Get Down to Business in English
ReadOasis Step 2 (Part 1) A Big Decision As usual, the boss spoke clearly and in short sentences. “Okay, it’s decided. This meeting is over. You all know what to do.” One by one, the managers closed their notebooks and stood up. There were no jokes and no laughter.... Read more
Habit Power (Step 3)
ReadOasis Step 3 Will walked into the large office area and looked around. He was carrying a cup of coffee, and he spilled some on his hand. “Ouch!” he said. “That’s hot!” He looked around, but all the other workers were busy. They didn't even notice him. He walked over to... Read more
The Rules of Elite Success
ReadOasis Step 2 (Part 1) The computer sat in a funny little room at the Lakeside School in Seattle. It was a gift from the Mother’s Club. Costing $3,000, it was expensive at the time. But the mothers wanted the students to have a computer so they could have... Read more
Be a Starter: Poke the Box
ReadOasis Step 3 I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it. Pablo Picasso, Artist. It is a basic secret of success. To get skill, we need to do new things. Depending on the task, doing something new can... Read more
Making Work Fun: The Levity Effect (Step 3)
ReadOasis Step 3 A manager at a company was interviewing a job candidate. The manager said, “We need a very responsible person for this job. We need someone who can take charge.” The candidate’s eyes lit up, and he responded with great enthusiasm. “Sir, your search ends here! I’m... Read more
Lady Sings the Blues
ReadOasis Step 2(Part 1) Southern trees bear strange fruit Blood on the leaves and blood at the root Black bodies swinging in the southern breeze Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees These sad words open the song “Strange Fruit.” The song was written by Abel Meeropol, and it... Read more
Photo Art: Composition (1 in a Series)
ReadOasis Step 2 Cameras and photos are everywhere today. For example, Flickr is a photo sharing site. People put thousands of photos on Flickr every minute. And some of these photos are excellent. The photographer Ansel Adams once said this. "You don't take a photograph, you make it." This... Read more
Genius for Melody
ReadOasis Step 4 (Part 1) On June 2, 2010, President Barack Obama stood on a small stage in the White House. In the audience sat a mix of elite leaders and famous musicians. The President was about to give America’s highest award for popular music to Paul McCartney of the... Read more
Drifting Cowboy: Hank Williams
Hank would never make it to the concert. There were too many problems. It was icy cold outside. He sat under a cover in the back of his light blue Cadillac car. He was heading to the city of Canton, Ohio, to give a big concert on New Year’s... Read more
The Life of Vincent van Gogh
ReadOasis Step 2 Every Sunday morning, Vincent would put on his best clothes. When he was ready, he would walk to the small, red brick church where his father was the pastor. On the way, he would pass a burial ground, and he would see stones and grave markers.... Read more
Making Work Fun: The Levity Effect (Step 2)
ReadOasis Step 2 A manager at a company was interviewing a job candidate. The manager said, “We need a very responsible person for this job. We need someone who can take charge.” The candidate’s eyes lit up, and he answered with great confidence. “Sir, your search ends here! I’m... Read more
Practice Makes Genius (Step 3)
ReadOasis Step 3 Creative Commons Photo by Ludovic Peron Tiger Woods started playing golf when he was two years old. Basically from birth, Tiger was trained by his father to become a great golfer. As a boy, baseball marvel Ichiro Suzuki practiced with his father every day. The practice... Read more
A Simple Recipe for Learning English
ReadOasis Step 1 To learn English, we need words. Most English native speakers know between 12,000 and 20,000 words. Shakespeare used 31,534 words. And he probably knew more. How many words do you know? Naomi knows 95% of the words in Alice in Wonderland. She understands it without a... Read more
Pleasure, Success, and Reading
ReadOasis Step 2 (Part 1) Mary lay down on the sofa with her book, and she opened it again. She couldn’t wait to find out what would happen next. She loved science fiction, and this book was one of the most famous sci-fi books of all time: 2001: A... Read more
The Monkey’s Paw
ReadOasis Step 2 By W.W. Jacobs (Part 1) Outside the night was cold and wet. But inside the sitting room of the Whites' house, the curtains were shut and the fire burned brightly. Father and son were playing a game of chess. The son always took big risks when... Read more
Verbal, Visual, & Vocal Communication
ReadOasis Step 2 What is good communication? Psychologist Albert Mehrabian researches three elements of communication: words, tone of voice, and body language. More interestingly, Mehrabian studied how people communicate feelings and attitudes. If your body language and tone of voice disagree with your words, listeners tend to believe your body... Read more
Confucius: An Icon of Chinese Culture
By Max L. Knowles ReadOasis Step 4 (Part 1) The teacher spoke his mind. He told the truth as he saw it, and this apparently offended leaders who had great power. And so, the teacher, whose name was Confucius, was forced into exile. He had to leave the state... Read more
Einstein Equals Genius
ReadOasis Step 4 (Part 1) Albert’s father pulled the compass out of his pocket. He placed it on the table. The needle moved and then stopped, facing north as it always did. It was pulled by an invisible force, a magnetic field. For young Albert, the magnetic field that... Read more
The Trial of Galileo (Step 4)
ReadOasis Step 4 (Part 1) Ideas on Trial Galileo was old, weak, and ill. But he had to make the 200 mile journey to Rome in the middle of winter. Why all this trouble? The leader of the Church, the Pope, demanded it. Galileo must go on trial for... Read more
The Next Einstein
ReadOasis Step 1 By Max L. Knowles A large group of people came together. It was a special day, a chance of a lifetime. They wanted to see a great man. He wasn’t a musician, actor, or sports star. He was a scientist, and his name was Albert Einstein.... Read more