ERIC Number: EJ1045998
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
Science 101: How Do We Determine: "Cause and Effect?"
Science and Children, v52 n3 p72-74 Nov 2014
At first glance it seems easy to attribute cause and effect when it's not applicable, either through mistakenly taking every correlation as a cause and effect relationship, misinterpreting the meaning of independent and dependent variables, or not focusing on direct causes. Sometimes it's easy to help students understand where they're mistaken in cause and effect relationships, but other times it can be difficult. In this article, Bill Robertson invites teachers to ask students what might happen if we got rid of all the ants or bees in the world. At first they might not think that's such a bad idea, because likely many of them aren't fond of ants and bees, and have no understanding of what makes dead organisms "disappear," no understanding of how we get soil, and no understanding of how plants go about making more plants. Cause and effect is at the heart of much of of science, but that doesn't mean the relationships are always obvious.
Descriptors: Science Instruction, Elementary School Science, Scientific Concepts, Correlation, Misconceptions, Graphs, Predictor Variables
National Science Teachers Association. 1840 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA 22201-3000. Tel: 800-722-6782; Fax: 703-243-3924; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://www.nsta.org
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A