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Chapter 1: Art

/ 9

Reading 1 The Art of Photography / 11 Reading 2 Origami / 13

Reading 3 Realism in Art / 15 Reading 4 Totem Poles / 17 Reading 5 Dada / 19

Chapter 2: Money

/ 21

Reading 6 Saving Money / 23 Reading 7 Credit Cards / 25 Reading 8 Using Money / 27

Reading 9 Teaching Kids about Money / 29 Reading 10 Free Markets / 31

Chapter 3: Communication

/ 33

Reading 11 Talking to People from Other Countries / 35

Reading 12 Translating / 37

Reading 13 Speaking Situations / 39 Reading 14 Indo-European Languages / 41 Reading 15 Communication Satellites / 43

Chapter 4: Medicine

/ 45

Reading 16 Testing Medicine / 47 Reading 17 Generic Medicine / 49 Reading 18 Fighting the Flu / 51 Reading 19 Penicillin / 53

Chapter 5: Nature

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Reading 21 Hiking / 59

Reading 22 People and the Environment / 61 Reading 23 Waterfalls / 63

Reading 24 Climate Change / 65 Reading 25 The Northern Lights / 67

Chapter 6: People

/ 69

Reading 26 Mozart / 71

Reading 27 Florence Nightingale / 73 Reading 28 John McEnroe / 75 Reading 29 Maya Angelou / 77 Reading 30 Terry Fox / 79

Chapter 7: Space

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Reading 31 The Missing Meteorite / 83 Reading 32 Voyager I / 85

Reading 33 Stars /87

Reading 34 Old Stars, New Black Holes /89 Reading 35 Europa / 91

Chapter 8: Transportation

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Reading 36 Bicycles / 95

Reading 37 The History of Cars / 97 Reading 38 The Segway / 99 Reading 39 Hybrid Vehicles / 101 Reading 40 Maglev Trains / 103

Table of Contents



Why is it good to read faster?

Most learners of English read very slowly, often less than 100 words per minute.

They can easily read much faster if they read passages at the right level, and if they have some practice in reading faster. These books will help you do this.

Why is it good to read faster? When you can read faster, you will find it easier to understand. You do not spend your time spelling out words, and so you can give more time to understanding. When you read faster, you can read more. Reading can be fun. It is more fun when you can do it easily at a good speed.

There are many kinds of reading: reading for study, reading for fun, reading to learn about the world (such as reading newspapers), and reading to follow instructions.

When you become faster at one kind of reading, you will also be faster at these other kinds of reading.

You may also be able to listen a bit faster because you are used to working with English at a faster speed.

This part of your English course is different from other parts. In the other parts of your English course, you meet new words and new pieces of grammar and learn them bit by bit. This part of your English course, however, tries to have almost no new things to learn. It tries to make you use what you already know and use it as well as you possibly can. This is called “becoming fluent.” When you are fluent in a language, you can use what you know well.

The goal of this book is to help you become a fluent reader at all levels of your learning.

The passages in these books

The passages in these reading books are written to help you read faster. Most learners of English read slowly, but with a little practice, they can read as fast as many native speakers.

Introduction 5


Most learners read slowly because they meet many unknown words in their reading.

The passages in these books have been prepared so that there will be very few unknown words in them. First, the passages are written in familiar useful vocabulary.

Second, the passages are about familiar things. Third, the passages are grouped into themes so that the five passages on the same theme will become easier as you read your way through them. The earlier passages will make the later ones more familiar. Fourth, difficult vocabulary is reviewed before you read the passages.

All of these things are done so that you can read the passages quickly without meeting unknown words. The purpose of these books is to help you read faster.

Using the books

You should follow these steps when you read the books. Your teacher can help you with this.

Step 1: Do the exercises and learn the vocabulary at the beginning of each set of passages. Make sure you know these words well before you begin reading the passages.

Step 2: Before reading each passage look at the time. If you are reading in class, the teacher will tell you when to begin.

Step 3: Read the passage as quickly as you can while trying to understand the passage.

Step 4: As soon as you finish reading, write down how many minutes and seconds it took you to read the passage.

Step 5: Turn the page and answer the questions. When you answer the questions, do not look back at the passage.

Step 6: Check your answers to the questions using the answer keys in the back of the book.


Step 7: Write your speed and question score in one of the graphs at the back of the book. Every passage in the book has almost exactly the same number of words, so your reading time can tell you your reading speed.

Step 8: Look at your reading speed. You should try to read at around 250 words per minute. You may have to read many passages before you can get to this speed, but this should be your goal. When you read the next passage, try to go faster.

