"What animal is that? That's an ox. Doesn't look like an ox. Well, two oxen then. It looks like just one. OK, it looks like one ox, thanks for agreeing with me. Now stop whining and look at Uzziah."
Read and draw: "And they carried the ark of God upon a new cart, and brought it out of the house of Abinadab which was on the hill; David and all the house of Israel were making merry before the LORD with all their might, with songs and lyres and harps and tambourines and castanets and cymbals. And when they came to the threshing floor of Nacon, Uzziah put out his hand to the ark of God and took hold of it, for the oxen stumbled. And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzziah; and God smote him there because he put forth his hand to the ark; and he died there beside the ark of God."
We discuss how the Ark was too pure to be touched by sinful humans, which of course is why it had carrying poles. One of the kids asks, Do you think Mary could touch it? "Wow, I don't know. I suppose; although I don't think she would have presumed to do so. And the Ark was gone by the time Mary was alive. Good question."
I was tempted right then to digress a bit about Mary being the Ark of the New Covenant, but decided to let it go. But next month when we get to the Annunciation, I'll introduce the New Ark concept by starting with this Old Ark scene from 2Samuel. I'll ask who remembers the question someone asked about who might have been able to touch the Ark and live. That'll be the jumping-off point for talking about Mary the New Ark containing sinless baby Jesus inside her for nine months.
Drawing and reading about the Holy of Holies* in Solomon's temple: "The inner sanctuary was twenty cubits long, twenty cubits wide, and twenty cubits high; and he overlaid it with pure gold. In the most holy place he made two cherubim of wood and overlaid them with gold. The wings of the cherubim together extended twenty cubits: one wing of the one, of five cubits, touched the wall of the house, and its other wing, of five cubits, touched the wing of the other cherub; and of this cherub, one wing, of five cubits, touched the wall of the house, and the other wing, also of five cubits, was joined to the wing of the first cherub. The wings of these cherubim extended twenty cubits; the cherubim stood on their feet, facing the nave. Then the priests brought the ark of the covenant of the LORD to its place, in the inner sanctuary of the house, in the most holy place, underneath the wings of the cherubim. For the cherubim spread out their wings over the place of the ark, so that the cherubim made a covering above the ark and its poles." Not included in the text is the High Priest at lower right, and the LORD's presence hovering over the Mercy Seat. Cherubim's swords are my addition based on Genesis.
I first drew the 30 x 30 x 30 shape of the space, and the kids recognized it as a cube. Then the other details were added on the fly as they came up while reading. The cube will matter this spring when we draw and read about a much larger one described in Revelations: "The city lies foursquare, its length the same as its breadth; and he measured the city with his rod, twelve thousand stadia; its length and breadth and height are equal." The other bits will matter when we transition from God's Old Covenant dwelling to his New Covenant dwelling.
When teaching adults, a picture is worth a thousand words. A live drawing is worth five thousand words. And with kids, a live drawing is worth ten thousand words. When I get to Revelations in April, will they remember the shape and stuff of the Holy of Holies? You bet they will.