CommonLit The Library
CommonLit is a free collection of fiction and nonfiction for 3rd-12th grade classrooms. Search and filter our collection by lexile, grade, theme, genre, literary device, or common core standard.
The Fall of the House of Usher
Edgar Allan Poe
In this story packed with Poe's signature brand of macabre and suspense, an unnamed narrator visits an old friend and finds a tale of horror within the decaying manor.
In this short story, the people of Earth witness the birth of a new star and the destruction that follows this phenomenon.
To My Dear and Loving Husband
A woman professes her love to her husband.
Casey at the Bat
Ernest Lawrence Thayer
In one of the most classic sports poems in history, an arrogant player approaches the base with the weight of the game on his shoulders.
To His Excellency, General Washington
An ode to the future first president, commending his achievements as general in the American Revolutionary War.
America and I
A new immigrant tells of her struggles trying to achieve the American dream.
Letter to the Treasurer of Spain
Upon arriving to the island "Juana" - or present-day Cuba - Italian explorer Christopher Columbus writes to the benefactor of his voyage about the rich landscape and curious people he encounters in this promising new territory.
Paul Revere's Ride
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
The legendary tale of Paul Revere celebrates the story of the night that sparked the American Revolution.
The War Works Hard
In this satirical poem, a speaker remarks on the impressive diligence of war and its effects, from "provid[ing] food for flies" to "invigorat[ing] the coffin makers."
The Fisherman and His Wife
The Brothers Grimm
A fisherman catches a magical flounder, who grants every wish demanded by the fisherman's wife - until it becomes too much.
Excerpts from 'Song of Myself': 1, 2, 6, 52
This epic poem celebrating American identity has been credited as "representing the core of Whitman’s poetic vision."
Fifth Grade Autobiography
Inspired by an old photo, a child revisits early memories.
Excerpt from 'On Drought Conditions'
President Franklin Delano Roosevelt
FDR addresses the “Dust Bowl” problem of the 1930s — during which severe drought and erosion conditions led to a prolonged agricultural crisis.
A woman’s Sunday alone in the park has unexpected emotional consequences.
The Wives of the Dead
Two women receive shocking visits in the night as they grieve over the deaths of their husbands.
Olaudah Equiano Recalls the Middle Passage
Former slave and abolitionist Olaudah Equiano remembers his brutal voyage across the Atlantic to Barbados as a newly captured slave.
In this poem, a speaker longingly describes a city scene from which he feels isolated.
In this sonnet, McKay, a Harlem Renaissance poet, reveals his mixed feelings about living in "the land of the free."
The Yellow Wallpaper
Charlotte Perkins Gilman
A 19th century woman struggles to maintain her sanity in the confines of a yellow room.