Teaching Kids About Cause and Effect

Cause and Effect | What is cause and effect and how can we teach our children to understand that everything they do has a ripple effect on our world? In this Just For Kids Episode, Felice explores the meaning and how we can encourage our children to lay the foundations they need in their lives, now. | #podcast #homeschoolpodcast #homeschool #justforkids #teachingkidsTeaching Kids Cause and Effect

What is cause and effect and how can we teach our children to understand that everything they do has a ripple effect on our world? In this Just For Kids Episode, Felice explores the meaning and how we can encourage our children to lay the foundations they need in their lives, now.

Please visit my website at MediaAngels.com and be sure to sign up for our monthly planners. We have new character planners each month, and this month it is on the topic of Tolerance. This planner has some fun activities that you can do with your children and I think parents really appreciate the page with scenarios. I ask the children questions that they can act out or write their answers. They are open-ended. At the end of the month, the children can even earn a character award that is provided. After the month is over you can only get the planners by purchase on the Media Angels website.

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If you drop a pebble in a body of water, like a pond what happens? That’s right. You see a ripple effect. The act of dropping a stone causes the water to ripple and this is something we can see with our own eyes, but the reason this happens is because of any action on your part. You took the time and energy to throw the stone. The same happens without actions.

This is a scientific law, did you know that Issac Newton had theories about laws and motion, and there is actually a third scientific law of motion that is taught as part of physics, it states for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. So, that explains scientifically why this happens but now for the hard part, controlling our own actions.

In the last podcast, we talked about the golden rule and how this is something that we should do, treat others the way we want to be treated. In this way, we are setting an example for others and we can cause a good effect as a leader who does things that are right and trustworthy. This causes a positive effect.

An effect happens because of what we do or it also follows a “what will happen if…” question. What will happen if I punch my brother? What will happen if I spill this glass of water, what will happen if I eat an entire bag of chocolate? The effect comes directly, once again like the pebble from our actions.

An amazing thing happens if we are aware that what we do – through our entirely given by God-free will – can cause things not only today but in the future. How does this happen? Well, now you know…by your direct actions. Some things are very easy to figure out and others are what we would call gray areas, those areas that are harder and take thinking or work to figure out. We can brainstorm some of these areas with our family. Here are a few you can discuss with your parent at home:

  1. If I spend all of my free time playing games I will…
  2. If I fix my bed every morning the effect will be…
  3. Treating others as I want to be treated will lead to…
  4. If I pitch a fit and am loud and rude I will… (helpful hint here: no, you will not always get your way.)
  5. I can lead by example doing what is right and just or I can lead by example doing what is always right for myself and this will cause the effect of…

What are some of your answers? Can you imagine a world where we think through our actions before we do them? What do you think the outcome would be of this way of thinking first before we act? In many ways, we as adults do this because we have already lived longer and have had the experience. We have learned by our mistakes and we have learned to fix these by actions that are right and just.

Long ago when I taught school I remember a sixth-grader telling me that I didn’t understand him at all, and there was no way that I could. I looked at him and said, “That’s right. I never was a sixth-grader, I skipped right over the sixth grade. I went from 11 to 23 (my age at that time) … do you think that is right? Of course, he said no. So, I said, I was in sixth grade and our teacher made us sit with our hands folded on our desks while she spoke, no paper, no pencils, and definitely no devices anywhere to be found. After she was finished we took our lessons and worked on them, copied from the board, and never spoke up unless spoken to. I knew at that time that I didn’t like school and would work hard to be done with school — and here I am years later a teacher. Obviously, that plan didn’t work well! Here I am many years later still writing curriculum and still teaching kids. Why? Because I love it!

We can make plans as a kid and guess what? Our plans might change but one thing you can do as a kid is to realize that what you do has an effect on others and you may or may not get away with bad behavior, this time. But realize at some point it will catch up to you. When we see people who commit crimes or have no self-control because of drug or alcohol use, we know they were not born that way, at some point one bad decision, on top of another and another made them the way they are today.

So, look at your life and take charge. Look at the decisions you will make and chose wisely. It can be the difference between a life that is filled with joy and happiness (as much as possible on this side of heaven) or one that is filled with mistakes that we have to constantly apologize for. A quick aside here to the idea of accidents. I do believe accidents happen but I also know that saying, “It is just an accident” can lead you to lie to yourself. You know deep down in your heart if it really was an accident or it was done on purpose. And, if you continue to lie to yourself, guess what? You will soon believe your lies and you are heading down the wrong path… a path that is wide and leads to, at some point judgment.

So, what is it going to be? One thing I do love about kids is that you get it – you see the big picture and I think we as parents often do not give you enough credit for understanding. You know what is right, you know what is just you know that you can make a difference in your world for the better. So the question is are you going to think before you act? Yes or No? This may be one of the most important decisions you ever make!

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