Author: Dan Santat

Plot Summary: This magical story begins on an island far away where an imaginary friend is born. He patiently waits his turn to be chosen by a real child, but when he is overlooked time and again, he sets off on an incredible journey to the bustling city, where he finally meets his perfect match and-at long last-is given his special name: Beekle.

Posted In: Metaphysics

Discussion Questions:

Is an imaginary friend real?
What is good about an imaginary friend?
Are imaginary friends better than real world friends?
What is the difference between a real friend and an imaginary friend?
Can a real person be an imaginary friend (i.e., could someone who is real but who you don’t actually know be your imaginary friend)?
Do imaginary friends do whatever we want them to do or do they have minds of their own?
Can adults have imaginary friends or just children?
Beekle travels to the real world. If he wasn’t in the real world to begin with, where was he? Do imaginary places really exist?
Is the interaction between Beekle and Alice real or imagined?

Suggested Activity (recommended for grades K-3):

Read the story
While the kids are all together on the carpet, ask them to think about what their imaginary friend would be like.
Do a quick turn and talk so the kids can share their ideas
Send the kids back to their desks to draw an imaginary friend and think about
What their imaginary friend would look like (that’s the drawing part)
What their imaginary friend is like (what characteristics, traits, or ways of being)
Whether they think their imaginary friend is better than an actual friend and why.

Recommendation: To do multiple sessions on imagination and imaginary friends, pair Beekle with We Forgot Brock.

This lesson plan was contributed by Karen Emmerman.