Category Archives: Germany

THE WAVE: recommended reading for raising free kids

Nearly all German teenagers read this book about how easy authoritarianism can take hold. Americans might want to read it too — because it happened here. The book is based on an experiment at a high school in Palo Alto, … Continue reading

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Happy New Year! The ACHTUNG BABY paperback is out today!

  * The first New Year’s Eve in Berlin, I thought the Germans were crazy. Everyone was shooting off fireworks. Not just tourists but shopkeepers and retirees, whole families with little kids setting off some pretty serious explosives for the … Continue reading

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Play Everywhere

We stumbled upon some interesting places to play on our recent trip to Berlin and Copenhagen. Play everywhere is a good value — these two cities don’t just limit play to little parks. The German embassy in Copenhagen had these … Continue reading

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Children’s right to be with their parents

I write a lot about children’s rights. My book, Achtung Baby, is an attempt to convince American parents that kids have a right to play, to walk places on their own and to follow their own interests. Children’s right to … Continue reading

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More evidence that kids are capable

Another great video from German fire educator Kain Karawahn that might shock American parents: pre-school kids making bonfires. What I love about this video is that the kids are not only lighting fires — they are cutting wood, preparing food, … Continue reading

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Reevaluating Our Prohibition of Fire

“Don’t play with fire!” is such a common warning in the U.S. we take for granted that it is true. We believe that the best way to deal with kids’ fascination with fire is to prohibit it entirely. But this … Continue reading

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Conquering a Dragon in Psychology Today

My first post for Psychology Today is about bringing some reasonable risk and more creativity to American playgrounds — so our children have the chance to learn how to manage risk and face their fears. German kids enjoy playing on structures … Continue reading

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