This study examined the effectiveness of authentic animated cartoons in teaching English to young Turkish learners. In this experimental study using pre and post-test design, a comparison is made between instruction based essentially on traditional grammar and vocabulary teaching and one that made use of authentic animated cartoons. Thirty 4th grade pupils studying in a private school took part in the study. The control group (n= 15) followed a traditional grammar-based syllabus for four weeks while the experimental group (n= 15) watched and made use of 'The Simpsons' as classroom material. Results indicate that the experimental group outperformed the control group in learning target grammar points and vocabulary items. (C) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.