The Best Cause and Effect Books and Resources
Using cause and effect books with great illustrations in your classroom or school library helps students develop a deeper understanding of how one action affects the next.
Cause and Effect Books and Resources
Let’s start with a definition of cause and effect.
The cause is WHY something happens and an effect is WHAT happened next.
We use these concepts every time we show the relationship between events. For example, telling children if they do ‘this’ then they can do ‘that’.
Children pick up the concept of cause and effect at an early age. This could involve dropping a toy over and over until an adult stops returning it. Or reacting to loud sounds and pushing toys to make them move.
Though, they may understand the concept on some level most children won’t be able to verbalise their understanding. This is why we need to teach cause and effect to our students.
Picture books illustrating cause and effect gives students a visual representation of the connection between events and interpret what they are reading. It is cause and effect that makes literature entertaining. The cause makes events happen, followed by the effects of those actions.
Using picture books to teach cause and effect is fun and meaningful. Your students won’t even realise it is a lesson! Exposure to cause and effect books will greatly benefit their reading skills, including:
- Comprehending what they had read
- Picking out the author’s meaning
- Following different threads within a story
- Ability to make inferences and predictions based on previous events
- Understanding chronological events and story sequences
- Recognising relationships between events
- Drawing accurate conclusions
- Organising information
Visit Using Picture Books to Teach Cause and Effect for information on using the recommended books with your students.
Books to Teach Cause and Effect
These picture books are perfect for teaching cause and effect with students of any age. Click on each book to explore related resources, lesson plans and activities. Towards the end of this post, there are also links to external information and resources.
If you want this cause and effect book list as a pdf scroll to the end of the books for a link.
Cause and Effect Resources Online
Here you will find some websites that explain the importance of children’s understanding of cause and effect. They are written for parents but give some useful background information.
The other resources are educational websites describing how to teach cause and effect, and not just with a book!
Please check they are appropriate for your specific needs before using them with children. If you have any suggestions please get in touch!
- 1 to 1 Therapy: The Importance of Teaching Your Child Cause and Effect
- Learning and the Brain: “Explain Yourself”: A Powerful Strategy for Teaching Children Cause and Effect
- Literacy Ideas: Cause and effect in reading and writing
- Reading Rockets: Cause and Effect – activities and books
- Scholastic: Understanding Cause and Effect Lesson Plan
- We Are Teachers: 12 Cause-and-Effect Lesson Plans You’ll Love
Cause and Effect Videos
These short videos can be used as discussion starters about cause and effect. Watch the video before playing them to your students. Some of them are simple while others are more complex or abstract.
Teaching cause and effect has it challenges but by using excellent visual literature your students will come to recognise events and subsequent action in their real life.
What are your favourite picture books for teaching cause and effect? I will include them in this list so let me know if you have any great suggestions.
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