To Kill a Mockingbird Culminating Essay & Presentation

To Kill a Mockingbird culminating

This is the culminating task for students who have completed reading To Kill a Mockingbird, a cornerstone of American literature that explores themes of racial injustice, moral growth, and compassion. The culminating activity will consist of two parts: an MLA formatted essay and a presentation. This activity aims to deepen students’ understanding of the novel’s themes, characters, and historical context, while also honing their writing and public speaking skills.

Learning Goals

  • I will be able to analyze and articulate my understanding of To Kill a Mockingbird through an MLA-formatted essay.
  • I will be able to explore a specific theme, character development, or symbol within the novel, using textual evidence to support my analysis.
  • I will be able to develop a well-organized presentation that communicates the key points of my essay effectively to my audience.


To Kill a Mockingbird Culminating Activity

The culminating activity for this novel contains two parts:

  1. An MLA Essay
  2. A Presentation

After reading To Kill a Mockingbird, complete each part. Below are the criteria for each part.

An MLA Essay

Need an MLA Essay Unit? Click here!

Your written piece will be marked out of 40. You will be marked by:

  • Use of format    /10
  • Mechanics     /10
  • Logical Development    /10
  • Content    /10

Write about one of the topics below:

  1. How does Scout’s perspective and understanding of the world change throughout the novel? Provide specific examples to support your answer.
  2. To Kill a Mockingbird deals heavily with the theme of prejudice. In what ways are various forms of prejudice depicted in the novel, and what lessons can we learn from these portrayals?
  3. Discuss the symbolism of the mockingbird in the novel. Which characters can be seen as “mockingbirds” and why?
  4. Atticus Finch is often seen as a moral hero. What moral lessons does he teach his children, and how do these lessons affect their actions and understanding of the world?
  5. How does the historical setting of the novel (the Great Depression in the American South) influence the events and attitudes of the characters?
  6. Analyze the different perspectives on justice as shown in the novel. How do characters like Atticus, Bob Ewell, and Tom Robinson view justice, and what does this say about their characters?
  7. Should we still study To Kill a Mockingbird in high school? Why or why not? Be sure to draw examples from the book.
  8. To Kill a Mockingbird is often considered a coming-of-age story. What does this novel say about the process of growing up in a deeply flawed society?
  9. Examine the role of women in the novel. How are female characters like Scout, Calpurnia, and Miss Maudie portrayed, and what do these portrayals say about the society they live in?

Your work should be 5 paragraphs long. It should be approximately 500 words.


Your presentation will be marked out of 40. You will be marked by:

  • Content   /20
  • Slideshow   /10
  • Speaking   /10

Your presentation must be between 5 and 7 minutes. You will be timed, so it is important to fall within that range. 

Your presentation must be the content of your essay on To Kill a Mockingbird. You can focus on whichever aspects you like, but it should be representative of your essay. Some things you can discuss are:

  • Why you chose this topic 
  • Your thesis
  • Your main points
  • Quotes from the story, and why you chose those quotes
  • What you learned from the book
  • Other points of interest
  • Works Cited

Be sure to include a title slide with your name on it.

As you prepare your presentation, remember the following: 

  • Keep your slides clean and high-contrast.
  • Don’t put too much information on a slide.
  • Don’t read off of the slides
  • Speak clearly
  • Address the audience

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