Rebecca wanted a secret shared language.
Rebecca’s stepdaughter was going abroad to study for a semester in Denmark, and while other parents might be thinking only about economy and practicalities, Rebecca also decided to learn Danish to have that shared experience with her stepdaughter!
It (ed.: Danish) has more similarities with English, which is nice since it keeps me motivated to keep practicing and get to an intermediate level.Rebecca, learning Danish at Danes Worldwide
Rebecca is in her early 50’s and is a Strategy Officer at the FXB Center for Health & Human Rights at Harvard University. She is one of Danes Worldwide’s many online Danish students around the globe who have a desire to learn the Danish language – but whose motives are a bit unique.
Rebecca’s goal is to be proficient in six languages at an intermediate level before she turns 60. She is fluent in English and Greek and has studied Korean for five years:
“I really enjoy learning Danish because it is easier than Korean! It has more similarities with English, which is nice since it keeps me motivated to keep practicing and get to an intermediate level”; she says.
As a fun twist, the plan was to surprise her stepdaughter with some Danish during a visit to Denmark, but it quickly became clear to Rebecca that it would be even more rewarding if she told her right away, because then they could practice Danish together instead of separately:
“I ended up telling my stepdaughter, and my hope is that when she gets back, we can practice keeping up our skills and also have a secret language to use at home”; she says.
Apart from using Danish as a secret language, Rebecca is hoping to visit Denmark again, but if not, it is still worth is learning Danish! New languages are a hobby and a way of understanding new cultures.
Danish is Dan’s language of love.
It is often said that French is the language of love. But in Dan’s case… it’s Danish. His wife is from Denmark, and when they applied for family reunification, basic Danish was a requirement.
Even though it’s a daunting task to learn Danish at age 60, my motivation is to be part of the family so none of them will have to speak my language in their country.Dan, participant at Beginner Danish
Dan has served his whole life in the US Military. And his wife Lisbeth, whom he married in 1988 as a newly trained frogman in the US Navy, has followed him across the Atlantic and back four times due to deployment.
Eventually, when Dan retired in 2017, the couple decided to make a final trip across the Atlantic again. This time to live in Denmark for good. But for the plan to succeed, Dan and Lisbeth had to apply for family reunification, which includes learning the language. He ended up doing this with the help of Danes Worldwide:
“I enjoyed the Beginner Danish class very much. I tried to keep my video posts light and funny and over all the class gave me the knowledge necessary to complete the A1 and A2 language requirements for family reunification,” he says.
Dan had to reach a certain level to stay in Denmark, and now he is aiming for more. He wants to integrate well into Danish society as much as possible by doing volunteer work and start in the local rowing club. But to keep improving the language is the most import part:
“Even though it’s a daunting task to learn Danish at age 60, my motivation is to be part of the family so none of them will have to speak my language in their country. The goal is to be pretty close to that by Christmas 2023,” he says.
Valentine is auditioning for Romeo and Juliet in Danish.
Imagine to be 17 and so passionate about theater that you are willing to learn a new language in order to be able to quote it at an audition for a play.
It was only after I had been studying Danish for a while that I decided I wanted to memorize a monologue in Danish.Valentine, learning Danish at Danes Worldwide
Valentine is a high school student. She is very interested in theatre and works part time as an assistant at two different kids’ theatre programs. She has no personal connection to Denmark. No Danish family. But she decided to start learning Danish because she needed a language credit to graduate, and her school only offers Spanish, which she wasn’t interested in learning. Danish, on the other hand, had a meaningful purpose:
“I picked Danish because I’m interested in the Greenlandic explorer Knud Rasmussen, and I thought it would be interesting to be able to read his books in the original language. It was only after I had been studying Danish for a while that I decided I wanted to memorize a monologue in Danish,” she says.
She originally chose a monologue from Shakespears play Hamlet, which is set in Denmark, but eventually chose Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow from Macbeth since she was more familiar with that one:
“I translated the monologue myself with an online dictionary and listened to other people recite it in Danish. I eventually used it to audition in the US for Romeo and Juliet and got cast as Benvolio,” she says.
As most of Danes Worldwide’s English speaking students, Valentine finds that the hardest part is understanding the language when it’s being spoken. Structurally and grammatically, the language is very similar to English, so forming sentences isn’t that difficult.
Now, let us know why you want to study Danish and let’s find the right program for you. We are looking forward to hearing from you.
Want til learn Danish?
We offer Danish lessons at diffent levels from the age of 10 and up.