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How to learn Dutch by watching videos

By Alex Suprun through Unsplash

Are you spending too much time watching TV while you should be improving your Dutch?

Well, it’s certainly possible to do both at the same time.

Learn how to discover new vocabulary and to get more familiar with the language while watching entertaining videos

When learning Dutch by watching videos, there are two ways to go about it: the intensive versus the extensive method. 

We’ve already named these methods in previous blogs for learning Dutch through songs and reading. We’ll now tell you how to apply this method when learning Dutch by watching videos, TV shows, or movies. 

For the intensive method, find any Dutch video, show, or film with Dutch subtitles.

First, go through the video line by line, pause, and make notes whenever you don’t understand something that’s being said. Then, with your notes, watch the video using only the Dutch subtitles and try to understand everything they are saying. 

Watch the video again a couple of times over a period of a few weeks and notice how you’ll understand it a little better every time. 

For the extensive method, you can use Dutch-spoken videos with English subtitles. Just focus on the audio and try to understand what they’re saying. Don’t worry if you don’t understand everything, and be careful to spend a lot of time looking up the words and their meanings. This could only be helpful  when you really don’t know what’s going on. 

Tips for Dutch TV programs

Uitzending gemist  

On this site, you can watch TV programs that recently played and of which most have Dutch subtitles. Find programs by clicking ‘zoeken’ (search). 

Here are some recommendations you can find on this website:

Klokhuis. Informative TV show, very popular amongst kids. 

Jeugdjournaal. Daily news show aimed at kids.

NOS journaal. The news for adults.

Max geheugentrainer. Games show, aimed at seniors, but suitable for language learning.

Floortje naar het einde van de wereld. Travel program, enjoyable to watch.

Kook mee met max. Cooking show aimed at seniors. Try following along!

There is so much to see, just click on ‘populaire programma’s’ and explore!

Tips for Dutch YouTube videos

There are also many entertaining Dutch Youtube channels.  

Here are some recommendations:

Klikbeet. Lots of funny and absurd sketches. A lot of their videos reference Dutch culture or other things in the media. All videos have Dutch subtitles. 

Clipphanger. Fun, short, informative, and well-illustrated videos that are both entertaining and teach you something! All videos have Dutch subtitles.

Zondag met Lubach. A late-night show with some humor but also sharp political critique. It’s a bit like the Dutch variant of the American ‘The Late Show’ with Steven Colbert. All videos are subtitled in both English and Dutch. Great ‘learning Dutch’ channel. Especially his series ‘heb je zin?’ with subtitles in both Dutch and English are great for learning. 

Veel kijkplezier!

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