SPIKE™ Prime Set


Practice graphing virtual energy values.

30-45 min.
Years 7-9 OR Key Stage 3
Warm up - Lesson Header

Prepare for Blended Learning

  • This lesson is designed to be completed primarily using the SPIKE App. Your pupils will use the programming blocks to create a simulation without connecting to the SPIKE Prime Hub. If you would prefer to facilitate this lesson using the SPIKE Prime Set, you can find building instructions in the Additional Resources section of this page.
  • Watch the lesson video on this page.
  • Read through the pupil material for this lesson in the SPIKE App or via the link on this page.
  • You might wish to consider:
    • Choosing the right tool(s) and the right place. For example, watching videos, reading a textbook or preparing for a hands-on experience can easily be done at home. Performing the experiment and collecting data ‘hands-on’ is easier in a classroom setting.
    • Using a variety of tools and allowing for broad differentiation. This will increase your pupils' engagement and improve their learning outcomes.
    • Providing various methods of virtual collaboration. Here are some examples:
      • Videoconferencing
      • Blogs, chats or wall posts
      • Digital versions of pupil worksheets
    • Adapting the lesson flow to account for not being in a classroom setting throughout the entire lesson. We've provided an example lesson flow below.
  • Here are some other ways you can adapt the lesson flow to suit your pupils’ needs:
    • Have your pupils watch the videos describing what they're about to do. You can point them to the SPIKE App or use the pupil worksheet URL.
    • Provide other material that you’ve already prepared on this topic.
    • Customise the Inventor Notebook to have your pupils prepare their learning experience and reflect on their findings (please see Additional Resources).
    • Use the lesson brief (a printable 1-page lesson overview) to inspire your pupils with an open-ended challenge (please see Additional Resources).


(Before Class, 20 Min.)

  • The topic of this lesson is metabolic energy. Your pupils will graph the virtual values of the calories burned during exercise. These values are approximated for the MET (i.e. metabolic equivalent of task), which will allow them to explore different types of energy. This will open a broader discussion of kinetic and potential energy in the unit's later lessons.
  • Use various materials to engage your pupils on the topic of metabolic energy.

Ignite a Discussion

Start a discussion by asking questions related to the lesson. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Can you name two smart tracking devices and describe what they’re able to track?
  • Which type of energy are you expending when you exercise?
  • How can you measure that energy?
  • Which unit would you use to measure that energy?

Have your pupils write down their thoughts and formulate a hypothesis.


(During the Lesson, 30 Min.)

  • Have your pupils explore the code that's already on the Programming Canvas.
  • Ask them to explain what they see on the line graph tool as the virtual calories burned are plotted.


(During the Lesson, 15 Min.)

  • Ask your pupils to create a simulated workout. Explain that they should use a simulated robot on the screen to perform the exercises.
  • Have them graph the number of virtual calories the robot is burning while doing the exercises.
  • Have them follow the data set that has been preloaded on the line graph.


(After the Lesson, 20 Min.)

  • Assign your pupils a follow-up task to expand their learning. Here are some suggestions:
    • Ask each pupil to record a video of themselves performing the same exercises as their simulated robot.
    • Have each student describe what a ‘MET’ is and how it can help them keep track of the energy they’ve burned.


  • Give feedback on each pupil's performance.
  • To simplify the process, you can use the assessment rubrics that have been provided.

Assessment Opportunities

Teacher Observation Checklist
Establish a scale that suits your needs, for example:

Partially accomplished
Fully accomplished

Use the following success criteria to evaluate your pupils' progress:

  • The pupils are able to trace graphs using virtual calorie values.
  • The pupils are able to export values for further use.
  • The pupils are able to create virtual workouts, graph virtual values and use these graphs to explain what metabolic energy is.

Have each pupil choose the brick that they feel best represents their performance.

  • Blue: I can create a short program that displays images of a robot.
  • Yellow: I can create a program that generates a line graph.
  • Violet: I can create a program that generates a complex line graph showing different types of slopes.

Peer Feedback
Encourage your pupils to provide feedback to one another by:

Having one pupil use the coloured brick scale above to score another pupil’s performance.
Asking them to present constructive feedback to one another so that they can improve their group’s performance during the next lesson. This is an excellent opportunity to use videoconferencing tools or blog posting tools in a blended learning scenario.



Take this lesson to the next level by:

  • Having your pupils build a physical model by following the building instructions for the Giant model, then using their models to conduct the ‘simulated robot’ experiment
  • Making sure that your pupils have adjusted the program that’s been suggested in the SPIKE App to match the configuration of their models


Building Tips
Introducing a Model for This Lesson
You can use this model if you have access to a SPIKE Prime Set.


Coding Tips
Using Streaming Mode
To play a program without being connected to a Hub, you must use Steaming Mode. This mode executes each programming block on your device.

Main Program (without a model)

SPIKE Prime Science Warm Up - Step02 - en-gb

Possible Program (using the suggested model)

SPIKE Prime Science Warm Up Robot - en-gb

Science Data Tips

Here’s an example of the data your pupils can expect from this experiment.



Maths Extension
To incorporate the development of maths skills:

  • Have your pupils explore further equations of the form y = mx + b in this exercise and describe some of the things they see.
  • Ask them to answer these questions in writing:
    • Why does the graph you’ve plotted start at the origin ‘(0,0)’?
    • Why are some of the slopes steeper than others?
    • How could you generate negative slopes (i.e. those sloping downwards)?
    • What would a downward slope indicate?

Note: This will require additional time.


Language Arts Extension
To incorporate the development of language arts skills:

  • Have your pupils research different types of energy (e.g., metabolic, potential, kinetic, electric) and describe them using written or sketched examples. Make sure that they research potential and kinetic energy because these concepts will be used throughout this unit.

Note: This will require additional time.


Career Links
The pupils who enjoyed this lesson might be interested in exploring this career pathway:

  • Health Science

Teacher Support

  • Create a program that will introduce pupils to the LEGO® Education SPIKE Prime’s line graphing tool
  • Graph data coming from virtual energy values

Device with the LEGO Education SPIKE App installed
LEGO Education SPIKE Prime Set (optional)

DFE Science Programmes of Study KS3

Experimental skills and investigations - 4

  • select, plan and carry out the most appropriate types of scientific enquiries to test predictions, including identifying independent, dependent and control variables, where appropriate

Experimental skills and investigations - 5

  • make and record observations and measurements using a range of methods for different investigations; and evaluate the reliability of methods and suggest possible improvements

Changes in systems - 2

  • comparing the starting with the final conditions of a system and describing increases and decreases in the amounts of energy associated with movements, temperatures, changes in positions in a field, in elastic distortions and in chemical compositions

DFE Mathematics Programmes of Study KS3

Reason mathematically - 2

  • extend and formalise their knowledge of ratio and proportion in working with measures and geometry, and in formulating proportional relations algebraically

DFE Computing Programmes of Study KS3

Subject content - 7

  • undertake creative projects that involve selecting, using, and combining multiple applications, preferably across a range of devices, to achieve challenging goals, including collecting and analysing data and meeting the needs of known users

DFE Design & Tecnology Programmes of Study KS3

Design - 1

  • use research and exploration, such as the study of different cultures, to identify and understand user needs

Design - 2

  • identify and solve their own design problems and understand how to reformulate problems given to them

Pupil Material

Student Worksheet

Download, view or share as an online HTML page or a printable PDF.