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Thursday, May 10, 2012

If You Give Your Teacher A...

Using "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie", or any "If You Give a..." books to teach Cause & Effect is all over the  blogosphere and Pinterest, and it's easy to see why: The kids get a kick out of them, and they present cause and effect in a very simple, easy to understand, format.

Cause and Effect is our focus skill this week {per Storytown}, and so I read "If You Give a Dog a Donut", and we recorded our causes and effects on chart paper {which I forgot to take a picture of, of course}.  The kids got really involved, and even pointed out that many of the "effects" became the new "causes".  I was totally psyched that they pointed this out, because I really wanted them to see that, especially in life, cause and effect isn't always so cut and dry.

After we finished reading our book and recording our causes and effects, we played a little game.  I came up with a person or a profression, and they did the rest.  Here's how it went:

Me: Fireman

Literal Student: "If you give a fireman a hose, he'll put a fire out".
Class Clown:" "If you give a fireman a siren, he'll use it to go through red lights".

Me: Policeman

Literal Student B: "If you give a policeman a badge, he'll arrest criminals."
Same Class Clown: "If you give a policeman a donut, he'll ask for coffee to go with it."

We did this a few more times with a baby, and old man, and a few people we knew, like our principal.  Our little class clown eventually influenced the crowd, and we ended up with a lot of comical {yet surprisingly accurate} answers.

Then, I told them they would be giving me something, and they needed to say what I would do.  They're eyes lit up and there were lots of "Yesssssssssses".  This was because they knew this would be the easiest assignment in 2nd Grade History.  Because, well because, Miss K LOVES CHEESEBURGERS.  And she talks about them ALL THE TIME!!!!  And her students ask her ALL THE TIME, "What would you do for a cheesburger?"  {The answer is, pretty much anything and everything.}

So I had to say to them, right away, "Now, I know what you're thinking, but please, please, please try to think of other things I like.  Think about other things I talk about all the time"

Blank Stares.

"You know, like something important I'm planning {my wedding}, a certain someone I love very much {my dog, Georgie}, or my favorite book {Miss Rumphius}."

And a lot of them started nodding.  But I still got a lot of cheeseburgers.  {I am NOT complaining}.

This activity was so fun for everyone.  It was fun for them because they got to write something about me on a personal, comical level.  And it was really fun for me, because I got to see what they picked up from me.

You can download this fun freebie from my TpT shop, click the picture below to head there.  I strongly suggest using it the next team you teach cause and effect, but it's also fun for anytime, especially the end of the year when they know you well!


Have fun with it, and as always, please leave feedback on our blog or at our TpT shop to let us know how you like it!



  1. Thanks for the freebie! I need a good laugh, so I will be using this :)
    My Second Sense

    1. Thanks, I'd love to know how it turns out! Have fun!!!


  2. What a great idea! My students and I love those books. This is a great way to teach cause and effect (which can be rather challenging sometimes!)

    Sara :)
    Smiling In Second Grade

    1. Cause and Effect is definitely a challenge on our room!

      Have fun, let me know how it turns out!

  3. This is great and so much fun! I know there will be lots of funny ones!

    Heather's Heart

  4. I love Laura Numeroff, and I love your idea of how to use her books!
    Apples and ABC's


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