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|edHelper's suggested reading level:||grades 4 to 6|
|Flesch-Kincaid grade level:||3.9|
The World's Favorite Cowboy
By Toni Lee Robinson
1 Will Rogers didn't look like a movie star. His ears stuck out. His nose was a bit big. His hat and his hair were always messy. But Rogers was one of the first big stars. His first movie came out September 30, 1918. In those days, movies didn't have sound. After an actor spoke, a line or two of text would pop up. The audience could read what the actor had said. In all, Rogers made 71 movies. In 1934, he was named Hollywood's most popular actor.
2 That was only one of Rogers' titles. In fact, trying to describe Will could take several pages. He started off simple, though. Will Rogers was a country kid. He was born in 1879. His parents raised longhorn cattle in Indian Territory. The area later became the state of Oklahoma.
3 A black freedman worked on Will's parents' ranch. This ranch hand taught young Will how to use a lariat rope. Will loved roping. He practiced endlessly. He learned the roping skills that every cowboy needs to know. He could "head" or "heel" cows or horses. (This is the skill of throwing a loop of rope around the head or the hind feet of the animal.) Will learned rope tricks. He also became a skilled rider. He used his skills as a cowboy on different ranches. Then he joined a Wild West show. His show name was "The Cherokee Kid." Will was part Cherokee. He was proud of this heritage. He used to say "My ancestors didn't come over on the Mayflower; they met the boat." His skill thrilled his audiences. His three-rope trick was his most famous. In this trick, he would throw three ropes at once at a running horse and rider. One rope would loop around the horse's neck. The second caught the rider. The third looped around all four of the horse's legs. Will's rope tricks won him a place on the New York stage.
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English Reading Comprehension: The World's Favorite Cowboy
Spanish Reading Comprehension: El vaquero favorito de todo el mundo
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