What are the predictions and the explanations of To Kill a Mockingbird?

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Susan Hurn eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Here are some predictions and their outcomes that can be found within the novel.

1. Even as he takes the case, Atticus predicts that Tom will be convicted. He was right. Despite one Cunningham arguing in favor of Tom's innocence, the jury does ignore the evidence and convict.

2. There are many horrible predictions as to what Boo Radley will do if he catches the children. They were wrong. Each time Boo does come out of his house, it is to do something kind for the children: leave gifts for them, sew up Jem's pants, and place a blanket around Scout the cold night of the fire. Finally, Boo comes out to save their lives when Bob Ewell attacks them.

3. Aunt Alexandra predicts that Calpurnia will ruin the children if she is not sent away. She was wrong. Atticus refuses to even discuss sending Cal away. She continues to play a very positive role in the children's lives as they move through the tragedy of Tom Robinson.

4. Miss Caroline, Scout's teacher, predicts that Scout's reading with Atticus will harm her reading progress. She was wrong. Scout and Atticus continued reading together which only served to deepen their bond and help Scout in many ways in addition to her reading skills.

5. Finally, Heck Tate predicts that Atticus can kill Tim Johnson, the rabid dog, with one shot as must be done. Heck was right. Atticus puts the dog down with one shot, preventing what could have been a disaster.

lwjohnston eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This is a very broad question, but let me see if I can help you.  Anytime you start a new book, it's great to make predictions.  You can base these on many things including cover art, info on the back of the book, prior knowledge of the author, information you've received from your teacher.  Start by doing the following:

1. What does the picture on the front cover say to you?  Does it give any possible hints to the setting or time period?  Any clue on the types of characters you'll encounter within the book?

2. Read the synopsis on the back of the book or inside the book jacket.  What type of journey do these characters go on?  Who are the main characters?

3. Do some research on your author.  When were they born?  Where did they grow up?

4. At what point within your class are you studying the piece of literature?

5. Is there a movie based on your book?  Research it!

Once you've made your predictions, start your journey into the book.  Make notes of when you were right and when your predictions turned out to be different than the book. Make notes as you read of the major characters and events.  Then, you should be well on your way to having the tools you need to explain the story.

Good luck!

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To Kill a Mockingbird

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