Solomon Builds a Temple: A Lesson Set

Lesson Set: Solomon Builds a Temple

Workshop Summaries

  • Construction/Building:  Sanctuary Tour and Temple Block Building with labeled boxes.
  • Art / Storytelling:  Making a shoebox version of your church and then hear the shoebox version story of Solomon building the temple.
  • Video:  King Solomon (Nest) or Pollyanna.

Scripture Reference:

Solomon builds a temple for God. 2 Chronicles 2-7


God knows that we are each treasured members of the church family.

Lesson Objectives: Kids will

  • discover how/why King Solomon built a Temple to God
  • learn more about our Holy House of God
  • put into action ways they can be valued members in our Holy House of God

Bible Memory Verse:

God said to Solomon, “I will listen to the prayers prayed in this place. I have chosen this Temple and made it holy. I will be worshiped here forever. I will always watch over it and love it.” 2 Chronicles 7:15, 16


Building Workshop:  Temple Rock

1. Talk about the word “temple”: how it compares and contrasts to the word “church”.

Show an illustration of Solomon's Temple (found in various sources, including the internet)

Show photos of different types of churches, including yours, including cathedrals.

  • Is our church a temple? Is our church holy? Is our church a house of God? How should we behave in a church of God?

2. Have older kids open their Bibles and read 2 Chronicles 7:15-16. (Remember, it is important for kids to use the table of contents and find the book of 2 Chronicles for themselves in the Bible.) Talk about the verse and how our church is God’s holy house.(For The P.K’s create some easy “song” for the kids to sing a portion of this verse. This would be great for all of the kids to eventually learn for the Dedication of the sanctuary later in the fall.)

3. Now go TOUR the Sanctuary. Ask students about "what we do" in various locations in the Sanctuary, and what "mood" the congregation is in during that point in the service.

4. Begin to Build Your Temple

Hand each student a box (or piece of cardboard) which represents part of the Temple Wall we are going to build.  Have them decorate each block with worship words, attitudes, and things the church means to them, what the church does. Include their name, names of friends and family. Assemble a "wall" at an appropriate place near the main entrance of the church or in the sanctuary. WE are the building blocks of the church!   Remember to have one LARGE box decorated with Jesus' name, as he is our cornerstone. You may have some boxes pre-positioned with the names of various heroes of the Bible, and heroes of your own congregation!

Over the course of several weeks, other classes will add to this wall.

Alternately, if you gather enough boxes and have enough time, you could build a small version of Solomon's Temple, and later, add an inner sanctum and things like the Bronze bowl and altar at the entrance outside the building.

If you have extra time, make clothespin people to be worshippers.
5. Close in prayer thanking God for giving us inspiring places to pray to and praise him.


Art and Storytelling Workshop

Summary of Lesson Activities:

Creating a Shoebox Version of our Church's Sanctuary

Supplies List:

  • Shoe boxes
  • Scissors
  • Wood Strips
  • Tissue Paper
  • Construction Paper
  • Other art supplies

Leader Preparation:

  • Gather the materials.
  • Read the scripture ahead of time.


Opening-Welcome and Lesson Introduction:

Greet the children and introduce yourself.

Open with a prayer.

Dig-Main Content and Reflection:

This workshop is similar to the Build a Temple workshop, but does it in a smaller, storytelling fashion, and the shoebox building they make is of YOUR church. The shoebox kits can later become part of the Box Temple Display made in the other workshop.

1. First.... give out shoeboxes and have the children design them to look like YOUR sanctuary at your church.  You may want to have them work in pairs. You may need to help them cut out windows. If you have stained glass, have colored tissue paper.  Fold construction paper into an accordion to represent pews. Use wood strips/tongue depressors, pipe cleaners (all your craft supplies!) for things like the cross in your Sanctuary. Use PASTE instead of glue so that things stick QUICK.

2. Now, tell the Bible story (see following) using the Bible Story mat.

3. Have the kids place their Shoebox Temples with the STONE WALL they build in week 1.  Later they can take them home.

The TEACHER should pre-make their own Shoebox Kit for the story retelling. See the story for the list of props they might create. Invite students to help you make certain objects for the story kit.

Telling the Story with the Bible Story Mat and Teacher's Shoebox Kit

Sit on the floor in a circle. As you tell the story, you slowly assemble the elements of the scene you are describing. Distribute all your props/pieces among your students, and as you read, INVITE THEM to come forward and place the piece into the story on the floor.

Begin by placing a brown cloth to represent the land, and blue cloth to represent the sea. Look at the possible props in this story and collect or make these props in advance.  You may also prepare "clothespin" puppets to represent the people in the story.

The Story:
King David had a great idea. What do you know about David? (David and Goliath, shepherd etc.)

King David wanted to build a beautiful temple for God. But God said, “No David. I want your son to build my temple. Not you!” So when David was ready to die, his son—King Solomon, promised his father that he would be a temple for God in the Promised Land. After all, it didn’t seem fair that he had a beautiful place to live, but God’s house was just a tent!

So King Solomon sent a message to a king in another land to sell him beautiful cedar trees. That king sent workers into the forest to cut some beautiful trees for God’s temple. (pretend your are working very hard sawing down a tree. Now, let’s pretend to roll the logs to the sea to be taken to King Solomon. Okay, let’s pretend to tie the logs together to float them down the sea coast to King Solomon.

