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.
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.
American Indian Boarding Schools Haunt Many
Charla Bear discusses the experiences of American Indians who were forced to attend boarding schools.
A Sound of Thunder
A man travels back in time to when the dinosaurs roamed the Earth.
There's a certain Slant of light
A speaker describes a slant of light on a winter day.
F.B.I. Watched Activist Groups, New Files Show
Eric Lichtblau discusses the F.B.I.’s surveillance of certain activist groups in his 2005 New York Times article.
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.