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.
A lawyer and a banker make a bet that takes fifteen years to settle.
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.
Lamb to the Slaughter
A woman betrayed by her husband retaliates in an extreme way.
The Declaration of America’s Immense Offense
This new Declaration of Independence isn’t so great, according to a loyal subject of Great Britain.
Jack and the Beanstalk
In this classic fairy tale, a poor young boy braves considerable danger to acquire a fortune.
The Legend of Oedipus
The legend of Oedipus is a telling myth about the perils of testing fate.
Excerpt from The Tragedy of Julius Caesar: Act III, Scenes I & II
In these excerpts, The Tragedy of Julius Caesar reaches its climax as the conspiracy to remove him from power succeeds.
The Ambitious Guest
Based on a true event - the Wiley tragedy of Crawford Notch, New Hampshire - this story follows a young traveler with big dreams, who stops by a family cottage in a snowy mountain pass.
The Open Window
An awkward and anxious man is prescribed rest for his nervous condition, but finds cause for concern on his retreat when he encounters a devious host.
A schoolmaster is involved in a misunderstanding, and frantically tries to prevent a rumor from spreading.
A spin-off of "Extracts from Adam's Diary," in this piece Twain gives us the perspective of Eve--contrastingly self-assured and full of childlike wonder.
Extracts from Adam's Diary
In this comical take on the biblical creation story, Twain writes from the perspective of Adam as he struggles to comprehend the new, perplexing world around him.
The Emperor's New Clothes
Hans Christian Andersen
A vain emperor commissions two swindlers to make him clothes and gets tricked parading naked in the streets.