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      I hope you had a good time at the Walkathon.  It was great to see so many students together in school having a good time.  I am hopeful that Friday was the beginning of our return to normal.  Please continue to follow all health guidelines.  Every day seems to be better and closer to normal: YAY!  I know this has been a tough stretch.  You should feel good about having endured all the adversity.  Hang in there a little more.

      It was a short but good week.  People are saying good things about To Kill a Mockingbird.  Keep it up.  I hope you are enjoying the reading.  As we get into Part Two, I think you will enjoy the book even more.  We will soon be at the trial of Tom Robinson.  Even though the trial takes only a few chapters, it dominates the rest of the novel.  As always, read thoughtfully and carefully; write in your journal.  Ask me questions when you are confused.  I will not give anything away, but I can say the rest of the book is great and has a wonderful ending.  Your dedication and good work will be rewarded.

      As you read through Part Two, remember the things we said about Part One.  They are important.  Keep in mind all the things we have said about Scout as a naive and innocent narrator.  Remember, too, those things we said about what innocence is.  Scout will report many things to us that she does not fully understand.  You may not get all of them at first either: that is all right.  Just keep reading thoughtfully.  The trial is interesting and can be challenging.  We will talk in class about how trials in the U.S. work.  Keep at it.  Enjoy it.

      I know I am behind on grading.  I will keep working on that, especially the Thought Responses.  You submitted your Song Analysis essay.  I hope you had fun with that.  Those will take me a little longer to get to.  I look forward to reading those.

      We have less than a month left of school days.  I know you feel the end is in sight.  As I have said many times, this year has challenged us all.  Keep doing good work.  End the year well.  Please make sure you are doing the reading carefully.  You will really enjoy the novel if you give it a chance.  Hang in there.

      I hope all your classes are going well.  Keep working hard.  Ask questions.  Be patient with yourself and everyone. Your folks are giving you a great opportunity to get an education.  This is your education: please take control of and make the most of it.   Keep following all the health directives in school and at home.  Stay well. However long this pandemic lasts, I promise we will make the most of the time.  Be present to this moment.  Have a good vacation and great week ahead.  Take care.  God bless us all.


MONDAY, 17 MAY: Read Chapters 12-16 for today. This is Part Two and the lead-up to the trial that is the center of the novel.  The innocence of Part One seems gone.  I posted another reading guide for Part Two.  Journal: Write about what Scout starts to notice about her town and her world, especially things regarding relations between whites and Blacks.  I will assign a Thought Response at the end of the day to be submitted by 10:00 p.m.

TUESDAY, 18 MAY: Bring the novel.  We will continue our discussions.

WEDNESDAY, 20 MAY: Read Chapters 17-18.  This is the beginning of the testimony in the trial.  Journal: Write about what you notice about the testimony of Mayella and Bob Ewell.  What are you thinking?  Bring the novel.

THURSDAY, 20 MAY: Bring the novel.  We will continue our discussions.

FRIDAY, 21 MAY: Today is Junior Day.  They have a Mass and get rings and senior pins.  In two years, this will be you!  You have the day off.  Enjoy your 3-day weekend.  Use it to catch up on work.

MONDAY, 24 MAY: Read Chapters 19-27.  These chapters are the end of the trial, the verdict, and some of the aftermath.  Read carefully; some Chapters can be challenging.  Journal: Write about your thoughts about the verdict.  What are you feeling?  What are Scout and Jem feeling?


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