<< Back to Lessons Index

7th Grade Language Arts / Lesson 9: Cause & Effect

Cause and Effect

Writers tell readers about things that happen as well as what caused them to happen.

A writer can be very specific when describing causes and effect.   Some words signal causal relationships:

Examples:

I'm crying because I'm happy.

I'm late; therefore, I must hurry.


Implied Causes and Effects

Writers do not always use words to tell you the cause for an event.  Instead, they will imply what the cause is.

Example: It was a warm day in early spring.  People filled the beach, but no one was in the water.

Why did the people stay out of the water?  It was still early spring, so the water was too cold.


Implied Effects or Conclusions

Writers can also imply what effect or conclusion may result from some action or event.  The reader is asked to infer the effect or conclusion.  This is done by giving the reader enough information to guess what happens.

Example:  With suitcases in hand, Jenny ran up the station steps, down the corridor, and onto the train platform.  She caught her breath and heaved a sigh of relief.

Why was Jenny relieved.  We can infer she was relieved because she hadn't missed the train.