Monday, August 30, 2010

Would Noah's Ark Fit on Your Street?

If Noah was alive today, and building his ark, could he build it on your street? Would it fit? That, was our science question for the day, though in the end it turned into more of a math question, because of all the measuring involved.

First, we found the measurements for the ark in Genesis 6:15. It was 450 feet long, 75 feet wide, and 45 feet high (if you're a cubit fan, you'll have to multiply the cubits out by 18 inches, and then divide the number by 12, to get feet). Then, we went outside to do some measuring.

I thought about having the children run a pre-measured piece of string down the street, but 450 feet of string seemed like a lot to have to wind back up, when we were done. So instead, we used a laser meter. Unfortunately, outside in the daylight, we couldn't measure very far with it, so we had to break our measurements down.

We decided to start by measuring squares on our sidewalk, and then counted the number of squares down the straight part of our street, and multiplied it out.

Can you see the kids at the far end of the street? They were standing 340 feet away. So, the straight part of our street is 110 feet too short for the ark to sit on. Noah would have to take a few houses out, for the sake of length.

But, we discovered the width of the ark was about right to run down our street, just touching the fronts of the houses on each side.

And finally, we figured out the ark would stand about twice as tall as our house.

It was a big boat. And now, every time we walk out our front door, or drive down our street, we'll be reminded of just how big it really was.

It's great to be a homeschooler.


  1. I think your kids might find it fascinating that Freedom of the Seas is the largest luxury cruise ship in the world, owned by Royal Caribbean.

    This cruise ship weighs 160,000 tons, it is 1,112 feet long, 184 feet wide and it has 15 passenger decks holding 3,634 guests double-occupancy. Freedom of the Seas towers 208 feet tall, approximately the same height as two of the Statue of Liberty, placed head to toe.

    Now can this ship host two of every species? I wonder...

  2. Raising a Happy Child - I don't think Noah had to worry about including space for the casinos, or luxury dining rooms of a cruise ship :)

  3. I know it wouldn't fit on our culdesac, and I'm guessing it wouldn't fit on the whole of the street, but what a great hands on lesson for them to figure out.

  4. I think this is one of the coolest experiments ever! My 6 year old would love it; he is always drawing Noah's ark.

  5. I was thinking as I read your post, I wonder if the ark would even fit in our town? I love the picture of the kids all looking up to the top of your house! Great hands on lesson!

  6. What a wicked cool idea. I love things that give kids a true sense of things they cannot see first hand.

  7. We did this last year and my boys LOVED it. We happened to be reading about Noah at the same time that we were learning about the Mayflower. As a contrast, we outlined both.

    The Mayflower was tiny, especially considering how many people came over on it... :)

    I'm looking forward to having them do more of the number crunching when they are a little bit older like your kids did!

  8. Heather - That's a great idea! We might return to that closer to Thanksgiving - thanks :)

  9. Your ideas are so phenomenal! I jus started homeschooling my oldest daughter (kindergarten), and I will be using many of your ideas. WE may even have to visit Montana... (I love that place!) THANK YOU!