The turning point, as Yusuf recounts, came in his second year in the U.S. He attributes much of his success to the cartoons he watched at home on the advice of a teacher who advised him to “do what the Americans do.” By “paying attention to the American system” as revealed, in part, through cartoons, by identifying with other “Americans,” Yusuf made a big leap in his education. His hard work as a student of English started paying off, and his English competence began “picking up” (“pretty quick, too…”), Yusuf adds in an evaluative note. By the end of his second year in the U.S., Yusuf remembers, his English was “off the hook”; by sixth grade, he continues, he had transformed himself into a successful, English-speaking student in the U.S. context,

“I used to make 4.0s….The teacher used to put my writings on the wall, like ‘Wow, look at this guy,’ you know? ‘He’s been here for a year and already writin’ something like this!’”

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