Mockingbird Premier Extravaganza
BY SOPHIE LEWIS ON MARCH 21, 2014
The freshmen in Sarah Brafford’s English I class get the opportunity to participate in a “culminating,” event every semester. After the class reads the award-winning book, “To Kill a Mockingbird,” each student participates in a Premier Extravaganza. This event requires the students to portray a character from the book.
“[The students] also do some projects that are related to the novel,” Brafford said. “They can do a story map for the character or anything involving the plot or the symbolism.”
Brafford believes that this experience can help the students appreciate the book. She hopes that a fun extravaganza and movie can get the kids excited about the book and help them want to read more.
“[The students] really have to know the novel,” Brafford said. “I think it gives them a chance to use their imagination as well as knowledge to come up with a new product.”
Doing this project means more work for the students, but it is also a learning experience.
“It’s about really getting to know the characters outside of the book,” freshman Lyndsay Drouin said.
The premier extravaganza includes watching the movie, “To Kill a Mockingbird.” The movie stars Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch along with Mary Badham as Jean Louise “Scout” Finch.
“The best part is watching the movie at the end,” freshman Anna Jordan said.
The novel centers around Atticus Finch, a lawyer in Maycomb County, Alabama. The narrator, Scout, is Atticus’ daughter. The main plotline of the story begins when Atticus Finch takes on a new case. Tom Robinson, a black man, has been falsely accused of a terrible crime. Even though the court is already decided against him, Atticus takes the case.
“My favorite part of the novel is Atticus Finch’s closing statement to the jury, when he is leaving the courtroom all of the African Americans in the balcony stand up out of respect for him,” Bradford said. “Reverend Sykes says to Scout who is still just a little bit asleep, ‘Miss Jean Louise, Miss Jean Louise, stand up, Your father’s passing.’”
Scout, along with her brother Jem and their friend Dill, does a lot of crazy things for fun. Sometimes it is not so fun for them afterward.
“I like how much trouble they get into,” Drouin said. “Its really fun to see what they get in trouble for.”
Brafford and her students participate in the Premier Extravaganza every semester..
“I think [the extravaganza] makes everyone look forward to reading the book,” Spratt said.
Spratt and Brafford both think that the extravaganza is very beneficial to students.
“[The best part of the whole extravaganza is] just being together as a group of students who have enjoyed a novel and learned something from it,” Brafford said.