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Cause and Effect Examples

“If you drink water, you will be hydrated.”

“If you clean your room, you can go play outside. “

You probably have spoken about cause and effect to your children even before they officially learned about it.

You expect children to understand cause and effect when you are trying to prove a relationship between two things or when you are demonstrating that one event is the direct result of another.

Cause and Effect Definition

Cause and effect is the relationship between events and things, where one occurs because of the other. The result is a combination of action and reaction.

Many of us learned cause and effect in elementary school during science lessons.

Cause and Effect in Science

Science seeks to explain and understand the occurrences in the natural world. Things happen for a reason. There is a definite cause for an effect! The cause can be why something happens.

The effect, consequently, is the description of what happened. Before we look at language examples of cause and effect, it makes sense to check out ideas in the real world.

Ask your child, “What do you think will happen if a popsicle is exposed to the sun for a while?”

Allowing the popsicle to melt offers an opportunity for you to refer to the sun’s heat and its effect on the popsicle.

During winter, you can do the same experiment with small cups of water. You may ask, ‘What caused the water to turn into ice?” The answer would be the temperature outside!

Play a simple game in which you verbally offer a situation or a cause. Ask your child to fill in an action or an effect. You could start by saying, “It was snowing outside.” Your child could then respond by saying, “All kids have sleds.” If you said, “Someone rang the doorbell,” your child could respond, “Our dog began to bark.”

In this activity, there is no single correct answer, just like there is no single cause and one effect!

Cause and Effect in Language

We can apply the same logic to situational language text.

  1. “Upon seeing that his daughter’s boyfriend had rutted up the yard, Marcus was seething with rage.” Here the cause is the boyfriend rutting up the yard and the effect is the father seething with anger.

When something happens that makes something else occur, a cause and effect take shape!

  are often used in informational texts. For instance, a text may say that when the temperature is low, a person will start to tremble. The cold weather is the cause and the shivering because of the cold is the effect!

Cause and effect relationships can also be found in stories. For example, If Sally is late to school, she might lose her break time. Being late to school is the cause and the effect or the result is losing the recess time.

Examples in Sentences

Let’s look at another sentence: ‘The rain came down so hard that all leaves fell off the tree.”

We know that the effect is the leaves fell off the tree. What is the cause? The rain.

Here is another example: “Bill was skating on a hockey rink. The laces on one of his skates came loose. Bill couldn’t control his skating and ran into another skater when they both fell down.”

We know that the effect here is that Bill ran into a skater and fell. What is the cause? The laces came loose!

While this is true, the actual cause is more complicated. The laces on one of his skates came loose, which caused him not to be in control of skating, which caused him to run into another skater, which resulted in both falling down.

A domino effect resulted once the laces came loose.

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Sentences dealing with cause and effect usually involve an action and its result. You can usually find sentences built this way by keywords and phrases. These keywords typically include: so, since, as a result of, because and therefore.

It is also important to note that the cause is usually written before the effect. In certain rare cases, you may find the effect written first.

For instance: Alphonso was getting very angry and frustrated because none of his good deeds were being recognized as good.

Cause: none of his good deeds were being recognized as good

Effect: Alphonso was getting very angry and frustrated

Key Word: Because

Transition Words: Cause and Effect

You must realize that no matter what order you present the cause and effect in your sentences, you cannot have an effect precede a cause!

To help better understand again, here are  
  that we have dissected to separate the cause and effect parts

Example 1:

It had started to rain so Molly and Sam had to run inside.

Cause: It had started to rain.

Effect: Molly and Sam had to run inside.

Keyword: so

Example 2:

Since it was very cold outside, John built up a big fire in his fireplace.

Cause: It was very cold outside

Effect: John built up a big fire in his fireplace.

Keyword: Since


Using the right transition words in elementary English can demonstrate cause and effect well in sentences. Words like Because, since, as, and due to show a cause or reason. Words like so, therefore, thus, hence, alongside, and as a result of, show an effect or result.


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