Ronit Shiro is the creator and founder of FeppyBox — a bilingual subscription box designed to immerse kids ages 3-6 in Spanish and English language learning.
FeppyBox makes it easier for parents to raise their children bilingually, in a fun way that feels more like playing than learning. With the mission to connect kids with the globe through language, in order to build a more inclusive and FEPPIER world around them, FeppyBox strives to raise the next generation of open- minded, global citizens.
Sharing the gift of bilingualism with children
FeppyBox was born out of Ronit Shiro’s passion for learning, traveling, and connecting with people. Language was the common thread that brought all these passions together.
Born in Venezuela to immigrant parents, Ronit was lucky to learn and speak more than one language. At the time she did not understand the importance of bilingualism or the opportunities it would offer. Later, as an adult and mom herself, she would come to understand that bilingualism is one of the greatest gifts she could give her children.
“In our case, being bilingual means being able to connect with grandparents and friends, but it’s also a tool that creates opportunities for the future,” said Ronit. “It connects us to other cultures. It opens doors.”
This is where the idea for FeppyBox began to take shape. Ronit began to ask: How can we provide tools to families to make language learning fun and meaningful? How can we give kids entertaining and creative ways to learn?
From there, the subscription box service began to take form and was given its name: FeppyBox, from combining the word haPPY in English and Spanish (FEliz), to embody all parents’ ultimate purpose: to see their kids happy. In 2020, FeppyBox launched and has been growing steadily since.
Raising bilingual children through immersive learning
By combining learning with play, FeppyBox makes language learning fun and easy. Each FeppyBox includes stories, music, and games designed so children can learn, laugh, and live in two languages.
“From our customers, we’re learning that you don’t have to be bilingual to raise a bilingual child, and we’re seeing that play-based learning takes some of the mystery out of bilingualism,” said Ronit. “The spark of bilingualism happens when a kid connects the content in both languages.”
With a variety of activities, children and parents are able to engage with language in different formats. Feppy Book offers an original story in both English and Spanish and includes exclusive access to its Audio Video Book, which provides unlimited fun learning and supports pronunciation. Each Audio Video Book can be watched in English or Spanish.
Next, Feppy Play offers a hands-on activity to encourage bilingual play-based learning. Feppy Music gives children a new song with bilingual lyrics and exclusive online access to Feppy Music. Feppy Music adapts versions of traditional children’s songs introducing Merengueton, Salsa/Trap Reggaeton/Vallenato, Electro Mambo and other Latin rhythms.
Finally, Feppy Parents is a unique Parent Guide to support ongoing immersive learning. Every item in FeppyBox is fully bilingual, so parents don’t need to know both languages to share
FeppyBox is a gift that allows children to connect and grow as global citizens. For bilingual families, it is also a way for family members to connect, even across great distances.
“We are happy to learn that grandparents have bought FeppyBox for their grandchildren as a way to connect with them,” Ronit shared. “One grandparent sent us a note telling us that, even though he lives far away from his grandson, they look forward to every box and sharing what’s inside.”
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Tip for entrepreneurs: “Believe in yourself and in your ideas”
Ronit’s personal philosophy as an entrepreneur is to embrace the uncomfortable and continue to move forward striving for something new and better and to seek progress over perfection.
Creating FeppyBox was a gift of love and a passion project for her, but that does not mean there were no challenges or struggles along the way. Starting out, Ronit had to wear many hats, juggling management, customer service, and delivery. Her strength through all of this was her ability to problem solve 24/7 and be comfortable with being uncomfortable.
“Everyday my team and I are uncomfortable, it means we are moving forward because we are doing something new, mastering a new process and doing something better. I truly believe in seeing the positive side of being uncomfortable. If you’re uncomfortable it means you’re discovering something new and moving your business forward,” said Ronit.
To minority women thinking of starting their own business, Ronit advises, “It is very important to believe in yourself and your ideas. We can ask for advice, but deep down we have to trust and believe in what we are creating.”
Most importantly, she reminds aspiring entrepreneurs to seek progress over perfection and keep moving forward, even when things get uncomfortable.
“Perfection can paralyze us, and as entrepreneurs it is important to advance, to move forward. It’s ok to pivot and to evolve.”