High In The Sky

Scripture: Genesis 10-11

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will learn everyone once spoke the same language
  • Students will learn man was tempted to challenge God’s place in their lives
  • Students will learn God created multiple languages to prevent the people from completing the Tower of Babel
  • Students will learn God also caused the people to spread over the entire earth
  • Students will learn we are still tempted today to put ourselves and other things in the place that only belongs to God
  • Students will learn the differences between the construction of a ziggurat and a skyscraper.

Guiding Question: How does foundation affect how types of buildings are created?

Materials: Small blocks (blocks suitable for building)

Procedure: Review the story of The Tower of Babel. Explain that the Tower of Babel was a type of building called a ziggurat (a building with various levels, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ziggurat) Have the students share why they think the Tower of Babel was a ziggurat and not a skyscraper? Give students small blocks or other building materials. Have them experiment building a pyramid, a tower without a deep foundation and a tower with a deep foundation. This can be done individually or with partners. Have them note the differences in their buildings. Ask the students: Why would the people in ancient times have preferred building pyramids over the more modern towers?

Students should come to the conclusion that pyramids can be built on flat ground regardless of the type of ground bus of the wide base. Towers can only have a flat base if built on solid rock otherwise they must have a foundation dug deep enough to handle the load. The pyramid or ziggurat allowed ancients to build large buildings without the mechanized digging equipment we have today.

Additional Questions: How do different building materials impact the structure of a tower?

Supplemental Activity: Have the students experiment building a tower with different materials such as building blocks, clay, sand. (You want to have materials that will be easy and difficult to use when building.) After students have tried building a tower with the different materials, have them explain what was difficult and why.

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