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.
Klondike Gold Rush
About 100,000 people flocked to the Klondike in hopes of mining gold from the region.
Let’s Teach for Mastery — Not Test Scores
Sal Khan, the founder of Khan Academy, discusses the importance of mastery-based learning.
The Dancing Plague of 1518
In 1518, a French village broke out into sudden, violent dancing seemingly for no reason.
This informational text explains how teenage male elephants make the transition into adulthood.
Elizabeth Barrett Browning
The famous poem that begins, "How do I love thee? Let me count the ways."
Anger as Inspiration
Humanitarian and activist Sami Awad describes how he channels anger to create a commitment to peace.
'I Am Not An Inmate ... I Am A Man. And I Have Potential'
This 2014 NPR piece describes the experiences and thoughts of men whose identities have been shaped by their time spent in prison.
Proposed Treatment to Fix Genetic Diseases Raises Ethical Issues
Rob Stein, NPR's Morning Edition
A new genetic treatment that removes unwanted DNA from an embryo raises controversy.
Excerpt from Oliver Twist
Oliver Twist asks for more food in this excerpt from Charles Dickens’ classic.
Rebel With a Cause: Rebellion in Adolescence
Dr. Carl Pickhardt
Psychology shows us patterns of rebellion in adolescence. But does that mean your identity is pre-defined?
Learning How To Code-Switch: Humbling, But Necessary
In this informational text, Eric Deggans discusses how he communicates differently based on the situation and audience.
The Scramble for Africa
This informational text explains the origins and impact of the European and American colonization of Africa that took place during the late 19th and 20th centuries.
A Respectable Woman
A woman’s morals are tested when her husband’s friend comes to visit.
It Is Raining on the House of Anne Frank
Tourists in Amsterdam wait to explore the house of Anne Frank.
What Teachers Make
A teacher is criticized for his profession and pushes back in this powerful poem.
Why the Sky Is Far Away
The sky once fed all people, but eventually moved far away.
A family makes a shocking discovery about a baby in this story about lineage and class in antebellum Louisiana.
The Water of Life
A king employs the services of a faithful servant to complete difficult tasks for him, hoping to win the affections of a beautiful princess.
Zora Neale Hurston
A man has an affair with another man's wife and suffers the consequences.