Now looking back at it two months later, my “younger” self seems to be quite naive or maybe even a little bit dumb.
Moving abroad is one of the most challenging experiences that you could ever face. I knew well in advance that I was moving to the Netherlands...
It is 8 o’clock on a Saturday morning and your beloved alarm clock is waking you up. You immediately jump out of the bed, you sit down and spend the next 3 hours doing your Dutch homework with a razor sharp state of mind!
The 16th of June 2017 was an important date for me, not just because I had a plane to catch to Amsterdam from Kuala Lumpur, but it is also the date when I moved to the Netherlands for good.
So you’ve travelled the world. You slept in a hammock in the Amazonian forest and survived a night on your own in Bangkok. You swam with sharks, jumped from a plane, and now you feel like you are prepared for anything.
Hello! My name is Paulina, I come from Mexico City and this is my survival guide for newcomers to The Netherlands.
I finished my undergraduate studies in Australia in 2011 knowing full well that Journalism was not my true passion, so I decided to take some time to figure out what I really wanted to do.
As an expat, there will be many times when you will reflect on how important Dutch is to you. Let’s face the facts: you potentially (probably) work in an international company where the main language spoken is English.
While I am aware of the struggles many expats face in finding a job in the Netherlands, I have been quite fortunate in that I am a self-employed person.
Besides being a wonderful sport, biking is an activity that boasts countless advantages. Not only does cycling improve our overall health, it also has a huge positive impact on our social life.
The Netherlands is a country full of international companies which are constantly searching for new employees. It’s a country where you will find an enormous mixture of languages, customs and possibilities.
I started learning Dutch for my husband and his family. I tried to resist but after three family parties where I was totally excluded and lost I decided I needed to learn this language for them.
So you’ve come to the Netherlands, settled in ), even managed to pronounce Scheveningen and now you are ready for the next step: finding a job!
Dutch people are famous for being very practical about things. I find it especially amazing how practical they are about work.
I am a dreamer. Ever since I was in college, one of my biggest dreams was to work abroad, where I could travel and experience the world and its cultures from a different perspective.
Learning another person’s language is very interesting because by learning their language you’re also learning about their culture, their society and their life.
When you have a lot to say, it’s difficult to know how to start. I hope I can express myself properly. I’m a Spanish girl working as an au pair.
Having lived abroad before, in a country where I really needed to learn the language, moving to the Netherlands was ideal.
I’m not sure if a language exchange will work for you as it worked for me, but I would nonetheless recommend you give it a shot.
Here in The Hague the cold days are well and truly behind us, which means summer is right around the corner.
My experience with Kickstart has been highly beneficial in both developing language skills and improving my knowledge of the Dutch culture. Josien's support is always spot on and very intuitive in relation to personal circumstances. She spends a lot more than the official time allocated to really get to know her clients and her approach is customised accordingly. She was recommended to me by other Shell colleagues who expressed the same sentiment and I was fortunate enough to benefit from this during the time I spent with her.
Vennasa van de Ven, Migration Manager working at Shell
Entering the Kickstart school premises alone gives you a push of energy and the commitment this will help to create is hardly unmatched in any other language school. The methodology and the approach used in the lessons also helps smoothly unlock the secrets of everyday Dutch. Kickstart School has helped me get in touch with the 'undutchable' culture of the Netherlands and its people. The individual language training I could experience at Kickstart School has been one of the best educational experiences I could have in Europe.
Alessandro d’Addario, European Law Enforcement
I really enjoyed my English lessons with the Kickstart School. The teacher was professional and really knew the subject. The way they teach is also great! The classes are presented in a clear and professional manner and the online exercises completed at home are very helpful. The teacher always provided useful feedback. It's a great experience to join a Kickstart course with such a friendly atmosphere of students and teachers.
Beatriz Pedroche, Spain
Kickstart has been the ideal place for me to learn. The teachers are very helpful and friendly and have always gone the "extra mile" to help me learn in a positive way. Their teaching is practical with elements that can immediately be applied to everyday living situations. Included in the lessons are cultural aspects of living in the Netherlands that make learning Dutch dynamic and fun; you learn the language and about the place and the people! The teachers took an active interest in my progress and provided valuable customized sessions that maintained my strengths and developed my weaknesses; all in a patient, fun and friendly style.
Graeme Ting, dentist from New Zealand
My first contact with Kickstart School was after 1 month of living in The Netherlands, when I started to study Dutch. At the time I didn’t have any knowledge of the language, but with their courses organized by levels I developed important language skills and learned about the Dutch culture. They all do a great job at Kickstart because their motto it’s not just a motto – they are really pleased to teach you. You learn a language in a friendly atmosphere, make new friends from all over the world, and all in a cosy building right in the heart of The Hague.
Anca Boros, mathematics and physics teacher from Romania
During my time with Kickstart I have learned a lot and gained confidence. I was always challenged by the interesting assignments, but never too much. I have really enjoyed the classes!
Sabine de Bruijn, Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment of the Kingdom of the Netherlands
An Englishman in Den Haag In 2006, my work brought my family and me to The Netherlands for 3 months….now nearly 12 years later, we’re still here…and still love it. So much so that I’m now considering taking the integration exam and Dutch nationality. First encounters I vividly remember the week we moved into […]
From January 2018, Kickstart will offer Intensive English Courses to help people improve their language skills in a short period of time. These Intensive English Courses are offered at two levels: Pre-Intermediate and Intermediate. The 87.5 hours of tuition for each course is divided into 25 lessons of 3.5 hours, spread across five weeks from Monday to Friday...