Place some small twigs in the Mediterranean. Push the twigs down the Mediterranean then place them next to Solomon. King Solomon hired workers to cut big stones for the temple.
Pretend that you are stonecutters cutting the stones for the temple and shaping them into smooth blocks.Place some pieces of gravel with the sticks.

The king Solomon hired best craftsmen to make beautiful curtains and furniture for the temple.
Pretend that some of you are curtain makers sewing the curtain for the temple. Pretend some of you are cutting and hammering pieces of wood together to make the furniture.

God’s people all worked very hard and did their best building the temple and making the temple furniture. After the temple was all finished, God’s people gathered together for a big festival when the furniture was put in.Place the shoebox temple at the bottom of the mat near the Dead Sea. Place Solomon and other characters next to it.

This piece of furniture was called the altar. Show the children the block altar. It was placed outside the temple building right here. It was the place where animal sacrifices were offered.
Place the altar in its corresponding hole. How do we give our offerings to God in our church?

This is called the laver. Show the kids the laver “juice lid”. All the priests had to wash themselves before they entered the temple. So it was filled with water. Where do we use water in our worship service?

Inside the temple building there was a table with 7 special candles on it. These candles were called the Menorah.

There was another table over here that had special bread on it. There were 12 loaves of bread on this table. This bread was called the shew bread. What do we call our table and bread in our church?

Hand out some bread or matzo cracker for the kids to taste at this point.

This table was right next to the curtain. The priests burned incense on it.
Show kids what incense is. Let them smell it.

This back room behind the curtain was called the Holy of Holies. This is the place where the special box (The Ark of the Covenant) with God’s laws was kept. It was in this room all by itself. Only a special priest could go in this room and only on one special day of the year.  Does our church have a Holy of Holies?  Why not? 

Surrounding the temple was a big stone wall.Let kids help you make a row of blocks all the way around the temple building. The part between the wall and the building was called the courtyard. But this whole thing. . .including the courtyard, was called the temple.

Everyday the priests gave sacrifices at the altar. Walk the priest figure to the altar and each of the following places as you tell them about them. Everyday the priests washed themselves at the Laver before they went into the building. Everyday they lit the Menorah with the special candles on this table. They put special bread on the table. And they burned incense on this table. Does our minister do these things everyday?

Did the priest go behind this curtain to the Ark of the Covenant every day? No, only one time a year on a special day and only one special priest called the High Priest could go back there.  This day was the day of forgiveness, the Day of Atonement. On what special Sunday do we celebrate God's forgiveness of our sins upon the cross?

After all the furniture was put inside the temple, King Solomon prayed and asked God to take care of the temple day and night. God answered Solomon and said: “I will listen to the prayers prayed in this place. I have chosen this Temple and made it holy. I will be worshiped here forever. I will always watch over it and love it.” 2 Chronicles 7:15, 16


Ask the students what they think the most important part of the Temple is to God?  The answer is YOU/THEM.  Point to various things in the Temple, and if the kids say "no" then take it away. Leave the characters/puppets for last and make your point.


Video Workshop

Summary of Lesson Activities:

Two Movie Options:

One: Watch the NEST video: “King Solomon”. Follow up with questions from the matching NEST activity booklet.

Two: Use the movie Pollyanna as suggested by the original lesson author below.

Supplies List:

  •  NEST video: “King Solomon”
  • the movie Pollyanna
  • Popcorn

Leader Preparation:

  • Gather the materials.
  • Preview the videos.


Opening- Welcome and Lesson Introduction:

Greet the children and introduce yourself.

Open with a prayer.

Dig-Main Content and Reflection:

1. On a large piece of paper taped to the wall, have kids list parts of any church and church service. (pastor, sermon, pulpit, organ/piano, choir, music, building. . .etc. See if they name “people”.)

2. Kids will be watching portions of the movie “Pollyanna”. The leader of this workshop will need to become familiar with the movie as only selected clips will be shown. Begin showing the video in the scene where the maids leave the kitchen and Pollyanna is talking to the cook in the kitchen.

3. Tell kids: Pollyanna is an orphan who comes to live with her serious and stern aunt, Polly. Pollyanna always looks at things in a glad and positive, happy way. As we watch this short clip, lets look for the parts of the church and the church service shown in the movie, and check off the ones we also thought of! Stop the video when Pollyanna says, “Because it will be six whole days before Sunday comes around again!”

4. Advance video to the scene where Pollyanna is bringing a note to Reverend Ford in the meadow. (While the tape is advancing, discuss with kids “glad” thoughts they might have about Sundays and maybe even about our church, Faith Community Lutheran.

5. Begin the tape when Pollyanna says to Mrs. Ford, “I have a note from Aunt Polly for Reverend Ford.” Stop tape when the church service is over.

6. Discuss: What is different about Reverend Ford, the people at church, and the entire service now? What made the difference? How would this movie have been different if Pollyanna would not have been in it? How could God have been given credit in the movie for a change in attitude? Is there a person we have learned about in the Bible that has some of the same qualities as Pollyanna?

7. Have the kids refer back to the list they made at the beginning of the class. Are there any additional items they would like to add. Follow up by singing, “The Church is the People.”


8. Close by talking about the poem, “Builders” and closing with a prayer.

9. If there is time at the end of the session, kids can watch the rest of the video, Pollyanna”.  The P.K.s: retell the story of Solomon with felt board and feltboard figures.


A lesson set written by member Nanette Goings
Adapted by Neil MacQueen

 A representative of reformatted this post to improve readability.

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