One of the most basic skills you will need to learn is how to count. Take a look at the Dutch numbers, and see if you notice anything different from English…
|1 000 000||een miljoen|
Did you spot the difference between Dutch numbers and English numbers? If you guessed that the second number in a double digit number is spoken first, you are correct. As a native English speaker, this has been a terrible task to remember, and no matter how far I get with complicated grammar, long complex sentences and academic level vocabulary, I always have to stop and think about the numbers. Just try to remember that the first number you hear is not the beginning of the number.
Vijfentwintig is 25.
Zevenhonderd zesenveertig is 746.
But don’t worry if you always find yourself counting, doing math, and thinking of change in your native language. For whatever reason, these are tasks that many people always return to their native language to do. As long as you can understand how much money the person at the checkout counter wants, it doesn’t matter what language you use to count your cash in your head. Nevertheless, try to count things in your head as much as possible. This should help get you acclimated to the “backwards” counting method.