I review the cause/effect map from yesterday. We read the map to remind students what information we have gathered thus far. I ask: Does anyone remember what a CAUSE is? What is an EFFECT? We are going to turn and talk with a partner about what we remember about cause and effect. What is a question you could ask your partner about cause and effect?
I give students think time and allow for suggestions. (What is cause? What is effect? Do you remember what cause and effect means?) How would you answer one of those questions? I give students think time and allow for suggestions. (A cause is ___. An effect is ___)
I monitor and assist groups where necessary through guided inquiry and talking off the map. For example, I might say to a group who is struggling: If I ran down the hallway to recess, what might the effect of that be? (get in trouble, trip and fall…) What might cause me to get a drink of water?
This allows for me to tailor instruction to meet their needs and give that 2:1 assistance that so many kids need but we so often don’t have time to give! I also get a feel for who is getting it at what level. Many kids can recognize and identify cause and effect, but they cannot generate a cause or an effect. This really helps guide the read because I know how much scaffolding to offer and who my ‘go to’ kids are for explanations!
I review the cause effect graphic and explain to students what it helps us identify and understand. Say: Today we will be looking for what happens with our shadows and why those things happen to our shadows. We call the reason the ‘casue.’ Everybody say CAUSE. (students chant ‘cause’) What actually happens to the shadow is called the ‘effect.’ Everybody say EFFECT. (students chant ‘effect) To clarify understanding, I say: For example, if our classroom door opens, that would be the EFFECT. What can cause our classroom door to open? (Let students answer) When we walk to our room in the morning I open the door for our class. What is the effect, the result, of me opening the door? (Let students answer) CAUSE EFFECT MAP
I have found that using familiar examples, ones that are meaningful to kindergartners, is the most effective way to solidfy understanding. I hover around examples that relate to school or home, as that really is the extent of their experience!
I begin reading Shadows. Read pp. 9-16 today. I stop on p. 9 and ask students what causes the dark shadow?(the building blocking the sun’s light) Stop on p. 10 and ask what makes the faint or light shadow? (the bottle makes a light shadow because it doesn’t block very much sunlight) Stop on p. 11 and ask, “What effect does one lamp have on the boy’s shadow? (It makes one shadow.) Stop on p. 12 and ask, “ What effect do two lamps have on the boy’s shadow? (They make 2 shadows) What effect do three lamps have on the boy’s shadow? (They make three shadows)
We practice cause/effect with a matching task that challenges kids to match something that happened with why it happened. I start by acting out some examples. First, I put on my sunglasses and ask students: What might cause me to put on my sunglasses? (It is sunny) A sunny day is the cause and me putting on my sunglasses is the effect. Everybody say CAUSE. (students chant CAUSE) Say: In the morning announcements, Mrs. Avarhi says “Please stand for the flag salute.” What does that cause us to do? (we stand) Standing to say the flag salute is the effect of her telling us to stand. Everybody say EFFECT. (students chant EFFECT)
We then do the activity together. We do the first two whole group, placing the matching effect with its cause. I just have students cut and place the pictures in the boxes without gluing them. This is because I want them to try to match the last two on their own. As we place these first two, we are also practicing the language of cause/effect.
After they have place the last two where they think they belong, students raise their hand for me to check for accuracy. If they are done correctly, the students may get glue and glue their pictures. If they are placed incorrectly, I talk to the student about what the events are and how they go together.