SPIKE™ Essential

Underwater Quest

Maria is curious to explore life below the sea. How can she get the submarine in and out of the water?

30-45 min.
Grades 1-2


  • Review the Underwater Quest lesson in the LEGO® Education SPIKE App.
  • If necessary, pre-teach these related vocabulary words: loop, submarine, turtle, and underwater.
  • 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 a time when your students had to repeat an action over and over in order to complete a task.
    • Talk with your students about how they need to move their bodies in order to swim.
    • Ask questions, like: What do your arms and legs do when you're swimming? What else do you need to do to keep your body moving in the water?
  • Introduce your students to the story’s main characters and the first challenge: getting the submarine to move.
  • 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 moves the submarine.
  • Have your students iterate and test their models to complete the next challenge in the app:
    • Change the submarine for Maria's next trip.
  • You can find building support in the Tips section below.


(Whole Class, 5 Minutes)

  • Gather your students together to reflect on their completed challenges.
  • Ask questions, like: How did the submarine move? How did you make the submarine repeat its movement?


(Whole Class, 5 Minutes)

  • Prompt your students to discuss and reflect on ways of using loops or a program with repeated movement.
  • Ask questions, like: How do you think programming the submarine with using a loop made it easier for Maria to visit the turtles? Why do you think it was helpful to program the submarine using a loop?
  • 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 how an action can be repeated to complete a task.
  • 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 how an action can be repeated to complete a task.
    • Blue: I can describe how an action can be repeated to complete a task.
    • Green: I can describe how an action can be repeated to complete a task, 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…


Model Tip

  • After your students complete their first challenge, they’ll be provided with three Inspiration Images and an open-ended prompt for improving their models.
  • The Inspiration Images are to help spark their imaginations as they experiment and change their models.

There aren't any building instructions for this challenge.


Simplify this lesson by:

  • Reading the Underwater Quest story and instructions from the LEGO® Education SPIKE App aloud to your students
  • Selecting one Inspiration Image to help your students change their models

Increase the difficulty by:

  • Adding the Light to the model and including it in the program
  • Clicking Show Full Palette in the app to utilize more Coding Blocks


  • Have your students research and write a short paragraph about why they think it's important to look after wildlife, like turtles.

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

Language Arts: CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.1.8

Teacher Support

Students will:

  • Understand that an action can be repeated
  • Develop programs that use simple loops (repetitions) to address a problem
  • 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-10
  • NGSS K-2-ETS 1-2
  • ISTE 1.5a

Language Arts Extension


Student Material

Student Worksheet

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