About the author
Sofie Begine is a language trainer active in the region of Brussels and Leuven and currently specialising in Flemish informal language.
Why this project?
As a Dutch language teacher working in Brussels and Leuven, I was often confronted with the difference between correct Dutch, the language we teach in classes, and the way Flemish people actually speak. The real language of everyday life, though it technically is not a "correct language".
I noticed that my trainees continued to have difficulties understanding their friends, neighbours and colleagues, even after many classes. After becoming aware of this fact, I started paying more attention to the way we speak in informal situations. And no wonder my students were having difficulties! The spoken Flemish language differs from the standard Dutch, not only in pronunciation, but also in vocabulary and grammar!
That is when I decided to develop a learning package for this wonderful and rich informal language, the results of which will be available on this website.
The goal of this website is absolutely not to replace traditional Dutch courses. Knowing correct Dutch remains as important as ever to function in our society.
Rather, this platform aimes to be a complementary approach, and dare I say a necessary one. Not knowing the informal everyday language is as big a handicap as not knowing the standard language.
If you don't know the informal language, the language barrier between you and Flemish colleagues, neighbours and friends will remain in place.
I hope this website and my books will offer you a bridge to the other side and a means to break this barrier once and for all!