ACHTUNG BABY in the News



On Wednesday, January 3, I am scheduled to be on the Today Show to talk about how Germans raise self-reliant kids! Catch me live around 8:30 a.m. EST.

Also on January 3, I will sit down with Salon Talks live at 4:00 EST.

Both should be posted on the internet after, and I will post the links on the “News” page here.


USA Today called ACHTUNG BABY one of the top 5 new books you don’t want to miss this week!


As more coverage comes in, I will post links on this page.  Please check back!


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“Let the Children Fight” in The Wall Street Journal

WSJ illus

Parenting the German Way: Let the Children Fight

by Sara Zaske

The chaos of German kindergartens is sometimes hard for Americans to understand.

When I lived in Berlin for nearly seven years, I was surprised at first to find that kindergartens and child-care centers (called “kitas”) were all about play, all the time. No reading, no math work sheets . . .

Read more on The Wall Street Journal website. The article will be in the 12/30/17 print edition.

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Catch me Live! ACHTUNG BABY events


In January, I will be appearing at several events to talk about ACHTUNG BABY. If you live nearby, please come out and support these fantastic venues. I will talk about how Germans raise self-reliant kids, and we can discuss how we can do it right here in the good ol’ US of A.  



January 4, 7:00 p.m.       
Politics & Prose 70 District Square SW



January 17, 7:00 p.m.
Bookpeople of Moscow,  521 S. Main




January 19, 6:00 p.m., Book Passage-by-the-Bay
100 Bay St, Sausalito, CA 94965


January 20, 2 p.m. Napa Bookmine / Napa County Library 
580 Coombs St.,  Napa, CA



January 22, 7:30 p.m. Town Hall Seattle / Westside School
10404 34th Ave SW, Seattle, WA 98106

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ACHTUNG BABYs are Coming Soon!



I am thrilled to receive my copies of the Achtung Baby hardcover! These babies can stand all on their own.

They will be released to the wider world on January 2, but you can pre-order. For more info and ordering links, click on my Achtung Baby web page or visit

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A cover for ACHTUNG BABY

My book about German parenting is coming out in January 2, 2018, but this baby already has an awesome cover. It’s big, it’s bright, it’s yellow! And watch out for those kids!Achtung Baby_cover2

Read more about ACHTUNG BABY on this site,  and see the review in Publisher’s Weekly and on Kirkus Reviews.

To pre-order, visit one of these great booksellers:

Apple / Itunes 

Barnes and Noble

Books a Million

Indie Bound (community of independent local bookstores)

Powell’s Books

In Canada:





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Toy-Free Kindergarten project

At some German kindergartens, the teachers take away all the kids’ toys for as long as three months–not to be cruel, but to help the children build resilience against future addiction, all without mentioning drugs at all. Read more about how it works on The


The Toy-Free Kindergarten

The program is based on the idea that habit-forming behaviors start in childhood.

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Teaching Children to Play with Fire

On a recent article in the New York Times , I highlighted a German fire safety training program that aims to keep kids safe by teaching them how to make fire–not to stay away from it. Check it out here


Kain Karawahn



Here’s a bit of Kain Karawahn’s fire training for kindergartners in action: (in German) The fire lesson really gets going about 1:35 in…


See more video at Karawahn’s youtube channel. And more images at the website  Mitfeuerspielen (that’s ‘playing with fire’ in German)

For more on the long human history with fire, read Professor Daniel Fessler’s paper: Burning Desire: Steps toward an Evolutionary Psychology of Fire Learning (PDF)

What do you think?

Does the American fire-prohibition approach of “learn not to burn” work to keep kids safe? Or should we try the German fire training method and teach kids how to make fire safely? 




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