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New integration system January 2022

A new integration system will be introduced on the first of January 2022. Every newcomer will then have to take the civic integration exam at the B1 level. Until now, this level has been A2.
In the new civic integration system, local autorithies (gemeenten) will ensure that newcomers learn the Dutch language and start working as soon as possible. After all, participating is the best way to successful integration. Customisation and speed are central to this.

Highly skilled migrants (kennismigranten and persons who fall under the scope of family reunification (gezinshereniging) must take care of the correct way of integration themselves.

Newcomers who become obliged to integrate before January 2022 will continue to fall under the old system.

source: central government (rijksoverheid)


I have been working with Shiko for the past few months. He wanted to improve his Dutch because he works for a company with many Dutch speaking colleagues. Shiko noticed that his colleagues did speak English with him. But that they spoke Dutch among themselves and then he couldn’t follow the conversation. Shiko’s goal was to learn the language as soon as possible. In this way he wanted to feel at home in his new workplace quick. We met for 10 weeks twice a week via Skype. Last week I got a message from him and he told me that he got a lot of complements from people about his improvement. This made him feel more comfortable to talk more not just in a work environment but even more in social interacting. He became more confident to talk and engage in conversations and understand more of the conversations around him. Messages like these make me enormously proud of my students and give me a lot of positive energy! There is room again for new students who want to have positive experiences in learning the Dutch language.


State Exam

The past few months I was allowed to guide Ibra to improve his Dutch. This was through a project of the province of Friesland  Ibra has been living in the Netherlands for 19 years and already speaks and understands a lot of the language. Ibra’s goal is to prepare for the state exam NT2 part I. By doing so, he wants to increase his chances of finding a new job.  Ibra is the first student I guide to the state examination. I love this new challenge! Last week we finished the last lesson. And Ibra has registered for the 4 exams. At the beginning of November the first exam is scheduled. The state exam consists of the parts writing, reading, listening and speaking. By passing this exam, you show that you can learn and/or work at MBO level. In the coming weeks Ibra will prepare for the exam at home and I will be present in the background if there are any questions. I am confident that he is ready for it and that he will achieve a great result!

Read Ibra’s story here. https://www.pastiel.nl/kandidaten/succesverhalen/ibra-fall/


Introductory talk

I had a nice introductory talk with Chris and Tina Yesterday .
Chris and Tina are married, have been living in the Netherlands for three years and are from South – Africa. They moved to the Netherlands because Chris was offered a job here. Tina has had a job since January. They must have passed their civic integration exam In 2 years.

The advantage of the South-African language is that it has similar words to the Dutch language. The disadvantage is that the syntax and grammar are very different. Tina and Chris understand Dutch well, but have difficulty speaking. Both need this at work and the employers advised to improve their Dutch. This is the reason for them to take Dutch lessons. In 20 lessons we will work towards the A2 level, so that the civic integration exam level will be reached. The plan is to continue working on the B1 level afterwards, so that they can also manage well in Dutch at work. We are going to work together for one hour a week via Teams. I am very much looking forward to guiding Chris and Tina in their learning process and helping them achieve their goals.



Dutch a difficult language?

Many people have difficulty speaking the Dutch language. How about you?

To make it easier, it may help to concentrate on reading and listening Dutch first. Passive mastery of the language can help you to actively use the language later on. You work on expanding your vocabulary at your own speed first. In this blog I will give you some tips on how to read and listen more Dutch. Try a number of ways and find out what suits you best. Make sure you have fun, then you’ll learn faster!

-Pick a magazine that matches your interest. Background knowledge plays an important role in understanding what you read.
-Read a comic book and the images will help you understand the text better.
-Read a book that children read when they start reading. Begin at level Start or M3 and find out which level is right for you.
-An audiobook can also be nice. You will hear how the words are pronounced. At Storytel and the LuisterBieb you can find audiobooks.
 -Listen to Dutch radio and television. On television, the images will help you to understand the words better.
-Go to the park, the cafe and listen to people’s conversations. Try to find out what they are talking about. You will get used to the speed of speech, the spoken language and the topics of conversation. You focus only on listening skills. You don’t have to answer.
-Listen to a podcast on a topic that interests you.


This week I started to work with a new client, Marc.

Marc is from Manchester and will be working as a process engineer at a company in the north of the Netherlands for 2 years. Being an expat is not something he is unfamiliar with he is looking forward to working in the Netherlands. Marc’s experience is that when you’re new somewhere, it’s best to immerse yourself in the language, the culture, the social life and that’s what he’s planning to do. Together we have made a plan to master the basics of the Dutch language as soon as possible with a focus on social interaction. Marc’s goal is to be able to have a conversation with people around him as soon as possible.

Do you recognize Marc’s need and do you want to feel at home in your new environment? Then contact me. Together we will make a plan that fits your wishes and I will guide you through the entire learning process. Looking forward to hear from you!


This morning I talked to one of my clients, Mara. She has been taking lessons with me for a number of weeks now. Her problem, she said herself, was the pronunciation of the Dutch words.

Because she was ashamed of her pronunciation, she didn’t dare to speak Dutch. She found this very difficult, because it meant she had little contact with the people around her.

Together we started practicing with the pronunciation of the ui, the ee, the rrrr, the g. And we had a lot of conversations. In this way Mara feels more and more familiar with the sounds and the language. This morning she proudly told me that she had spoken with her Dutch neighbour this weekend and that the neighbour had given her a compliment on how well she already spoke Dutch. So nice to hear!

