DIALECTICAL JOURNAL SAMPLE
DIRECTIONS: For each chapter in Part One of To Kill a Mockingbird, choose a different quote for each box and provide a reader response. Be sure to include page numbers and characters.
Calpurnia p. 153
“Don’t you fret too much over Mister Jem—“
Don’t pay Jem any mind.
(Interpreting the quote)
Scout p. 153
Scout doesn’t think that Jem deserves to have the title of Mister since he’s only four years her senior. She’s probably confused by the level of respect that Calpurnia gives to Jem who is still a boy in Scout’s eyes.
(Extending the meaning)
Scout p. 161
“How’re we gonna sing it if there ain’t any hymn-books?”
Whenever I attended church as a kid, I, too, would be lost if I couldn’t see the words to the songs since I didn’t have them memorized.
(Making a connection)
Reverend Sykes p. 162
“Alec, shut the doors. Nobody leaves here till we have ten dollars.”
Everyone in the congregation will pitch in. The reason for doing so is too important, and the reverend is being forceful. No need to upset the preacher while in the house of the Lord.
(Making a prediction)
Calpurnia p. 165
“I just have it on Christmas, it’s easier to remember that way—I don’t have a real birthday.”
What is Cal’s approximate age?
(Asking a question)
Calpurnia p. 167
“It’s not necessary to tell all you know. It’s not ladylike—in the second place, folks don’t like to have somebody around knowin’ more than they do. It aggravates ‘em. You’re not gonna change any of them by talkin’ right, they’ve got to want to learn themselves, and when they don’t want to learn there’s nothing you can do but keep your mouth shut or talk their language.”
While I agree with Cal regarding not being able to change folks, I disagree with the ladylike reference. She should not have to dumb down her intellect just to spare others’ feelings. If she can accept them as they are, then they...