CommonLit is a free collection of fiction and nonfiction for 5th-12th grade classrooms. Search and filter our collection by lexile, grade, theme, genre, literary device, or common core standard.
What Is a Rocket?
Rockets are important tools that allow scientists and astronauts to explore space.
Teen Brain Takes Biggest Sports Hits
Katherine Harmon discusses the effects of head injuries on the teenage brain.
The Scientific Method
Barrett Smith outlines the steps and significance of the scientific method.
The speaker reflects on their family’s roots in Vilna, a city that a vibrant Jewish community called home before the Second World War.
Excerpt from “Our America”
José Martí discusses leadership in Latin American nations.
Teenagers Who Don’t Get Enough Sleep at Higher Risk for Mental Health Problems
Tori Rodriguez discusses the impact that not getting enough sleep can have on teenagers’ mental health.
Ode on a Grecian Urn
In this poem, John Keats describes a series of images on a Grecian urn.
A speaker describes the experience of caring for someone close to her.
Propaganda: Battling for the Mind
Shelby Ostergaard discusses the purpose and history of propaganda and how it influences people.
The Selective Laziness of Human Reasoning
Tania Lombrozo for NPR
Tania Lombrozo explores why humans tend to prefer their own opinions over the opinions of others.
A speaker describes taking his nephew for a walk in the forest.
Going to School as a Refugee
Facing numerous challenges, refugee students in Dallas schools look to one another for support.
Thank You, M'am
A young boy unsuccessfully tries to steal a woman’s purse.
The Women of Hidden Figures
Jessica McBirney describes the life and accomplishments of three African American women who worked for NASA during the Space Race.
Want to Get Into College? Learn to Fail
Angel B. Pérez
A dean of admissions dispels the myth that students should showcase perfection on a college application, and explores the relationship between past failures and college success.
George W. Harkins to the American People
George W. Harkins
In an open letter to the American people, Choctaw chief George W. Harkins expresses his opinion about the Indian removals.
On How My Mother Sleeps
A speaker describes a memory of her mother sleeping.
The Science of Solitary Confinement
Solitary confinement can have a strong impact on a prisoner’s mental state.