Causation: To Accompany Frog and Toad “The Garden”

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Area: Epistemology, History and Social Studies, Logic, Metaphysics, Science
Grade Level: High School & Beyond, Middle School
Topics: causation, reasoning
Estimated Time Necessary: 45-60 minuutes

Lesson Plan

Objectives:
To think together about causation.
This lesson plan can be used on its own or as an accompaniment for older students after reading Lobel's short story "The Garden." Students will think together about the nature of causation, how we can know when causation is present, and whether events that happen simultaneously always have a causal connection.

This lesson plan can be used on its own or as an accompaniment to the Arnold Lobel Frog and Toad story, “The Garden.”

Divide students into groups of 3-4. Ask each group to come up with 2-3 examples of the following three cases:

  1. When two events take place in quick succession, and one event causes the other.
  2. When two events take place in quick succession, and both events cause each other.
  3. When two events take place in quick succession, but neither causes the other.

See Discussion Questions tab for discussion prompts.

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Discussion Questions

  • Can we prove that one thing causes another?
  • Is it easier to determine causes in nature than between humans?
  • Is it possible to have no causal connection at all when two seemingly exclusive events are happening at the same time?
  • Even when we get the outcome we want, might we sometimes fundamentally mistake its cause?
This lesson plan was created for PLATO by: Ishita Solanki.

This work is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

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