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The Contender. 2.3.1 Cause & Effect. Materials Required. “The Contender” article Pen/pencil paper. Activating Background Knowledge. Copy this quote into your journal. “Overcome your boundaries and achieve your dreams.”. Activating Background Knowledge.

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the contender

The Contender

2.3.1 Cause & Effect

materials required
Materials Required
  • “The Contender” article
  • Pen/pencil
  • paper
activating background knowledge
Activating Background Knowledge

Copy this quote into your journal.

“Overcome your boundaries and achieve your dreams.”

activating background knowledge4
Activating Background Knowledge

Copy it again using your other hand!

“Overcome your boundaries and achieve your dreams.”

activating background knowledge5
Activating Background Knowledge
  • What were some difficulties you had trying to complete this task? How did that make you feel?
  • Write a paragraph on your paper about individuals you know, have read about, or have seen in movies who have overcome physical challenges.
  • Write each of the following vocabulary words that you cannot define.
contender vocabulary
Paragraph One



Paragraph Six


Paragraph Eleven



Paragraph Thirteen



“Contender” Vocabulary
contender vocabulary8
Paragraph Fifteen


Paragraph Nineteen


Paragraph Twenty



Paragraph Twenty-one



Paragraph Twenty-two


Paragraph Twenty-four


“Contender” Vocabulary
vocabulary in context
Vocabulary in Context

“Before he started school, he was outfitted with prosthetics. Normally agile, Kyle was now restricted by false limbs.”

  • Use the Think Aloud strategy to define prosthetics from its context in the sentence.
vocabulary in context10
Vocabulary in Context
  • Highlight the following words in the passage.
    • Ultrasound (page 1)
    • Prosthetics (page 1)
    • Agile (page 1)
    • Prevailed (page 2)
    • Waiver (page 3)
    • Irrepressible (page 3)
vocabulary in context11
Vocabulary in Context

2. Working with a partner, discuss a possible meaning for each highlighted word based on its context clues.

3. The class will share its definitions and agree on one.

4. Record the best definition next to the highlighted word.

previewing the text
Previewing the Text
  • “What is a “contender?”
  • What might “going a few rounds” mean?
  • Titles provide clues to the content of a piece of writing.
  • Titles can also spark a reader’s interest.
setting a purpose
Setting a Purpose

Today you will be reading a story about an athlete who excelled in his sport despite a disability. Born without hands or legs, he competed and placed in national high school wrestling competitions. The passage you wrote in your learning logs with both your right and left hand, “Overcome your boundaries and achieve your dreams,” exemplifies his philosophy of life. Read to find out how he overcame his boundaries and achieved his dreams.

first reading
First Reading
  • The article is organized around actions taken in response to challenges faced by Kyle, his family, and the other people he encounters.
  • Read the article and highlight challenges and responses to those challenges.
first reading15
First Reading
  • Let’s read the first paragraph out loud.
  • What was a challenge or problem Kyle encountered in this paragraph?
  • Draw a T-chart on your paper and label it like the following slide. Then record the first challenge and Kyle’s response to it on the chart.
contender t chart cause effect
















“Contender” T-chart [Cause & Effect]
second reading
Second Reading
  • Read through the article again purposely looking for 5-7 challenges Kyle faces and his (5-7) responses to them.
  • Record these challenges and responses on your T-chart.
second reading group work
Second Reading- Group Work
  • In groups of four, share and compare your T-charts and
  • discuss the title of the article.
  • Add any challenges & responses to your chart that you didn’t originally record.
  • Why choose this title for the article?
second reading group work19
Second Reading- Group Work
  • Propose an alternate title for the article that would appropriately reflect the main idea. Choose three text-based details to support your group’s choice.
  • Write your choice on paper. All group members need a copy.
  • We will share these choices as a whole group.
contender cause effect sample answers

1. rollercoaster

2. Arms/legs stunted

3. prosthetics

4. Writing/coloring

5. Strangers’ reactions

6. Losing at wrestling

7. Positive attitude


1. Threaten big guy

2. Gets along w/o

3. Forget it!

4. Did it!

5. Tiger/shark/humor

6. Training/no quitting

7. Inspired/antidepressant

“Contender” Cause-Effect sample answers
culminating activity
Culminating Activity
  • How did the author of “The Contender” illustrate Kyle Maynard’s self-stated philosophy of life, “Anyone can overcome their boundaries and achieve their dreams?” Provide three examples from the text in your response.
  • Write about one of the highlighting strategies you used today and how you could use it another time you read for school.