8th Grade‎ > ‎

Ms. McFadden (8th LA)

Name: Sarah McFadden
Phone: 720-424-0665 EXT *40665

About Me
I grew up in Sterling IL and attended the University of Illinois. There, I received a bachelor's degree in English with a minor in Secondary Education. Post graduation, I moved to Davis, California where I worked in a group home facility for teenage boys. After a year, my husband and I decided to move to Denver. We fell in love with the city and community immediately. Last year, we were blessed with a daughter who turned one in September. Since moving to Denver, I have taught 7th and 8th grade Literacy at Henry World School. I am excited to join the team here at Merrill and I know we will have a wonderful year pushing ourselves to become critical readers and inspiring writers!

Current Unit

Finding Home: Refugees

In this unit, students will develop their ability to read and understand complex text as they consider the challenges of fictional and real refugees. In the first unit, students will begin Inside Out & Back Again, by Thanhha Lai, analyzing how critical incidents reveal the dynamic nature of the main character, Ha, a 10-year-old Vietnamese girl whose family is deciding whether to flee during the fall of Saigon. The novel, poignantly told in free verse, will challenge students to consider the impact of specific word choice on tone and meaning. Students will build their ability to infer and analyze text, both in discussion and through writing. They then will read informational text to learn more about the history of war in Vietnam, and the specific historical context of Ha’s family’s struggle during the fall of Saigon. In Unit 2, students will build knowledge about refugees’ search for a place to call home. 

 As they continue to move through the novel, they will focus on how particular incidents move the story forward and reveal aspects of Ha’s character. Unit 2 culminates in which students examine how the universal refugee experience causes the refugee’s life to be turned inside out and eventually return back again. In Unit 3, having finished the novel, students will reread critical incidents, while also working in research groups to study the experiences of refugees from one of several cultures. Students will use this knowledge to write to write two, free verse narrative poems that capture the universal refugee experience. 

*EL Curriculum



Students will complete an exit ticket at the end of class everyday. If they do not finish in class, it is due by 10:00 pm that night.

Students will have an "Article of the Week" assigned every Monday on Schoology. They must read and respond in writing via an extended response paragraph by Friday at 10:00 pm.

Finally, students should be reading for 30 minutes EVERY NIGHT at home. 
Quizzes and Tests

Vocabulary Quizzes will take place EVERY Friday.
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