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.
Shooting an Elephant
A British officer must decide whether or not to shoot an elephant that has become aggressive.
Protest Music is as American as Apple Pie
Thomas Pool discusses the history of protest music in America.
The Hero's Journey
Jessica McBirney discusses a common structure in stories known as the Hero’s Journey.
Teri Ellen Cross Davis
A speaker describes her feelings about her natural hair over the years.
A speaker is questioned about the darkness of their skin when they inquire about leasing an apartment.
Immigrants in Our Own Land
Jimmy Santiago Baca
An immigrant dreams of a better life but encounters a disappointing reality instead.
Cool Jobs: Unearthing the Secrets of Soil
Lindsey Konkel discusses scientists who study soil and what their work can reveal.
Excerpt from The Tragedy of Julius Caesar: Act I, Scene II
In this excerpt from The Tragedy of Julius Caesar, Brutus and Cassius discuss Caesar’s abilities as a leader.
Meet The Fearless Cook Who Secretly Fed — And Funded — The Civil Rights Movement
Maria Godoy discusses Georgia Gilmore, who contributed to the Civil Rights Movement through her cooking.
A speaker describes a man’s experience after Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans.
Cesar Chavez: The Life Behind A Legacy Of Farm Labor Rights
Maureen Pao, for NPR
Maureen Pao discusses the life and accomplishments of farm labor activist Cesar Chavez.
The Reign of Terror
Jessica McBirney discusses the violent period during the French Revolution known as the Reign of Terror.
The Unspoken History Behind a Surname
Lolly Bowean discusses the history behind African American surnames.
A futurist society achieves equality at a steep cost.
Daughter of Invention
A girl who has recently moved from the Dominican Republic to America prepares a speech to present in front of her school.
When You Are Old
William Butler Yeats
In this poem, a speaker asks someone to reflect on their life and on lost love in their old age.