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Malaysians’ English proficiency has seen an alarming dropping rate in the past few years. This research studies a successful ESL (English as a second language) learner with the purpose of looking into the case’s English learning journey over a period of 12 years, and with the hope to find out the implications (possible procedures and strategies) of nurturing a proficient English user in the non-English context in Malaysia. The qualitative research method “reflexivity” was employed. The mother of the sample did reflection in great detail and provided evidence of learning and achievements. In addition to the thorough description on the sample’s engagement with the target language before formal education, his written works done during primary education and a summative work in secondary 1 were measured and analysed with a professional web tool “Text Inspector©” in line with CEFR to examine his progression towards the mastery of English. The findings show that, first, early exposure to English greatly familiarises the sample with the use of English; second, rich family literacy plays a key role in a child’s L2 acquisition; third, “imitation” can be an excellent strategy for ESL young learners.
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