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.
Pigs is Pigs
Ellis Parker Butler
An argument over the definition of “guinea pigs” leads to unanticipated and avoidable problems.
They're Made Out of Meat
Two aliens are faced with the dilemma of whether to interact with humans.
A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings
Gabriel García Márquez
In this short story, an old man with wings crashes into a family’s yard and is exploited by the family and townspeople.
In this short story set in a gleaming technological future, a young person travels to see their first tree.
J. Patrick Lewis
The poet assumes the voice of journalist and civil rights activist Helen Zia and explains how she uses words to share her perspective with others.
To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time
This carpe diem poem encourages readers to “gather ye rosebuds while ye may.”
Was It a Dream?
Guy de Maupassant
A grieving man visits the grave of his deceased lover, where he discovers an awful truth.
The Little Red Hen
Florence White Williams
A hard-working Red Hen must balance being a mother to her chicks and planting wheat seeds, while three other lazy animals look on.
The Man of the Crowd
Edgar Allan Poe
An unnamed narrator spots a man in a crowd, and follows this mysterious man throughout the crowded streets of London.
The Masque of the Red Death
Edgar Allan Poe
Safe inside his home from a disease ravaging the country, Prince Prospero throws an extravagant party for his esteemed friends, only to receive an unexpected guest.
A boy hopes to impress the new girl at school by beating her at a game of racquetball.
A family considers what will happen if they lose their house.
In this poem, the speaker describes his life at sea and why he desires to return to it.
A Respectable Woman
A woman’s morals are tested when her husband’s friend comes to visit.
On her birthday, a young girl is embarrassed when she is forced to wear a sweater that is not hers.
Julia Alvarez discusses the multiple names she has been given over the years.
I Ask My Mother to Sing
In this poem, the narrator’s mother and grandmother sing about China.
A Good Man is Hard to Find
A family’s vacation is interrupted when they meet some dangerous people.