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 Open Boat
A group of four men struggle to survive in a small dinghy.
An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge
A Confederate sympathizer is hanged by Union soldiers.
To Build A Fire
A man ignores warnings and slowly freezes to death in the wilderness.
The Cask of Amontillado
Edgar Allan Poe
This is a classic and suspenseful tale of revenge told from the perspective of the murderer.
A young boy's obsession with the girl next door leads him on a journey that ends in a harsh realization.
Story of An Hour
This is a classic short story from the early feminist writer, Kate Chopin, in which a woman is overcome by the death of her husband.
Excerpt from The Jungle
In this disturbing piece of political fiction, muckraker Upton Sinclair describes how the meatpacking industry benefits from its shockingly unsanitary practices.
Making a Fist
Naomi Shihab Nye
A child has a realization about her own mortality.
Address to the Commonwealth Club of California
Chavez describes the terrible conditions for Mexican farm workers, and calls for change.
A Chinese-American girl feels embarrassed by her family during dinner.
The Ecchoing Green
In this famous poem, Blake laments the fleeting nature of youth.
America the Beautiful
Katharine Lee Bates
This famous American patriotic song captures the vision of America a century ago.
Excerpt from Trail of Tears Diary
Jobe Alexander & Mary Hill
Interviews with decendents of Native Americans who were on the Trail of Tears
The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass: Excerpts from Chapters 1 & 7
While he was enslaved, Frederick Douglass taught himself to read and write.
The Guilty Party
The tragedy of Liz, a girl overcome with jealousy and driven to violence.
Ovid, translated by Anthony S. Kline
Pygmalion is a scupltor who falls in love with a woman he carved from stone.
The Road Not Taken
A man reflects on being at a crossroads. How has his decision shaped his identity and life?
In this symbolism-filled story, a young girl named Babette must wait patiently for the figs to ripen.
My Lost Youth
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
A speaker remembers the vivid longings and wild emotions of his boyhood.