Take a look at this extremely thorough and well-reasoned response to a Wall Street Journal piece about the quality of summer reading lists: Pop Goes the Library: Summer Reading Lists
The WSJ editorial was a tired and formulaic lament about how kids just don't read the classics anymore and why don't teachers and librarians put those fondly remembered books on summer reading lists? As Liz B. points out in the blog piece, actually we do recommend classics, but we also recommend lots of other kinds of books too. Be honest with yourself - do you always read classics and great literature? Do you sometimes read for entertainment? Well, children do that too and many grow up unscathed by the experience of reading books that have little literary merit. But don't get me started - read the blog piece linked above. Then cut your kids a break and let them enjoy summer.