The Kingdoms of Ancient Israel


Social Studies Middle School The Kingdoms of Ancient Israel
Students learn about the ancient Israelite kingdoms and the Biblical prophets. First, they listen to the Biblical story of Ruth and Naomi. Then, they examine the sequence of the three kings of the united kingdom—Saul, David, and Solomon—and the split into the northern kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judah. Then, they identify the Babylonians as the empire that destroyed the Holy Temple and sent the Jews into exile. Finally, they learn about the Biblical prophets and analyze a prophetic passage.

This learning experience is designed for device-enabled classrooms. The teacher guides the lesson, and students use embedded resources, social media skills, and critical thinking skills to actively participate. To get access to a free version of the complete lesson, sign up for an exploros account.

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Overview

In this experience, students learn about the ancient Israelite kingdoms and the Biblical prophets. First, they listen to the Biblical story of Ruth and Naomi. Then, they examine the sequence of the three kings of the united kingdom—Saul, David, and Solomon—and the split into the northern kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judah. Then, they identify the Babylonians as the empire that destroyed the Holy Temple and sent the Jews into exile. Finally, they learn about the Biblical prophets and analyze a prophetic passage.

This experience contains a lot of content. You may choose to teach it over two sessions in order to spend adequate time on the various elements of the kingdoms of ancient Israel.

Objectives

  • Describe the development of the kingdoms of Judah and Israel.
  • Explain how the Israelites were conquered and sent into exile.


From the time of the first migration of Abraham to the first exile of the ancient Israelites from their land is estimated to be about 1,400 years. This period overlaps the Age of Hammurabi in Mesopotamia through the New Kingdom of the Egyptian Empire and the rise of the Babylonian Empire. If you look at a Bible atlas, it will have many maps to show the continuously changing borders, neighboring nations, and shifting demographics that occurred throughout this time. This period is described in the historical books of the Hebrew Bible, and archaeologists have also made significant finds that teach us about this period. In this experience, you will learn about the time period starting with the kingdoms of the ancient Israelites through the first exile.

Objectives

  • Describe the development of the kingdoms of Judah and Israel.
  • Explain how the Israelites were conquered and sent into exile.




Ruth and Naomi by Thomas Matthews Rooke, 1876


The Hebrew Bible includes a book about a young woman named Ruth from the land of Moab, which is east of Canaan. Ruth married the son of an Israelite family who came to Moab due to famine in Canaan. After the death of all the men in the family, Ruth’s mother-in-law Naomi decided to return to her homeland. Ruth chose to travel with Naomi. Listen to the story of Ruth and Naomi and read along.


What words would you use to describe Ruth? To list more than one, separate them with a comma, like this: tall, short

Post your answer

Ruth is generally seen as a symbol of loyalty and faith. The Jewish tradition “rewards” her by naming her the great-grandmother of King David, whom students will learn about in this experience.


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