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Songs of Survival
ReadOasis Step 3 It was my twentieth birthday. I was sitting in the family piano room when my father opened the door. He had a big smile on his face, and he said, "Happy Birthday!" Then he handed me a big box. Inside was a new guitar. It was... Read more
Black Beauty
ReadOasis Step 2 Anna Mary Sewell (March 30, 1820 - April 25, 1878) was an English novelist. She wrote the classic novel Black Beauty. Her mother taught her at home until the age of twelve. Then Anna started attending school. Two years later, Anna slipped while walking home from... 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
The Simpsons
ReadOasis Step 2 The Simpsons is a TV show about a funny American family. Using comedy and satire, the show criticizes American life and culture. It was first broadcast in December 1989. Its 26th season began in September 2014, and it is the longest-running animated program in America. It... Read more
The Adventures of a Folk Singer
ReadOasis Step 3 (Part 1) "I think a poet is anybody who wouldn't call himself a poet." - Bob Dylan It was January 1961. In the cold north of Minnesota, a young man of 19 years packed his bags and his guitar.  He was crossing 1,900 kilometers to New... 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
Try with Ukulele
ReadOasis Step 2 At age 18, Mandy Harvey lost most of her ability to hear. As a child and during her teenage years, Mandy loved to sing. But she stopped singing for a time after she went deaf. But then she learned to feel a song's beat through the... Read more
Walt Disney’s Impossible Dream
ReadOasis Step 2 In 1934, Walt Disney began plans to make a movie. He wanted to create the first full-length animated film. But when people heard about his idea, they said it was a mistake. They thought it would destroy the Disney studio. Even Disney's brother and wife tried... Read more
The Goodbye Bacon Blues
ReadOasis Step 3 With apologies to all my pig farming and hog farming friends, I wrote this song, a blues song about bacon. Today I read the news. They say that bacon is bad for you. For effect, it’s like a cigarette. If you eat a lot, you'll be... Read more
Johnny Cash: The Man in Black (Step 2)
ReadOasis Step 2 Johnny started singing, but he looked uncomfortable. The audition was not going well. Sam Phillips, the producer, listened politely. But he didn't smile. Johnny kept singing, but with no confidence. Then Mr. Phillips said, "Hold up!" Johnny and his friends stopped playing. Phillips said, "I hate... Read more
To Any Reader
By Robert Louis Stevenson ReadOasis Step 1 As from the house your mother sees You playing round the garden trees, So you may see, if you will look Through the windows of this book, Another child, far, far away, And in another garden, play. But do not think you... Read more
Music and Mindfulness – with Christopher Hardy
ReadOasis Step 2 Christopher took his seat in the middle of the concert hall. A flow of people filled the room. The lights went dark, and all the talking heads turned silent. In the quiet and dark, electricity filled the air as people waited for the music. And when... Read more
The Biggest Band (Step 4)
ReadOasis Step 4 It was a hot August night in New York City, 1965. Two thousand policemen supervising security watched anxiously as 55,000 fans filled Shea Stadium. But this was not for a baseball game; it was for the first ever stadium concert in the history of rock and... Read more
W.C. Handy: Father of the Blues (Step 2)
By Maria Sonora ReadOasis Step 2 (Part 1) W.C. Handy at age 19 "Then I saw the beauty of primitive music." W.C. Handy, Father of the Blues W.C. Handy grew up in the southern part of the United States, in a small town in Alabama. His father was a... Read more
The Wind
By Robert Louis Stevenson ReadOasis Step 2 I saw you toss the kites on high And blow the birds about the sky; And all around I heard you pass, Like ladies' skirts across the grass-- O wind, a-blowing all day long, O wind, that sings so loud a song!... Read more
A Story of Robin Hood
ReadOasis Step 3 (Part 1) In the rough and hard days of King Richard and King John, there were many great woods in the land of England. The most famous of these was Sherwood Forest. It is the place where the king often went to hunt deer and other... Read more
Why is Christmas on December 25th?
ReadOasis Step 2 Would you celebrate someone’s birthday even if no one knew the day when he or she was born? That is what happens around the world every year on December 25th, when most Christians remember Jesus’ birthday. We know a lot about Jesus. But we don’t know... Read more
Themes of A Christmas Carol
ReadOasis Step 5 "Oh! But he was a tight-fisted hand at the grindstone, Scrooge! a squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous, old sinner! Hard and sharp as flint, from which no steel had ever struck out generous fire; secret, and self-contained, and solitary as an oyster." This is the... Read more
The First Lady of Song
ReadOasis Step 3 After her mother died, Ella had a lot of trouble. Her grades dropped at school. She couldn't find a good place to live. She became an orphan, a child whose parents are dead and gone. Eventually, she was sent to the New York Training School for... Read more
Are You Sleeping?
ReadOasis Step 2 The bells are ringing, but John is sleeping. It's time to wake up! This is the basic setting for the song "Are You Sleeping." In the English speaking world, many people know this song, and they can also sing the first lines in French. Frère Jacques,... Read more