As a part of an ongoing effort to develop a “standard library” for scientific and engineering parallel applications, we have developed a preliminary finite element framework. This framework allows an application scientist interested in modeling structural properties of materials, including dynamic behavior such as crack propagation, to develop codes that embody their modeling techniques without having to pay attention to the parallelization process. The resultant code modularly separates parallel implementation techniques from numerical algorithms. As the framework builds upon an object-based load balancing framework, it allows the resultant applications to automatically adapt to load imbalances resulting from the application or the environment (e.g. timeshared clusters). This paper presents results from the first version of the framework, and demonstrates results on a crack propagation application.