Happiness is… going Dutch

The Happiest Kids in
the World

Rina Mae Acosta and

Michele Hutchison

Penguin Random House SA

Review: Carolyn Frost

Why do Dutch babies seem so content and sleep so well?

Why do Dutch parents let their kids play outside on their own, or bike to school alone? Why do Dutch schools not set homework for the under-teens, and why do Dutch teenagers not rebel?

Two writer moms, both imports to Holland, have written a book explaining the phenomenon that has resulted in a UNICEF study pointing out that Dutch children came out on top as the happiest all-round children in the world.

Ranging from factors like a state supporting families during childbirth and beyond; parents not living vicariously through their children’s achievements; school systems that encourage less homework and more play and development of social skills, this well-researched book yields fascinating insights into parenting techniques across the world, and specifically in Holland. It is highly recommended, especially for first-time dads and moms.