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Workshop ‘Dijken’, Sunday December 16

Leer je Nederlands? Wil je je Nederlands oefenen? Kom dan naar de workshop over ‘dijken’ op zondag 16 december. De workshop is in het Nederlands (level A2 en hoger). De rest van de informatie op deze pagina is in het Engels.

On Sunday December 16 there will be a brand new workshop. This time our subject will be Dutch dikes. The workshop is in Dutch (from level A2 and higher). Registration is free. Find more details at the bottom of the page.

Dutch water management from early ‘terps’ to the innovative ‘zandmotor’ (sand engine)


Surviving and making a decent living in the coastal area of the Dutch Delta has never been very easy.

Rivieren en de zee

Very frequently the rivers and the sea flooded the land. At first the inhabitants build earthen mounts which they called ‘terps’. But the sea and the rivers were took large areas of lands. The coastal area had become one large lake district.

Windmolens en polders

Something had to happen. In the Middle Ages the windmills were invented and they were used to pump the water out of the lakes.

Dijken, kanalen en sloten

From the thirteenth century the Dutch reclaimed land. In order to do so they built dikes, canals and ditches. De Haarlemmer Lake  was a huge project. The airport of Schiphol used to be a large lake until it was finally reclaimed in the 19th century.

Overstromingen en rampen

Each century there were floods and disasters. The last big disaster was in 1953. After this disaster Rijkswaterstaat (Ministry of Waterways) initiated the Deltawerken which took almost fifty years to finish. The Deltawerken consists of a large system of dikes and dams.


Ideas about water management have changed over the last few decades. Building higher and stronger dikes is very expensive and not very effective in the long run. In stead of fighting against the water, the Dutch now cooperate with the forces of water. How? Look at the Sand Engine near Monster and you get an idea. Few years ago a man-made sand island of one square kilometre was created in front of the vulnerable coast. North Sea currents transport this sand along the coast and replenish the beaches and the dunes.

Ruimte voor de rivier

More space for the rivers is another new innovative approach that we will discuss in Dutch during the workshop.



Do you want to sign up for this workshop? Great! Send an email to to register for one or more places, for free. Here are all the details you need:

> Workshop about ‘Dutch dikes’, level of Dutch: A2+ and higher

> Sunday December 16 2018 from 13.00 – 15.00 hrs (doors open at 12:45 hrs)

> Central Library The Hague (Spui 68, third floor)

> Email to register


‘Spreek samen Nederlands’ is an initiative of Direct Dutch Institute and Public Libary The Hague