slowly…learning Dutch

Hello, beautiful Roermond!

I have QUESTIONS! I want to be able to talk to my neighbors! To begin to understand the culture, the history, the news and the smalltalk here in The Netherlands. Almost everyone here speaks English so well, it is easy for me to be lazy about learning Dutch. But it’s important to me to speak this language.

So. Before I came here, I started learning by taking a class online. The teacher is a Dutch woman teaching at the University in Edinburgh, and we students were scattered all around the world. I spoke NOT ONE WORD of Dutch then…

When I arrived in The Netherlands we were all in lockdown, so I took another on-line class for beginners, from University of Groningen. And I use the internet, of course. There’s the great website,, and YouTube channels Dutchies to Be, Learn Dutch with Bart de Pau and Learn Dutch with Niels.

Also, though, I am so glad to live in Roermond. This city is helping me SO MUCH to learn Dutch.

The library has a lot of resources for us buitenlanders who are learning Dutch. The annual library subscription is reduced for Dutch learners. When there is no lockdown I go to the weekly Taal Café, where volunteers (bless them!) speak Dutch with us. Because of the current Corona rules, Taal Café is now on Zoom!

The Service Gilde has volunteers who lead tours of the city, guide nature walks, and coach Dutch learners one-on-one. The city walks, Stadswandeling, help less integrated foreigners learn about the culture and history of the city, as well as the language. The SamenSpraak program matches volunteer Dutch speakers with buitenlanders, to meet regularly to speak Dutch together. There are a number of other services the Gilde provides, too.

And also, I have kind neighbors who patiently wait while I fumble my way through simple phrases of Nederlands. Truly this city deserves a huge thank-you from me! Zo, hartelijk bedankt! Ik ben erg dankbaar!

1 thought on “slowly…learning Dutch”

  1. I think it’s great to learn the language. Unfortunately many expats have been living here for many years and still don’t speak Dutch because they can easily get by with only speaking English and therefore gave up on trying to learn the language. After you master the Dutch language, you can try learning Limburgish, which most people in this province prefer to speak! 🙂


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