SPIKE™ Essential

Arctic Ride

Leo is going on an Arctic adventure to see polar bears. How can he use his snowmobile to get there?

30-45 min.
Grades 1-2


  • Review the Arctic Ride lesson in the LEGO® Education SPIKE App.
  • If necessary, pre-teach these related vocabulary words: the Arctic, backward, forward, left, right, and snowmobile.
  • Consider the abilities and backgrounds of all your students. Differentiate the lesson to make it accessible to everyone. See the Differentiation section below for suggestions.
  • If time allows, plan and facilitate the language arts extension. See the Extension section below for more information.


(Whole Class, 5 Minutes)

  • Facilitate a quick discussion about following directions to get somewhere, like a playground.
    • Talk with your students about using directional vocabulary, like left, right, forward, and backward.
    • Ask questions, like: How could you explain to a friend how to get to a playground? What words would you use?
  • Introduce your students to the story’s main characters and the first challenge: making the snowmobile go.
  • Distribute a brick set and a device to each group.


(Small Groups, 30 Minutes)

  • Have your students use the LEGO® Education SPIKE App to guide them through their first challenge:
    • Make and try the program that makes the snowmobile go.
  • Have your students iterate and test their models to complete the next two challenges in the app:
    • Change the program for Leo’s next trip. Don't forget to make sure he can get home!
  • You can find coding support in the Tips section below.


(Whole Class, 5 Minutes)

  • Gather your students together to reflect on their completed challenges.
  • Ask questions, like: Where did Leo go on his next adventure? How did your snowmobile get him there?


(Whole Class, 5 Minutes)

  • Prompt your students to discuss and reflect on how to describe a sequence.
  • Ask questions, like: Why is it important to use words like "left, right, forward, and backward" when giving directions? Why is it important to be able to give directions to a friend?
  • Have your students clean up their workstations.


(Ongoing Throughout the Lesson)

  • Ask guiding questions to encourage your students to “think aloud” and explain their thought processes and reasoning in the decisions they've made while building and programming.

Observation Checklist

  • Measure your students’ proficiency in describing where the model goes and how they can get there.
  • Create a scale that matches your needs. For example:
    1. Needs additional support
    2. Can work independently
    3. Can teach others


  • Have each student choose the brick that they feel best represents their performance.
    • Yellow: I think I can describe where my model needs to go and how it can get there.
    • Blue: I can describe where my model needs to go and how it can get there.
    • Green: I can describe where my model needs to go and how it can get there, and I can help a friend do it too.


  • In their small groups, have your students 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 Tip

  • After your students complete their first challenge, they'll be provided with a map.
  • Your students can use the map and experiment with the available Coding Blocks to modify their programs to follow the route for the trip.


Simplify this lesson by:

  • Reading the Arctic Ride story and instructions from the LEGO® Education SPIKE App aloud to your students
  • Shortening the lesson to only include the first challenge

Increase the difficulty by:

  • Creating a map that their peers can use for Leo’s next adventure
  • Clicking Show Full Palette in the app to utilize more Coding Blocks


  • Have your students participate in a shared research and writing project to create a “how-to” brochure about exploring the Arctic.

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

Language Arts: CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.1.7

Teacher Support

Students will:

  • Use directional vocabulary to describe a sequence
  • Break a problem down into smaller parts
  • Practice helping a story character
  • Participate in collaborative conversations

(one for every two students)

  • LEGO® Education SPIKE Essential Set
  • Device with the LEGO® Education SPIKE App installed
  • CSTA 1A-AP-11
  • NGSS K-2-ETS1-2
  • ISTE 1.5d

Language Arts Extension


Student Material

Student Worksheet

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