Lesson 3: Computer architecture

Learning that the more Random Access Memory (RAM) the robot has, the more instructions it can carry out in a row, pupils play a game that simulates programming a Mars Rover

Before the lesson

Download classroom resources

Learning objective

  • To identify the computer architecture of the Mars Rovers

National curriculum

Pupils should be taught to:

  • Understand computer networks including the internet; how they can provide multiple services, such as the world-wide web; and the opportunities they offer for communication and collaboration

Success criteria

Cross-curricular links

Attention grabber

Main event


Pupils needing extra support: This activity is self-supporting and self-extending, but children who are likely to struggle are probably best paired with more confident children so they can watch them before having their own turn.


Pupils working at greater depth: The activity is self-extending, but children should be extended to consider why Rovers are not sent to Mars with greater RAM (cost implications) and to think of other useful sensors and output devices which could be included in the 2020 Rover.

Wrapping up

Assessing pupils' progress and understanding


Created by:
Richard Williams,  
Computing specialist
Richard is a Year 6 Teacher at St. Pancras Primary School. Richard’s passion for teaching was recognised when he received Suffolk’s ‘Raising The Bar’ award for Innovation 2016. With his class he made the world’s first guided VR:360 school tour…
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