my daughters essay

can anyone grade/proof my daughters paper? Trying to get an 11th grade level on this.

I Think I’m Beginning to Understand Why……………

To Kill a Mockingbird authored by Harper Lee is a story about Scout Finch and her brother, Jem, living in the 1930’s in Alabama. Scout and Jem grow to understand that the world isn’t always fair and that people in their own neighborhood weren’t exactly what they appeared to be. Boo (Arthur) Radley was a neighbor to the Finch Family. Boo was judged by the town as being reclusive, mysterious, scary looking and had done bad things. Boo Radley was ridiculed and judged in Maycomb, yet nobody in Maycomb really knew him.
Jem stated “Well, judgin’ from his tracks, he’s about six and a half feet tall. He eats raw squirrels and all the cats he can catch. There’s a long, jagged scar that runs all the way across his face. His teeth are yella and rotten. His eyes are popped. And he drools most of the time.” (Lee 17) Boo Radley was a kind man, nothing like the description or ideas Jem and the town’s people Scout had heard. Beginning on page 72 through page 80, Boo Radley had shown Scout and Jem kindness three times. Boo had covered Scout in a blanket the night Miss Maudie’s house caught fire, then the story makes you think that Boo had mended Jem’s pants and next Boo had left all the gifts in the tree for Scout and Jem. In Scout’s narration “Boo was our neighbor. He gave us two soap dolls, a broken watch and chain, a pair of good-luck pennies, and our lives.” (Lee 307) Boo Radley’s actions in the story show that he was reaching out to Scout and Jem and showed kindness. Boo Radley’s kind ways made Scout realize that he was just a normal person and not the horrible person she had heard about.
Boo Radley was a brave man. He showed bravery when he heard cried from the children and ran out of his house to protect them. Sheriff Heck Tate said "I never heard tell that it’s against the law for a citizen to do his utmost to prevent a crime from being committed, which is exactly what he did.” (Lee 276) This quote from the story makes the reader think that Boo Radley was physically brave and did protect the children. Boo Radley also showed emotional bravery in this same chapter. Boo Radley was brave enough to come out of his house where he was comfortable. He knew he would be seen, he knew what stories Maycomb had made up about him in the past and this might just make the stories about him go on for twenty more years. Boo showed emotional bravery in leaving his home.
Yes, Boo Radley was reclusive. His dad thought he was doing the family good when he kept Boo in the house as a young boy and out of the public eye. After years of being in the house it was a safe place for Boo to observe and not have to participate in everyday life. Maycomb’s people made up stories, they gossiped, said mean and hateful things yet none really knew the truth. Jem said “Scout, I think I’m beginning to understand why Boo Radley stayed shut up in the house all the time it’s because he wants to stay inside.” (Lee 227) Jem had matured enough to realize that the town of Maycomb is full of narrow minded and prejudice people. Outside of his home Jem knew Boo would continue to be judged unfairly and unjustly. Boo wants to stay in his house because he doesn’t want to be a part of all the cruelty.
Maycomb didn’t tolerate people who were different from them. In Maycomb you acted in a way that was expected of you based on what society or the community thought you should be. Anybody in Maycomb who was odd, unusual, poor, red, black or white were judged by the community by people who were ignorant or maybe just afraid. Arthur Radley is a man who is kind, he is brave and despite being a recluse he proved to the children he was not the monster that Maycomb said he was.

Reported. We don’t usually do other people’s homework for them.

just asking for an “opinion.”

Stop doing your kid’s homework for them.


I wouldn’t have a problem reading through this paper and giving my opinion. It’s pretty short, after all, and probably wouldn’t take much time to offer constructive criticism to your daughter.

But my criticism isn’t going to your daughter is it? It’s going to you. Why else would you need to be “Trying to get an 11th grade level on this”?

If your daughter wrote it and your daughter’s in 11th grade, it’ll sound like an 11th grader, right? Or better if she’s a good writer (in which case, I still don’t see the problem)?

You wrote this and you’re trying to make it sound to your daughter’s teachers that she wrote it instead. That’s really crappy. Have her read her own damn book and have her write her own damn paper. Seriously, it’s To Kill a Mockingbird. It’s actually quite good.

Shouldn’t there be a “SPOILER ALERT” somewhere in there?

Considering that there is apparently no rape, racism, or trial in the OP’s version of To Kill A Mockingbird, he hasn’t really spoiled much.

