Vocabulary Lists

Non-Fiction

CollectionPicture ThisEssential Works of Graphic Nonfiction
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CollectionGet a Life!Inspiring Biographies of Extraordinary People
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CollectionCompelling Coming-of-Age-Memoirs
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  1. 1491New Revelations of the Americas Before ColumbusCharles C. Mann
    This nonfiction book presents research about the indigenous peoples of the Western Hemisphere before the arrival of...
  2. Disability Visibility17 First-Person Stories for Today (Adapted for Young Readers)Alice Wong
    Published ahead of the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, this collection of 17 essays presents...
  3. Ambushed!The Assassination Plot Against President GarfieldGail Jarrow
    In this nonfiction book, Gail Jarrow chronicles the life of James Garfield, detailing Garfield's early life, his rise to...
  4. The Woman All Spies FearCode Breaker Elizebeth Smith Friedman and Her Hidden LifeAmy Butler Greenfield
    In this biography, Amy Butler Greenfield tells the story of Elizebeth Smith Friedman, a Shakespeare enthusiast who...
  5. Fannie Never FlinchedOne Woman’s Courage in the Struggle for American Labor Union RightsMary Cronk Farrell
    This nonfiction book chronicles the life Fannie Sellins, a garment worker and labor organizer who was tragically...
  6. This Promise of ChangeOne Girl’s Story in the Fight for School EqualityJo Ann Allen Boyce and Debbie Levy
    In this autobiographical work, Jo Ann Allen Boyce recounts her experience of being one of the first Black children to...
  7. Breaking ThroughFrancisco Jiménez
    In this memoir, Francisco Jiménez details his family's experiences as Mexican immigrants in the United states during the...
  8. Chasing Lincoln's KillerJames L. Swanson
    Using trial manuscripts, archival materials, and interviews following President Abraham Lincoln's assassination, Swanson...
  9. A Night to RememberWalter Lord
    In this non-fiction book, Walter Lord provides a detailed account of the Titanic's fatal collision with an iceberg and...
  10. How the Other Half LivesStudies Among the Tenements of New YorkJacob Riis
    This pioneering work of photojournalism documents the gulf between life in the rich neighborhoods and poor slums of New...
  11. Martin Luther King Jr. DayA Collection in Honor of the Civil Rights Activist
    Martin Luther King Jr. was one of the greatest orators of all time. Learn the powerful words he used to galvanize the...
  12. Facing the LionGrowing Up Maasai on the African SavannaJoseph Lekuton and Herman Viola
    In this memoir, Jospeh Lemosolai Lekuton recounts his experiences of growing up as a member of the Maasai tribe in Kenya...

Non-Fiction Vocabulary Lists:

"The Origin of Species by Natural Selection" by Charles Darwin: Essential Words

Charles Darwin expounded his theories on evolution in "The Origin of Species by Natural Selection." Learn the essential terms from his enduring work, originally published in 1859.
13 Words

"Shooting an Elephant" by George Orwell

George Orwell reflects on imperialism as he recounts an incident that occurred when he was a police officer in Burma. Here are links to our lists for other works by George Orwell: 1984, Animal Farm, Politics and the English Language
30 Words

"Mother Tongue" by Amy Tan

In this essay, novelist Amy traces her development as a writer by reflecting on the ways she and her mother use English differently. Here are links to our lists for The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan.
20 Words

"Nature" by Ralph Waldo Emerson

This 19th-century transcendentalist essay argues that spending time in nature helps people resist conformity and become their truest selves. Read the full text here. Here are links to our lists for other works by Ralph Waldo Emerson: Self-Reliance, The Young American
30 Words

"Drowned City: Hurricane Katrina & New Orleans" by Don Brown

This acclaimed nonfiction book tells the story of Hurricane Katrina in graphic form. Here is a link to our list for Unwanted by Don Brown.
40 Words

"Politics and the English Language" by George Orwell

In this essay, George Orwell explores the ways language can be used to conceal truth and encourage conformity of thought. Here are links to our lists for other works by George Orwell: Animal Farm, 1984, "Shooting an Elephant"
40 Words

"We Are the Ship: The Story of Negro League Baseball" by Kadir Nelson

This engaging history of Negro League Baseball details the obstacles and prejudices African-American baseball players faced in the 1920s, 30s, and 40s.
40 Words

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