July 16

To Kill a Mockingbird

“…they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us.

That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.” To Kill a Mockingbird

167323975_231f9542a6_zThere’s a timeless appeal to the novel ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ by Harper Lee, written in 1960. Winner of the 1961 Pulitzer Prize, it has been recognised as a classic since it was published. Over 30 million copies of the novel have been printed, and it has been translated into over 40 different languages.

The Novel:

You will find a free copy of the full text here.

There is a talking book of the complete novel on YouTube in 11 parts. You may like to listen to the book as you are reading it:

Part 1    Part 2   Part 3   Part 4    Part 5   Part 6    Part 7    Part 8   Part 9   Part 10    Part 11 (last part).

The Movie:

Trailer from the movie, starring Gregory Peck (1962)

Atticus’ speech: All Men are Created Equal (from movie To Kill a Mockingbird, 1962)

Trial scene – To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)

The following resources can be a starting point for your research:

Library Resources:

F LEE To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (the novel itself).

DVD0291 To Kill a Mockingbird – movie starring Gregory Peck, 1962.

813.09 LEE Various critical resources about the novel. My favourite is:

813.09 LEE Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird (The story behind) by B. Giddens-White

791.43 LEE Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird: The relationship between film and text

Background to the Novel:

This clip looks at the historical context of Harper Lee’s novel:

You may also like to read the verse novel ‘Out of the dust’ by Karen Hesse 811 HES to give you an idea of the setting of the novel.

Novel Study Resources online:

You’ll find a video summary of the novel here.

Crash course in the novel, by ‘The Fault in our Stars’ author John Green

Race, class and gender in To Kill a Mockingbird, by John Green

To Kill a Mockingbird: A Five Minute Guide

Themes and motifs in To Kill a Mockingbird


eNotes on the novel are divided into several parts:

Introduction ,    Themes,    Characters,    Summary,    Top 10 questions

New York Times: 50 Years of To Kill a Mockingbird (includes lots of valuable links to other websites)

Shmoop site (lots of comprehensive resources on the novel – follow the tabs on the lefthand side)

The big read: To Kill a Mockingbird – this site has lots of tabs to work through. Explore the site thoroughly.

About the author:

Harper Lee’s only recorded interview about To Kill a Mockingbird:


Two ways of looking at To Kill a Mockingbird

Quotes from the novel.

Nelle Harper Lee, the author of To Kill a Mockingbird, was born on April 28, 1926. She died on February 19, 2016. This article, published the day Harper Lee passed away, sums up her life and her contribution to literature

For Teachers:

New York Times: 50 Years of To Kill a Mockingbird (includes lots of valuable links to other websites)

To Kill a Mockingbird (Pearson)

To Kill a Mockingbird (National Endowment for the Arts) – make sure you look at Reader Resources PDF and tabs on the page.

To Kill a Mockingbird (Shmoop)

To Kill a Mockingbird (Cliffs Notes)

MHS Guide to the novel – comprehensive gateway to activities on the novel

Teaching resources including chapter questions

Teaching resources

UBC – To Kill a Mockingbird Unit Plan (49 page PDF)

50th anniversary site – gateway to resources

Teaching To Kill a Mockingbird

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