Learn Dutch Fast, September 2015
Drawing: Nataliya Pshenichnaya

Dear ,

It is celebration time:
This September marks the 25th Anniversary of Learn Dutch Fast!

In this newsletter:

  • My personal story
  • Will hypnosis make language learning easier? (anniversary event)
  • Dutch for your (new) health care job


My personal story, interview by Elisa Crassweller

Join Sylvia Clements as she looks back on her journey from reluctant language student to award winning teacher and owner of Learn Dutch Fast.

What is your personal experience with learning another language?

It was traumatic...I went to the "Gymnasium" because I wanted to become a vet. But there you need to learn a lot of languages.

My first day of French. Upon leaving class, I said "bonjour" to the teacher and she replied, very angrily, when you leave you don't say "bonjour" you say "au revoir." So I had to stay an extra half an hour. After that I didn't speak French in class anymore....

My first English class. I grew up on a farm and we never went on vacation.
The teacher began the class saying, "So you all have a TV at home." Nope. "You've all been abroad on vacation and heard or spoken English." Nope.
"Most of you have had English in elementary school." Nope again.
"So let's begin with chapter 4."

It made me feel so behind that I didn't come up with the idea to carefully read, review, and try to understand the first three chapters.

I just couldn't do it. I knew how to learn the boring vocabulary
(most of the time offered without any context).
But the listening tests… no way I could hear a word…

Six months before the final exam, there was a lottery for a two week exchange program to England and I thought if I can do that, if I can go to England, then I can learn English there. All my friends thought it was a great idea for me to go to England. "Sylvia, we'll all put YOUR name in, so you'll have a bigger chance to go."

The teacher held up the paper with my name she just took from the bowl with all the names….and said, "No Sylvia, your English isn't good enough."

click here to read the rest of the story


Will hypnosis make language learning easier?

It is a question that has been in my mind since I started struggling with learning languages. If you are wondering the same thing, then I have the perfect Anniversary Event for you (September 28th - October 1st)!

September 28th my good friend Anton Buddy Tanesha will guide us through the world of hypnosis and relaxation (Language used = Dunglish). We will learn what works best for us. The next two days I'll teach Dutch while you can choose what kind of hypnosis you would like to try (or none at all).

An extra bonus is an optional 4th day: Tree of Life. A perfect day to get to know yourself a little better, to relax and to be creative. Michaela will tell us how. Come join us!


Dutch for your (new) health care job

Are you dreaming of a job where you take care of people who need your help? But you feel you need a higher level of Dutch first?
Check out this project I organised with my colleagues Ellen & Evelyn. It starts September 11th and there is room for only two more participants.

It ends with a walking network event on October 16th, you can also join this event without the Dutch lessons mentioned above.

Will I see you there?


Lieve groetjes,






Winner of the European Award of Teaching (2003)

Nominated for the European Award of Teaching (2014)


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