SPIKE™ Essential

The Perfect Swing

Maria doesn’t want a ride that goes too fast. Do you think that the swing could be a perfect fit?

30-45 min.
Years 1-2


  • Review the Perfect Swing lesson in the LEGO® Education SPIKE App.
  • If you feel that it would be beneficial, pre-teach these related vocabulary words: change, need, rotate, solution and want.
  • Consider the abilities and backgrounds of all your pupils. Differentiate the lesson to make it accessible to everyone. Please refer to the Differentiation section below for suggestions on how to do this.
  • If time permits, plan and facilitate the language arts extension. Please refer to the Extension section below for more information.


(Whole Class, 5 Minutes)

  • Facilitate a quick discussion about making changes to include things that others need or want.
    • Talk with your pupils about two friends who want to go on the same ride at an amusement park. One wants to go fast, but the other doesn't.
    • Ask questions like these: How could it be possible that they both like to go on the same ride? What would happen if they rode the ride at the same time?
  • Introduce your pupils to the story’s main characters and the first challenge: making the swing move.
  • Distribute a brick set and a device to each group.


(Small Groups, 30 Minutes)

  • Have your pupils use the LEGO® Education SPIKE App to guide them through their first challenge:
    • Create and test the program that makes the swing move.
  • Have your pupils iterate and test their models to complete the next two challenges in the app:
    • Change the program to make the swing better for a friend who would like a more exciting ride.
    • Upgrade the swing for Maria and her friend.
  • You can find coding and building help in the Tips section below.


(Whole Class, 5 Minutes)

  • Gather your pupils together to reflect on their completed challenges.
  • Ask questions like these: What did you change in order to make the swing perfect for Maria and her friend? How did changing the program make the ride different?


(Whole Class, 5 Minutes)

  • Prompt your pupils to discuss and reflect on the importance of making changes to include things that others need or want.
  • Ask questions like these: Why do you think that it's important to include things that other people need or want when you're creating something new? How do you feel when something that you need or want is included?
  • Have your pupils tidy up their workstations.


(Ongoing Throughout the Lesson)

  • Ask guiding questions to encourage your pupils to ‘think aloud’ and explain their thought processes and reasoning in the decisions they’ve made while building and programming their models.

Observation Checklist

  • Measure your pupils’ proficiency in changing a solution to meet others’ needs or wants.
  • Establish a scale that suits your needs. For example:
    1. Requires additional support
    2. Can work independently
    3. Can teach others

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

  • Yellow: I think that I can make changes to include things that others
    need or want.
  • Blue: I can make changes to include things that others
    need or want.
  • Green: I can make changes to include things that others need or want, and I can also help a friend to do it.

Peer Feedback

  • In their small groups, have your pupils discuss their experiences working together.
  • Encourage them to use statements like these:
    • I liked it when you…
    • I'd like to hear more about how you…


Coding Tips

  • After your pupils have completed their first challenge, they'll be provided with three Inspiration Coding Blocks, which will help them to modify their programs.
  • The Inspiration Coding Blocks are intended to spark their imaginations as they experiment to find their own solutions.
Gecko U2L3_ICB_1 - en
Gecko U2L3_ICB_1 - en
Gecko U2L3_ICB_2 - en
Gecko U2L3_ICB_3 - en

Model Tip

  • After your pupils have completed their second challenge, they’ll be provided with three Inspiration Images and an open-ended prompt, which will help them to improve their models.
  • The Inspiration Images are meant to help spark their imaginations as they experiment and change their models.

There are no specific building instructions for this challenge.


Simplify this lesson by:

  • Shortening the lesson to include only the first challenge
  • Selecting one Inspiration Image to help your pupils to change their models

Increase the difficulty by:

  • Adding the Colour Sensor and including it in the program that starts the swing
  • Adding more friends to the ride and changing the program to meet their needs and wants


  • Have your pupils interview their peers to find out what they like and don’t like about different amusement park rides.

If facilitated, this will extend beyond the 45-minute lesson.

Language Arts: National Curriculum English En2/1 Spoken Language

Teacher Support

The pupils will:

  • Gather information about the others’ needs or wants
  • Change a solution to meet others’ needs or wants
  • Practise helping a story character
  • Describe key ideas or details from a text

(one for every two pupils)

  • LEGO® Education SPIKETM Essential Set
  • Device with the LEGO® Education SPIKE App installed

National Curriculum

Design and Technology

  • design purposeful, functional, appealing products for themselves and other users based on design criteria
  • evaluate their ideas and products against design criteria


  • Spoken Language
  • use spoken language to develop understanding through speculating, hypothesising, imagining and exploring ideas
  • explain and discuss their understanding of books, poems and other material, both those that they listen to and those that they read for themselves.

Pupil Material

Student Worksheet

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