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Monroe Mann – My Lifelong Journey Towards French Fluency

Dive: Linguist - French
Description: Can read, write, speak, and understand French
Level: Level 1
Level Requirements: Can read, write, speak, and understand French at a basic level
Certified On: Jun 6, 2019

Editor’s Note: On all dive certifications, we try to edit the writing as little as possible to preserve authenticity, personality, and writing style. We typically fix spelling errors, but minimally modify grammar and sentence structure (just enough to ensure readability).

Monroe Mann

Name: Monroe Mann Break Diving Level: Level 1 Number of Certified Dives: 14 From: United States In: United States

1. When and Why Did You Decide to Pursue This Dive At This Level? What was your inspiration and motivation?

This was technically the third language I studied.  I remember starting with both Latin and Spanish in 6th grade, and then nothing until 9th grade when I studied Latin again.  I can’t be certain, but I think I started French in either 9th or 10th grade. Why French? My mom always loved French and spent some time in Paris, and so I think she was probably the one who inspired me to take on French.

2. How Long Did It Take For You To Accomplish This Dive At This Level From The Day You Decided To Pursue It, And Why Did It Take That Long?

I probably got to this level after about one year.  The bad news is that I stayed at this level for a really long time, as explained below.

3. What Was The Hardest Part About Achieving This Particular Dive Level?

French is a really hard language to learn.  Why? First, the pronunciation is very difficult.  Second, many of the words sound alike but have different meanings, and the endings of some words blend into the beginnings of the next, making comprehension difficult.  Third, the way something sounds is often not the way it is logically written. These three aspects of studying French make it very difficult for a beginner, and even for someone who already speaks it quite well.  I believe it’s for this reason that it took me so long to jump up to a higher proficiency level: it’s a tough language to learn.

4. What Was The Easiest Part About Achieving This Particular Dive Level?

On the flip side, the easiest part about studying this language is that many of the words have similar roots to English, and also all of the other romance languages.  So that aspect may make vocabulary learning a bit easier.

5. What Is Your Advice For Someone Who Is Pursuing This Dive And Level?

I speak English, Chinese, Italian, and French.  French was my first true foreign language, followed by Italian, and then Chinese.  If I could start all over again, I probably would have started with Spanish or Italian first, because it’s so much easier to understand these two languages because the words are pronounced precisely as they are written.  Learning one of these languages first would have given me a lot of confidence because I probably would have been initially more successful. I remember being very discouraged during the summer of 1998, while living with a French family in France, because I was having such a hard time understanding what they were saying.  I tend to think I wouldn’t have had such a hard time of it had I been with an Italian or Spanish family instead (presuming I had been studying one of those languages just as long as I had been studying French).

6. What Are Some Of The Best Resources You Recommend to Those Pursuing This Dive At This Level, And Why Do You Recommend Them? Please Include Relevant Weblinks, If Applicable.

If you really want to learn French, this is what I recommend:

Resource 1: Break Diving's French Fluency Project - Come to our French chat rooms, and meet others studying French.

Resource 2: Busuu - This is one of the best apps for learning languages out there.

Resource 3: Lingvist - This will supercharge your vocabulary.

Resource 4: -

Resource 5: -

7. Tell Us A Story Of One Of Your Adventures While Pursuing This Dive (At This Level).

Break Diving!

Comme je suis content!  Break Diving, enfin, est née, officialement, et en ligne.  L’idée pour Break Diving a été développé à peu près il y a 18 ans.  C’est incroyable que maintenant, le concepte est disponible pour le monde.  Je suis content que vous nous avez trouvé et j’éspère que vous allez nous joindre!

8. What Evidence Did You Submit to Prove You Met the Requirements for This Dive and Level?

College Transcripts. Certified by native French speaker and Break Diver Christophe Poizat.

9. Will You Be Pursuing The Next Level For This Dive? If Yes, Why? If Not, Why Not?

My life dream has been to speak totally fluent French.  I think this is because of how much of a challenge it was for me in high school and college.  But after graduating from Franklin College in Lugano, Switzerland, I vowed that I would become totally fluent, or die trying.  So yes, my intention is to take this all the way to Linguist – French – Elite. Allons-y!

10. What is the Break Diver's Creed?

No Rules. No Excuses. No Regrets.

Certificate photo:

And having made this post, and provided adequate evidence to the dive committee, Monroe Mann is now hereby certified by Break Diving, Inc. as: Linguist - French - Level 1. Congratulations ! Thank you for being an inspiration to others!

Certificate number: 14

The author above wrote this WYSEguidance post as one of the certification requirements to become certified by Break Diving, Inc. for a dive completed. Would you also like to find greater success, happiness, and friendship, and make genuine supportive connections with others around the world pursuing your same dreams? Come join us at Break Diving and soon your story will be the next one you read about on this site!

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