Two Great Painters
ReadOasis Step 2 There once was a painter named Zeuxis. He could paint life-like pictures. People often mistook his pictures for the real things which they represented. At one time he painted the picture of some fruit. It seemed so real that birds flew down and tried to eat... Read more
The Motown Sound (Step 2)
ReadOasis Step 2 You don't know soul music if you don't know the Motown sound. Motown is a record company from Detroit Michigan. And one of the greatest Motown artists of all time is Stevie Wonder. Wonder has sold over 100,000,000 records and won 25 Grammy Awards. But he... Read more
On the Road Again (Step 1)
ReadOasis Step 1 Little Willie was born into hard times. On October 29, 1929, the American economy went bad. It was called Black Tuesday. Many people lost all their money. By Willie’s day of birth in 1933, around 25% of Americans had lost their jobs. People were hopeless, poor,... Read more
Escape at Bedtime
By Robert Louis Stevenson ReadOasis Step 3 Photo by NASA   The lights from the parlour and kitchen shone out Through the blinds and the windows and bars; And high overhead and all moving about, There were thousands of millions of stars. There ne’er were such thousands of leaves... Read more
The Motown Sound (Step 3)
ReadOasis Step 3 The Motown Museum (Wikipedia) Soul music combines rhythm and blues and gospel. Like the blues, soul arose out of the black experience in America, and soul musicians took these styles out of the black church and into the world and the streets. They confidently and proudly... Read more
Miles Davis, Jazz Legend
ReadOasis Step 2 Miles Davis (May 26, 1926 – September 28, 1991) was one of the most important musicians of the twentieth century. He helped to develop many styles of modern jazz music. These styles include cool jazz and jazz fusion. Cool jazz has a calm, relaxed, and smooth... Read more
Picasso and the Beatles
ReadOasis Step 4 The Spanish painter Picasso demonstrated remarkable artistic aptitude at a very young age. According to his mother, his first words were "piz, piz." "Piz" is short for "lápiz," which means "pencil" in Spanish. Picasso's father was an art professor who raised his son in a world... Read more
The Old Man and the Sea
ReadOasis Step 2 An old man was fishing alone in a small boat. He was off the coast of Cuba near the town of Cabanas. He hooked a marlin, a great fish with a long, sharp spear for a nose. The powerful fish pulled the small boat out to... Read more
Knocking on Heaven’s Door
ReadOasis Step 2 He came out of nowhere. In 1961, he just appeared in New York City, wanting to do music. And in one short year, he held a record contract in his hand. By the middle of the 1960s, he had reached the top of the pop music... Read more
If by Rudyard Kipling
In 1907, Rudyard Kipling received the Nobel Prize for Literature. He was the first English-language writer to receive the prize. Kipling was a innovator in the art of short stories. His children’s books, like Jungle Book, are classics of children's literature. Kipling also wrote poetry. One of his famous poems... Read more
Paul Desmond and Take Five
ReadOasis Step 3 By Maria Sonora “I would also like to thank my father, who discouraged me from playing the violin.” These are the words of Paul Desmond. He is one of the most popular musicians to come out of the West Coast cool jazz scene. Surely, he liked... Read more
Drifting Cowboy: Hank Williams (Step 3)
By Maria Sonora ReadOasis Step 3 (Part 1) By MGM Records via Wikimedia Commons (Public Domain) Hank would never make it to his destination. There were too many problems. It was icy cold outside. Covered with a blanket, he sat in the back seat of his light blue Cadillac.... Read more
A Sentimental Imagination
ReadOasis Step 3 (Part 1) I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. Charles Dickens (1786-1851) Most people know Charles Dickens for his famous ghost story: A Christmas Carol. But many people don’t realize that Dickens was the most notable English author of the... Read more
My Shadow
By Robert Louis Stevenson ReadOasis Step 3 Creative Commons Photo by blykst I have a little shadow that goes in and out with me, And what can be the use of him is more than I can see. He is very, very like me from the heels up to... Read more
ET and Intelligent Life
ReadOasis Step 4 The film ET charmed the hearts of millions of children and adults. It was humorous and compelling, and it told an inspiring story about love and companionship. In one scene, ET points his finger to the sky, and he says, "ET phone home." This simple phrase... Read more
Inception: Dreams Inside Dreams
ReadOasis Step 3 (Part 1) The great movie critic Roger Ebert called Inception “a movie immune to spoilers.” A spoiler gives away the ending of a story. But with Inception, even if you knew how it ended, it wouldn’t matter unless you knew what happened before the ending. In... Read more
Fred Astaire, Dancer Extraordinaire
ReadOasis Step 2 If you watch Fred Astaire dance, you will be amazed at his grace. He seems so relaxed, like his feet are dancing on air. He makes genius look effortless. But like all great dancers, Astaire practiced his routines for hours and hours. He was a hard-working... Read more
The Artful Geisha (Step 2)
ReadOasis Step 2 Geisha are traditional female entertainers from Japan. They are skilled at various Japanese arts, such as traditional music, dancing, and poetry. The word "geisha" comes from (GEI) meaning "art" and (SHA) meaning "person." In this sense, a geisha is an artist. In the 1920's, about 80,000... Read more
Serious About Humor
It's early in the morning. A funny looking man is getting ready for work. He casually looks up at the clock on the wall. Then his eyes pop wide open. He's running late! In a rush, he hurries to the kitchen. He opens the coffee jar and fills his... Read more
Babe: A Good Mannered Pig
ReadOasis Step 2 Babe is a young pig who wants to become a sheep dog. He is separated from his family, and he finds himself on a strange farm. Babe becomes confused and lonely. But a friendly sheep dog takes care of him. And Babe slowly adjusts to his... Read more