Akita Ropiquet in 100 words
I #Challenge myself everyday.
At twenty-five, I quit as a PhD student, after studying maths. I was bored and was more interested in language learning.
At twenty-six, I developed my own method to learn foreign languages for free.
My goal is to #challenge you to learn the language of your choice.
I now run MyNameIsRopiquet.com, a website full of resources for language learners.
I can sing in French, English, Spanish, Italian and Finnish.
I was born and raised in Normandy.
I love working out, Kid Cudi, Interstellar, singing, Real Madrid, and I watch Shark Tank & Planet of the apps.
It started as a challenge with myself. I spent two weeks in Finland in 2012. And I loved it! The people, the culture, and the language. It was so different from French or English, but I loved the way it sounded. Back in France, I decided to challenge myself. And I started learning Finnish on my own.
Well, I failed miserably. I used a popular method with a textbook. I kinda enjoyed it. I studied everyday for three months. Some days, I would go out and party, and coming back home I would sit at my desk and study my Finnish lesson of the day. I just wanted to be consistent and learn more! But it wasn’t sustainable and that much fun. I wouldn’t call it a failure though. I wouldn’t even blame the method. Thanks to this experience, I learned a lot. About language learning, about myself, about learning in general.
That’s how my language learning experience started.
For me, languages are a tool to communicate, to connect with other people, and to discover foreign cultures. You can have a lot of fun going abroad even if you don’t speak the language. But the experience is much more exciting and rewarding if you speak the local lingo (even just a little).
Maybe we’ll have wearable translators in a few years. Those earpieces that automatically translate what is being said. Maybe. And I guess that’d be useful in some situations (business, restaurants, …). But that won’t kill languages & language learning. Having this earpiece is like having a transparent wall between you and the person you’re talking to. Speaking his/her language destroys this wall and enables you to build a more meaningful connection.
I also believe that if everyone were speaking his neighbor’s lingo, then the world would be a much better place.
I challenge you to learn a foreign language.
I challenge you to “leave this world a little better that you found it.” For me, languages are one of the keys to make this world a better place.
Learning a language must be fun. You’re discovering a new culture, new people and new places. I can do it, you can do it, anyone can do it! Yes, it does take time, patience, and consistency. Sometimes even tears, blood, and mud (well..almost!). But there’s no need to use boring methods, or to spend tons of money. That’s why I created my own method and my language workouts. You have everything you need right now on the Internet, and you don’t need to spend a dime.
For me, learning a language is like getting in shape. It’s like working out. You need to do it consistently, repeat the same movements over, and over, and over, and over again. And when you think you’re done, when you think you’ve finally mastered this tricky trilled r, when you think you’ve finally memorized the weird conjugation pattern of the French verb “aller” (=to go), well guess what? You’re not even close! You’ll need to see this pattern again, and again, and again. You’ll have to trill that tongue of yours a hundred times more, a thousand times more, a million times more. You don’t get a Brazilian butt by doing a 1-minute plank once a month…
Fluency is a very broad term. I never aim at perfection. I have no interest in a perfect accent, perfect grammar and perfect sentences. I don’t even want to lose my French accent!
For me, learning a language means being able to communicate in this language. I’m only interested in being able to understand what is being said to me and to say what’s on my mind. That’s why my language workouts focus primarily on raw native audio.
I’m Akita Ropiquet, and welcome to my blog.
I’m 26. I speak four languages, and I’m currently learning Finnish.
I studied mathematics in France and Madrid. Last year I was a PhD student, and I quit after one year. I wanted to be able to travel, learn new languages and live life on my own terms.
I like to learn a new language with songs and YouTube in my target language. But there aren’t many lists of resources to help you getting immersed in the pop culture of a language. So I decided to share with you resources in different languages on YouTube. And when I say “resources” I mean native content, content consumed by people whose mother tongue is your target language.
My failed relationships with languages
I don’t consider myself a language learning expert. I’m just a guy who wants to travel. And I want to be able to connect with people all over the world.
Back in middle school, I was barely speaking English, and the only word I really knew in Spanish was hola.
I came to learn English by accident, watching tons of American movies and tv shows.
I failed to learn Finnish on my own during college. But I did my master’s degree in Madrid, and this is where I learned Spanish.
Later on this same year I failed to learn German with a popular app. Then I learned Italian one year after that.
I started learning Brazilian Portuguese a few months ago. But decided to stop after a few weeks to focus on Finnish.
All these experiences were not failures. There’s no failure in life. Just work in progress. I learned that I don’t learn well with apps, or passively. And that I don’t push myself when there’s no challenge.
Oh and I’m French by the way. That might explain why I’m kind of obsessed with food. So I might also talk about wine & cheese. But anyways, when you read my posts, imagine a French accent. It will make it more authentic!
Language I’m learning: 🇧🇷
Languages I can sing in: 🇫🇷🇺🇸🇪🇸🇮🇹
Languages I’m interested in: 🇩🇪🇸🇪🇩🇰🇳🇴🇷🇺🇷🇴🇯🇵🇫🇮
PS: If you want more of me, I wrote guest posts on the following blogs:
Holiday French – Know Your Essentials, on LanguageLearningLibrary.com created by Gary McCann
6 Easy French Recipes to Bring France to Your Home, on FrenchTogether.com created by Benjamin Houy
How to use Social Media for Instant French Immersion, on FluentIn3Months.com created by Benny Lewis