Other than “easy to read,” where we can assume selecting that is a “yes” vote, the poll strikes me as unanswerable. What does it mean if I select “grade?”

I don’t see this as the case here. She’s already written the paper; we’re just being ask to review it.

The only issue I would have with the paper is that it could use more focus. I believe her overall point is “Scout and Jem grow to understand that the world isn’t always fair and that people in their own neighborhood weren’t exactly what they appeared to be.” But she doesn’t make that clear enough in the rest of the paper.

She should follow the outline: here’s what appeared to be happening - here’s what people assumed was happening - here’s what actually happened - here’s the difference between the appearance and reality.

Needs glitter.

I like the grade option. It’s short and to the point.

My daughter has Aspergers and the hardest thing I do as her parent is to step aside and allow her to emerge and develop as best she can. As well as her parent sometimes what I THINK is great is not great at all. I am her Dad and it is hard to be objective. I think that generally speaking some of what you say above may in fact apply to many parents, however in this case you are correct in your assumption. I am just a Dad whose daughter asked if I could read this to see what I thought. I thought it was pretty good, I’m not a teacher, just a Dad who happens to be biased. Thank you very much for the post.

What do any of the choices mean?

If you want brutal honesty, it does not sound like an 11th grade paper to me. (I work in education assessment, so I’ve read several thousand essays from kids 6-18 over the past ten years.) Had you not said how old your daughter was, I would have assumed that this was an older middle schooler’s essay.

The biggest problem, which is the one that made me think middle schooler, is that there isn’t enough connection between the quotes and the points that she’s trying to make. Quotes are supposed to support what you want to say yourself, not try to do your talking for you. Learning how to integrate quotes is a common problem for kids that age. She does make some good points about how Boo is seen differently by Jem over time, especially in the second to last paragraph, but the weak quote integration detracts from that. Luckly, there are a lot of websites that give advice on improving the use of quotes.

Also, most of her word choices are sophisticated enough to sound like an 11th grader, but there are some weak ones like “scary looking” and “had done bad things.” Ask her if she can think of stronger words, like perhaps “hideous” and “was a suspected criminal,” that express similar ideas.

As I am literally half a lifetime away from 11th grade (man…that’s depressing…), it’s really very difficult for me to determine if this is good or appropriate writing for an 11th grader.

If your daughter truly wrote this paper herself after reading the book herself, then my only response is for you to step back and let her turn it in. When she gets a grade, I think it’s fair to go through it with her then. See where there’s room for improvement and work on that for next time.

If that essay was written by an 11th grade student who is supposed to be an average student then “she” has a long way to go. I would rate that at about 7th grade writing. The grade I would give would be a big fat F.

From the look of it, I seriously doubt that it’s the OP’s work, unless perhaps he’s still learning English as a foreign language.

To the OP: Welcome to the boards. Since the homework is pretty much done, I’m going to regard this as a borderline case and allow it to stand for the time being. Usually though it’s best to avoid posting homework-related threads of this type.

Moderator hat off…
In the meantime, I wouldn’t be surprised if your daughter enjoyed the book and understood it perfectly well, but has difficulty in forming an opinion about what Harper Lee is trying to tell us, or communicating her thoughts on this. You might try reading the book yourself, if you haven’t already, and discussing it with her.

I am impressed by what you say. The assesment you make hits the nail on the head from my view point. The vocabulary is pretty good but is not consistent which is typical of her entire personality. Seems odd to say but she is in an honors 10th grade class and she has enjoyed this book as well did an OCD report on the differences of the book and movie. This is a short assignment however heavy on points for grading, you have inspired me to think of the word balance and you are correct. As I said, sometimes Dad just needs a bit of help.

What type of scale do you want us to use to evaluate the essay?

I score standardized test essays as a part time job. If you want me to use the standard 1-6 score system, I’d give it a 4 on a 1-6 scale. Lots of details, but doesn’t have the organization, word choice, or development I’d expect in a higher scoring paper.

I’d suggest scaling back on the number of specific facts about the book and add some more development about the ideas that she pulls out of the book.

I’m a 7th grade teacher currently, but have taught older grades(up to 12).

It reads like a passing, but perhaps C+ or B- 7th Grade paper.

If she has a disability that affects her writing, it might be a “B”. But that is for 7th grade.

For 11th grade? C- tops(D if you live where they still have D’s). We dropped D’s awhile ago.

It means you correctly followed the instructions, which said “grade this paper”. :slight_smile: