Building by Numbers

Scripture: I Kings 6-8 and 2 Chronicles 2-7

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will review the grandeur of the temple being built and that very specific numbers were recorded.
  • Students will learn to rote count and recognize numerical quantities by building a structure with a certain number of blocks.  

Guiding Questions:

  • What English words are used to express numbers?
  • How do we count in English?

Materials: blocks, Legos, boxes or other similar building supplies, cards with numbers written on them in word form

Procedure: Review the building of the Temple from 1 Kings. Focus especially on how specific measurements and numbers were recorded so that readers can appreciate the grandeur of the project. The huge amount of resources and large dimensions reflect God’s glory and the blessings that he gave Solomon. Prepare students for the activity by reviewing numbers in English. Count aloud as a group. Students can also count aloud one at a time by having each student say aloud a number. Practice matching quantities of objects to the English number. Say the number in English, write it, count to it and show the quantity of that number.

After students have reviewed, do the following activity: Set up stations around the room with building blocks (or other similar resource) in each station. At each station, there should be a card with a number written on it in English. At each station, students count out that many blocks and then design a building with that number. For less advanced students, have only the correct number of blocks so that students learn that the number is that quantity. Encourage students to count up to the given number. More advanced students can have lots of blocks presented and then count out the correct amount. If possible, have the number’s symbol on the back so that students can check their work. Allow students to move to a new station when they are finished. Work in groups of 2-4.

Additional Questions:

  • Why do you think that the specific dimensions were recorded?
  • What patterns do you see in the words when counting in English?

Supplemental Activity: Students can design their own building on paper and record dimensions with English numbers. Encourage them to draw out their designs. Then provide resources for them so they can switch plans with a partner and try building each other’s designs.

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