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by Eric Carle
Summer reading assignments and reading quizzes and book reports don’t teach our students how to be readers. They teach them that reading is a school-centered activity. That it is a chore. That they aren’t good at it if they can’t remember insignificant plot points. These assignments set students up to cheat, or to fail, and always to regard reading as a drag.
The market for children’s books is probably more resistant to cultural churn than just about any other slice of the consumer economy; it’s a closed circuit that reproduces itself one generation after another.