Do you also want to practice with your Dutch pronunciation? Then follow my free Talk Dutch2 30-day challenge. You will get a new tip or exercise to improve your speaking skills every day.
Follow the challenge on Facebook: Talk Dutch 2 via Instagram: elizabeth-bergsma or via the website https://www.talkdutch2.nl/go/30-day-challenge/
Veel plezier!


“I can’t follow the conversation between Dutch colleagues!”

Do you recognize this?

You have a nice job in the Netherlands. With the English language, you can manage perfectly well on the work floor. You have already taken a Dutch course and at the supermarket and on the terrace you know what to say. But during the breaks your Dutch colleagues talk to each other and you can’t follow the conversation. It goes so fast and in their enthusiasm the sentences sound like one long word.

After a few minutes you give up to find out what they’re talking about. You get the impression that you can never talk to them at this level. As a result, you have the feeling that you do not belong and that you would rather be somewhere else.

Let me help you. In the past months I have guided several people in developing their speaking skills with the result that after 3 months they feel confident enough to participate in conversations between Dutch colleagues.

Through the link below you can sign up for a free get to know each other call to the value of €37
I look forward to talk to you!
click the link


One of our basic needs is to feel at home somewhere. A place where you feel safe and welcome, where you are seen by your surroundings. Where you feel you belong and get the chance to be part of a whole. I think the world will look a bit better when this is provided for, because when you feel at home, you can bring out the best in yourself.

How do you make sure that you feel at home in a totally new environment with a different language, culture, traditions and other customs?

For this I offer a welcome pack of 12 meetings. During these 3 months different parts will be discussed. Get to know the language, the culture and the environment. There is room to discuss what you are up against, to share experiences and to meet like-minded people.

Is the Netherlands not yet ‘your’ country, but would you like to feel at home here? Please contact me and I will help you to make you feel at home.


Yesterday I spoke to Lisa, my new client. She told me that she really wants to learn to speak Dutch, because then she can talk to her Dutch in-laws.

At the moment she is not able to follow the conversations that are being held at parties. She says: “I sometimes hear a word I recognize, but everyone talks so fast. I don’t understand what they’re talking about.” This frustrates her enormously. She wants to participate in the conversation and feel like she belongs. Now she feels like an outsider. “And you know what I find so bad,” she said. “They talk English to me, they adapt to me. That’s very sweet, but I never learn Dutch that way!”

This is why she has been looking for a way to learn language. With the apps’ on the Internet, she missed the explanation, the deepening. In group lessons she missed the connection with her wishes and level. Soon she came to me, Talk Dutch 2, because I offer a customized program. Adapted to the wishes and goals of the client.

Lisa is looking for someone to practice speaking with and who explains why certain things are as they are. We have agreed that we will work together on these goals for 3 months, so that during her birthday in July she can have a nice chat with her visitor in Dutch.

I am very much looking forward to guiding her on this and am sure that she will succeed!

Do you recognize Lisa’s problem and do you want to work on your speaking skills? Feel free to contact me for a free and free introductory meeting to the value of €37.


Exam stress recognizable?

Three months ago I spoke to Eva. She had signed up for the integration exam and felt a tremendous tension. Was she ready for it? What did she need to know and be able to do? Are the new exams much more difficult? She didn’t know where to start.

Together we went to work to find out what her level was and from there we started practicing with the parts she had trouble with. She got the overview again and her self-confidence grew. She had the feeling that she was ready for it.

Last week she called me enthusiastically to tell me that she passed the integration exam! The exams were tough, she said, but thanks to my lessons she was well prepared and knew what to do.

I am very proud of her and very grateful that I was able to help her.

Do you recognize the exam stress and would you like to get rid of it? Please feel free to contact me. Then together we will see how I can help you to relax and be well prepared to take your civic integration exams, and pass them!


Do you recognize this?

A few months ago I met Jack. He has been living in the Netherlands for 7 months.

He told me that he had trouble making contact with the Dutch people around him. He wanted to be able to have a chat with the people in his gym so badly. But he had a lot of trouble making contact and following the conversations in Dutch. We started practicing conversations, asking questions and listening together.

Now, after three months, he proudly tells me that he dares to start conversations with fellow athletes in the dressing room and that he receives compliments on his speaking skills. He has the feeling that he belongs and that his circle of acquaintances is getting bigger and bigger.

Is this what you are looking for? Contact me for a free introductory meeting to the value of €37. Then we can discuss how I can help you with your wishes.


De start

Ontzettend leuk dat je geïnteresseerd bent in wat ik doe.
Sinds 21 januari ben ik gestart met mijn bedrijf Talk Dutch 2 en heb ik enorm veel zin om mensen te begeleiden bij het leren van de Nederlandse taal. Ik richt mij op mensen die in Nederland komen wonen, omdat zij hier werk gevonden hebben, of omdat hun partner hier woont. Ik vind het belangrijk dat iemand zich thuis voelt en door de taal te spreken en de gewoonten te kennen bereik je dit veel sneller. Door middel van 1 op 1 lessen zorg ik ervoor dat het spreken, luisteren en begrijpen van het Nederlands met sprongen vooruit gaat.
Wanneer je iemand kent die je dit enorm gunt, laat het mij weten. Zo kunnen we er samen voor zorgen dat iedereen de kans krijgt om mee te praten en dus om mee te doen.