Children in Germany can now be seen AND heard

Shhhhh! - © recently, children in Germany were restricted in how loud they could be when playing, and being too loud could land someone in court.

For a private household, there is the ever-present problem of the local Rühezeiten, but if a group of children were playing together, then their level of noise could put them on a par with a factory building.

So building a playground or even a Kindergarten near a housing estate was a risky business, because there was always the chance that someone might start proceedings just because the children were too loud.

Of course, you could wonder who would be so annoyed by the sound of children playing, that they feel the need to go to court.

But, as they say, the law’s the law and so Kindergartens often ended up on the losing side and had to erect high sound-reflecting fences around their grounds.  The only way to avoid the problem entirely was to build new playgrounds and Kindergartens away from residential areas, but that rather defeats the object of building them in the first place.

Thankfully Germany’s politicians have seen sense and amended the law to stop this happening in future.

The law, called the Bundesemissionsschutzgesetz, is now contains a list of places that are no longer considered to cause “environmental damage”, which should be of great relief to all parents in Germany and especially to those responsible for the Kindergartens!


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About Graham

Graham Tappenden is a British ex-pat who first came to Germany as a placement student in 1993, returning in 1995 to live there permanently. He has been writing for since 2006. When not writing blog posts or freelancing for the Oberurseler Woche and other publications he works as a self-employed IT consultant solving computer problems and designing websites. In 2016 he gained German citizenship.


  1. Thank goodness for this new law! I remember when you mentioned the noise law in one of your podcasts and was disappointed….it seems to me that the German society is rather geared toward child-raising and freedom of childhood expression…at least that was my perception. By the way, I REALLY miss your podcast…no chance that will be resurrected, is there?

  2. Hi Claudia,

    which of the podcasts do you mean?  The Monday Podcast, German Words Explained or Truly German?

    There’s always a chance if there’s enough interest 🙂

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