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Books to Teach Kids About Cause and Effect

by Melissa Taylor

Teaching kids cause and effect develops critical thinking skills important for all ages of children — from the 2-year-old deciding not to run across the street to the 12-year-old deciding how to handle peer pressure. We hope these books guide kids into many thoughtful conversations that spill over into their daily lives.

Before you read, remind kids what cause and effect mean. Cause refers to what caused something to happen; effect is what happened as a result of the cause. You may need to provide examples to make this clear before you read.

In the books below, you’ll find that some books show the effect and readers need to figure out the cause. In other cases, one cause sets off a chain reaction which can lead to multiple effects or multiple cause and effect scenarios. No matter what how the text is set up, all of these picture books provide rich opportunities for kids to think deeply about cause and effect.

What are your favorite stories for teaching little kids cause and effect? Let us know in the comments below!

For more lesson plans, book recommendations, and reading tips for your classroom or library, check out our Teach Brightly page!

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