These worksheets examine the relationships between cause and effect, and offer exercises for your students.

In any story we often see major events or phenomena take place and this is the basis of why the story was told or written in the first place. Having the ability to identify the root cause of this is event is what separate the average audience member from the critical thinkers. It is natural for any person to want to understand why something has happened. There are several keywords that often lead us to pinpoint the cause and effect relationships. The words that are the most common indicators include: therefore, consequently, this, and then. Once we learn to master this skill, we can identify turning points in stories and tales. Strong readers can often identify these sections while reading. Just because an event follows another doesn't necessarily mean it is a consequence of that event. This is known as the post hoc ergo propter hoc ("after this, therefore because of this") fallacy, and is one reason the scientific method was developed.

The following collection of worksheets offers example sentences of cause and effect relationships. Students must identify which piece is which. Answer keys are provided where necessary. Teach your students to be wary of false correlations! Helpful hint! In reading and writing, the words "because" and "so" (and their synonyms) can be good indicators that a focused relationship is present.

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Print Cause and Effect Worksheets

Click the buttons to print each worksheet and associated answer key.

Sentence Worksheet

Stormy Sentences

Write a complete sentence that includes both of the need parts to help it make sense. Start by evaluating what is present.

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Identification Worksheet

Part Identification

Determine which is the cause and which is the effect in each sentence.

What Fits? Worksheet

Finding What Fits

Underline the cause in each sentence. They don't often present themselves quickly. You may need to read these sentences several times.

Matching Worksheet

Matching Sides

Find the matching parts and then write out the full sentence. Put everything together for the reader.

Sentence Match Worksheet

What's Up?

Read each sentence. Match the sentences that go together. Then rewrite them into the table below, putting the sentences in to the correct columns.

Example Worksheet

Example Me Up

You will need to come up with the effect here. Then you will put it all together and compose a completely new sentences.

Explaining Worksheet

What Happened and Why?

Read each sentence. Answer the questions. You will explain what happened and why it did.

Mess Worksheet

The Big Mess

Read the story. Complete the chart below. The chart will ask you to simply breakdown the story into a series of parts.

Root Cause Worksheet

What's the Cause?

Read the effect and then write a cause. Then write a complete sentence that includes both the cause and the effect. Follow the example.

Evaluation Worksheet

Read Into It

Break apart each sentence and see if you can classify which of the works deserves most of the attention here.

Beach Ball Worksheet

Beach Balls

Swing through all the Beach Balls and see what you have going on. This is a fun worksheet for students.

Mixed Skills Worksheet

Mixed Up Sentences

The sentences below are all mixed up. Unscramble the sentences to match the causes with the right effects.

Review Worksheet

A Dragon Tale

Follow the example and you should be good to go. A dragon is a terrible thing to waste.

My Effect Worksheet

Getting Effected

We really enjoyed the sentences. See if you do too. Pick them apart while you're at it.

Performance Worksheet

A Smashing Performance!

Read the story. Complete the chart below. This will help you be able to diagnose the theme of different sentences.

What Is Cause and Effect in Literature?

"Cause and effect" is a universal phenomenon, and it is one of those relationships that a person learns by himself at an early age. It is taught at school levels in literature and writing classes to highlight its importance in real life. The cause is the motive force behind the action, and the effect is the reaction to that action.

In literature, the law of cause-and-effect is much prevalent. It is one of the moral elements that are hidden behind the text. Authors use scenarios to portray how an action performed by a character can affect its surroundings and how it changes the course of events.

When identifying and writing about a cause-and-effect situation for a particular piece of work, one must decide how it is presented to the reader. Is a single action making several effects, or do several causes bring about a single effect? While writing a cause-and-effect analysis, you must follow one of these two methods: Block structure and chain structure.

A block structure is when causes are written in one go, and effects are written afterward. On the contrary, a chain structure is writing a cause and effect side-by-side, just like a chain of events and their outcomes.

Examples Of Cause And Effect In Literature

Literature is filled with the cause and effect examples in which a protagonist's decisions give rise to the conflict as an effect to counter the impact another decision is made. We shall look into the famous cause and effect novels in detail below.

Emma by Jane Austen

The youngest of the two daughters of Mr. Woodhouse, Emma, is the protagonist with ego development issues in her personality. This gives rise to many problems in her perfect life. "I am always right" and "Something I wish for must occur by any means" does her more harm than good in life.

Emma sabotaged her friend, Ms. Smith's love life by forcing her to think of Mr. Elton in a husband's capacity and breaking her potential relationship with Mr. Martin. This caused a chain of events in which both Emma and her friend fell in love with the same person, Mr. Knightley.

When Emma gets to know about this, she realizes how her playing God had bitten her. However, things do turn out to be in Emma's favor as Ms. Smith backs down for Emma's sake and marries Mr. Martin.

Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare

There were several causes that became the reason for the death of Romeo and Juliet. One of them was the feud between families: Montague and Capulet. The rivalry caused Romeo and Juliet to meet secretly and fall in love. The other cause is the duel in which Tybalt, Juliet's first cousin, challenged Romeo. Tybalt died at the hands of Romeo, and he was banished from the city.

The third cause was Frair Lawrence; he was the one who got Romeo and Juliet married in secrecy and then gave them advice all about the situation. The other people's interference, like the nurse, who kept the marriage secret and became the messenger between two love birds, ultimately caused the downfall of their happiness.

Such a meaningful relationship between time and decision can give rise to outcomes that one may never think about. The law of cause and effect can be studied more extensively by providing time to the literature section in your library.