In Breaking Through, by Francisco Jimenez, the protagonist, the author himself, struggles to fit in with his peers at his new school, works long hours to help support his family, learns to be responsible, learns to respect his parents, and finds out who he is and where he belongs. In the beginning of the novel, Francisco’s family crosses the border between Mexico and the United States of America and Francisco starts going to school in California. He desperately tries to fit in with the rest of the students. Jimenez says, “To make friends, I began to pay close attention to what my classmates did and talked about. During recess, the girls talked about boys, music, and dancing. The boys discussed sports, cars, and girls” (Jimenez 30). His goal to fit in is accomplished when he is elected president of the Spanish club. Francisco also learns to respect and listen to his parents, especially his dad. Even though he and dad have different views and opinions, he always takes his father’s words into consideration. He constantly thinks about how he can help his family, which is why going to college was a major choice for him, as he would not be there to support them. Francisco is very responsible and he always makes sure to get his work done. In order to improve his English, Francisco watches movies in English and reads a few pages from an English book he found in the dump. Fortunately, he has very supportive adults by his side that are able to aid and lead him in the right direction. Mr. Kinkade tells Francisco that in order to achieve his dream of becoming a teacher, he must go to college. He tells him that there a scholarships available and Mr. Kinkade helps him create a schedule with the classes he needs to attend in order to get into college. Throughout the novel, Francisco overcomes various barriers and finds his own place in the world. He realizes who he wants to be and how he can help others, just as others have helped him in the past.