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Break Diver
Monroe Mann
  • DIVER: Monroe Mann
  • CATEGORY – Linguist
  • DIVE: French
  • LEVEL: 1
  • REQUIREMENTS: Level 1 (Can read, write, speak, and listen at a very basic level)

When and why did you decide to start studying this language?

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.

How long did it take for you to reach this level of proficiency from the day you decided to pursue it?

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.

What do you think is the hardest & easiest part about studying this language?

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. 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.

What is your advice for someone who is pursuing this dive?

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).

How did you prove you met the requirements for this level?

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

Please share some original writing in this language, with perfect spelling and grammar (Title, plus one paragraph).

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!

Will you be pursuing the next level?  If so, what is the next level, and what is your plan?  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!

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 Monroe!  Thank you for being an inspiration to others!

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 and soon your story will be the next one you read about on this site!

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