To Kill a Mockingbird Essay Prompts

Instructor: Sharon Linde

Sharon has a Masters of Science in Mathematics

Ask your students to think deeply about and respond to the novel 'To Kill a Mockingbird' by using these essay questions as a guide. Questions can be used after reading the entire novel or throughout the book.

Essay Questions: Respond to Reading

Different types of questions require students to dig to varying levels of thinking. Some low-level questions focus on recalling details about surface facts, things like who, what, and when. Deeper questions, such as why or how, push students to higher level thinking; reaching for details, forming opinions, predicting, and drawing conclusions.

Both types of questions and thinking are necessary to comprehending a text, but asking your students higher level essay questions pushes them to truly respond. When students think about and answer essay prompts they use higher level thinking and are required to use the text to support ideas as part of the response.

To Kill a Mockingbird is a book rich with meaning, symbols, and theme. Use these essay prompts with your students, either as you read or after the novel is finished.


  • Atticus plays an important role as a father figure not only to Jem and Scout. Choose two characters from the novel that were impacted by Atticus and describe their interactions and the result. Use text evidence to support your answer.
  • How does the children's view of their father change throughout the course of the novel?
  • Boo Radley left gifts for Scout and Jem, but Scout said she felt bad about not returning any gifts to Boo. Do you agree with her? What was Boo's motivation in leaving gifts? What gifts did Scout give to Boo?
  • Discuss how the children in the novel, Jem, Scout and Dill, change throughout the novel. Why do they change? What brings this change about?

To unlock this lesson you must be a Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use

Become a member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account