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Stay in touch. Keep up your Dutch! #1

Teachers at Direct Dutch Institute always say to students: ‘practise makes perfect’. And: ‘use it or lose it’. But how do you practise your Dutch, now that most people stay indoors? In this series of short interviews, we ask our teachers for advice (and for some personal revelations as well)! Teacher Joke Fransen is first on our list.

What is it you love about teaching Dutch?

I love my language and I love to show people that the Dutch language is not as complicated as most people may think. It is wonderful to see students having short conversations in Dutch, after just a few lessons!


Do you need superpowers to teach Dutch grammar to foreigners?

Not at all! And especially not while using the Direct Dutch method, which is based on the similarities between Dutch and English.


What is it most students don’t know about you?

At the end of the course I often tell students that I’m a DJ. And it will probably not surprise anyone that my DJ name is MaDutch.

During the corona crisis, Direct Dutch continues all courses online. Are you a digital diva, or are you a little nervous about teaching online?

I think I’m somewhere in between. I am really looking forward to starting my first online class. I’m ready for it, and so are my laptop, camera and microphone!


Social distancing = less opportunity to practise Dutch. Some tips, please!

This might actually be the right time to practise. Less people are in a hurry. There is more time left to improve skills online, and the online possibilities are plenty. Dutch family, friends, or colleagues will probably love to spend some time speaking Dutch with you, in a WhatsApp call or via Facetime.

Which Dutch books do you recommend to students of Dutch?

For the very beginners I would recommend De Ontmoeting written by Johan van Caeneghem. For the advanced I would recommend Het Achterhuis written by Anne Frank.


Which Dutch movies /series do you recommend?

The best Dutch movie ever, for me personally as a runner, is De Marathon. A movie with a perfect combination of humour and drama.


Last but not least, do you have a mantra to keep your head up during this crisis?

Sure! As a Kundalini yoga fan, I would love to share this beautiful song.