Some things to think about

These books are written to help you read faster. Your goal is not to be the fastest reader in the world, but you should learn to read at a normal, comfortable reading speed. For most people this is around 250 words per minute, but some read faster.

Reading faster is only good if you also understand what you read. That is why there are questions after each story. If you get an answer wrong, that is not a problem. Your main goal is to read faster. However, the questions are easy so that you can read faster and get all or most of them correct.

You check your own questions and measure your own speed. It is easy to cheat if you want to. However, if you cheat, your teacher cannot give you the help you need to read faster. If you cheat, you know that your speed and question score is not really your score. Use these books honestly and properly and you will see your reading get better.

If you like the idea of reading faster, you can help yourself by doing other easy reading. It is not possible to read faster if you are always meeting unknown words.

You can add to the learning from these books by reading other, longer easy books as quickly as you can.

Introduction 7



1 Art

Look at the picture. Circle the right word.

1. This picture was made using (oil paints / photography).

2. This is an example of (an origami / a totem pole) animal.

3. This object represents a piece of (digital / modern) art.

4. This person is a (performance / water color) artist.


Which endings can be used with each word? Check the boxes of all the correct endings.

-ance -ed -ant -er -able

1. photograph-     

2. disappear-     

3. remind-     

4. carv(e)-    

5. import-   

Draw lines to make correct sentences.

1. The first camera appears opposite because it might be in fashion again later.

2. The reflection of of triangles and the 19thcentury.

an image rectangles

3. Someone carved so I’ll replace it but on the tree trunk.

a pattern not throw it out

4. This shirt is out was invented before to the original image.

of fashion,

Put the words and phrases in the right box.

Berlin Duchamp Picasso Postmodernism Realism

Dali Surrealism Switzerland Zurich

NOTE: The following names appear in the passages in this chapter.

Cabaret Voltaire --- a café in Zurich where artists met to talk about art Society of Independent Artists --- a group of professional artists in Europe

10 Chapter 1: Art

Artistic movements






Tristan Tzara

Marcel ____________

Salvador ___________

Pablo _____________







The first small camera was invented in 1685. But that was just the camera. It took a long time for people to figure out how to

make the right kind of paper for photographs.

Modern photography as we know it really came into being in the 19thcentury, around the year 1865to be exact. In the late 1800s and early 1900s, photography really took off. The types of cameras increased greatly during that time.

Photographers also came up with new and better ways to take pictures. Photography became a form of art.

Although most people think photographs show real things, photography also changed people’s ideas about modern art. Modern art developed in the late 19th century, around the time of the invention of photographs. Modern art was different than other kinds of art because modern art paintings did not try to show “realistic”

pictures. For example, artists of modern art often produced paintings that looked different than a real picture. The art of photography was perfect for making modern art. The photographer could make the subjects of the picture look very clear while other parts of the picture did not look clear. In this way, photographers could change a picture to be less realistic.

We are now living in the time of postmodern art. Postmodern art developed in the late 1950s and has allowed for further changes in the world of art. In the case of photography, computers have changed a lot about the way that photographs are made and viewed. For example, a photographer can now take pictures using a digital camera. These pictures can be saved on a computer and changed using a computer program. In this way, the photographer can change the colors and many other things about a photograph. For example, the photographer can change all of the colors in a photograph to light or dark red. Or the photographer can make photographs darker or lighter. In this way, the photographer can create interesting effects.

Computers are also changing the way people share photographs. In the past, a photographer had to make a book in order to show his or her photographs to lots of people. Now, with the Internet, photographers can share their photographs with thousands of people quickly and easily! This means that even teenagers can create interesting photographs as a kind of art to share with the people around the world.








The Art of Photography




12 Chapter 1: Art

Circle the right answer.

1. The reading is about:

a. how to take a picture

b. how cameras have changed the art world

c. how people can create art

2. The first camera was invented:

a. in the 1600s b. in the late 1800s c. in the 1900s

3. What does the writer say about modern art?

a. Photographs show real things, so photographs are not really modern art.

b. Cameras were not useful for making modern art until computers came along.

c. Some photographers created modern art with their pictures.

4. Which of the following does the writer NOT mention about modern art?

a. The name of an artist who made modern art

b. What modern art looks like c. When it was popular

5. Which age of art are we living in now?

a. The modern age b. The postmodern age c. The photography age

6. Something that helped photographers make postmodern art was:

a. computers b. larger cameras

c. special paper for pictures

7. What does the writer give as an example of what a photographer can do with a computer program?

a. Change the colors of a photograph b. Change the people in a photograph c. Change the size of a photograph

8. The passage explains that these days:

a. most photographers need to create a book to show their pictures b. it is simple for photographers to

show their pictures on the Internet

c. even young children can take pictures using digital cameras





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