Boo Radley. I said I didn’t think it’d be nice to bother him, and spent the rest of the afternoon filling Dill in on last winter’s events (150).
By telling Dill that it wouldn't be nice to bother Boo, Scout acts maturely and sympathizes with her reclusive neighbor. At this point in the story, Scout no longer views Boo as a terrifying monster and demonstrates self-control by obeying her father's instructions. Scout once again demonstrates her maturation and growth in chapter 28 when she and Jem walk past the Radley residence at night. Scout tells Jem,
It is a scary place though, ain’t it?...Boo doesn’t mean anybody any harm, but I’m right glad you’re along (258).
Scout's perception of Boo reflects her maturity, and she views him as a shy, compassionate neighbor. She is also mature enough to find humor in her past behavior and recognize her childish fears.
Scout's maturity is also on display through her ability to recognize the blatant hypocrisy in her community. During a current events activity in class, Scout listens as her teacher, Ms. Gates, comments that there is no such thing as prejudice in the United States. Scout recognizes Ms. Gates's hypocrisy and tells Jem later that night,
Well, coming out of the courthouse that night Miss Gates was—she was goin‘ down the steps in front of us, you musta not seen her—she was talking with Miss Stephanie Crawford. I heard her say it’s time somebody taught ’em a lesson, they were gettin‘ way above themselves, an’ the next thing they think they can do is marry us. Jem, how can you hate Hitler so bad an‘ then turn around and be ugly about folks right at home (251).