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.
There's a certain Slant of light
A speaker describes a slant of light on a winter day.
Excerpt from My Mother’s Voice: The Proclamation
A young girl and her father see a notice declaring that Armenians must leave their home.
Barack Obama’s Nobel Lecture
Barack Obama accepts the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize.
U.S. Preparing Charges Against Leaker of Data
Michael S. Schmidt, Eric Schmitt, and Keith Bradsher
This The New York Times article discusses Edward Snowden’s leak of secret government information.
A narrator describes their mother’s life and past career as a trapeze performer.
Petition from the Pennsylvania Society for the Abolition of Slavery
In this historical text, Benjamin Franklin issues a plea to the United States government.
The Three Sisters, Avenged: A Dominican Drama
Larry Rohter discusses the murder of the Mirabal sisters and how it impacted people of the Dominican Republic.
Rasputin: Mysteries of a Monk's Life and Death
This text tackles a topic that has fascinated the world for over a century — the life and death of Grigori Rasputin.
The St. Petersburg Workmen's Petition to the Tsar, January 22, 1905
George Gapon describes life for workmen to the Tsar of Russia in 1905.
The Spark That Brought Down Trujillo
The Dominican Republic was shocked by the assassination of three sisters during Rafael Trujillo’s regime.
After 40 Years, The Complete Pentagon Papers
Michael Cooper and Sam Roberts
In this 2011 The New York Times article, Michael Cooper and Sam Roberts discuss the declassification of documents that were leaked 40 years ago to the press.
The Gospel of Doubt
Casey Gerald discusses how moments of disappointment have helped him learn how to embrace doubt.
Can Television Be Considered Literature and Taught in English Classes?
Shelby Ostergaard discusses the potential benefits and disadvantages of using television for teaching.
A Thief Dines Out, Hoping Later to Eat In
This New York Times article reports on a man who commits crimes, hoping to be sent to jail.
What Is Dark Matter?
The invisible matter called “dark matter” continues to be one of the mysteries of the universe.
Barrett Smith discusses the life, career, and persisting mystery of the famous pilot, Amelia Earhart.
Orpheus and Eurydice
Ovid, translated by Brookes More
This classic myth tells the story of Orpheus’s trip to the underworld in an attempt to retrieve his deceased wife, Eurydice.
Excerpt from The Harvest Gypsies
John Steinbeck discusses the role of migrant workers in California’s agriculture industry.