SpongeBob SquarePants

Boating School

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If you were looking for the article about the place, then see Mrs. Puff's Boating School.
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Episode Information
Boating School
Season №: 1
Episode №: 4b
Airdate: August 7, 1999
Sister episode(s): "Naughty Nautical Neighbors"
Writer(s): Ennio Torresan, Jr.
Erik Wiese
Doug Lawrence
Storyboard Artist(s): Erik Wiese
Storyboard: Ennio Torresan, Jr.
Animation: Tom Yasumi
Creative: Derek Drymon
See all credits for this episode.
Previous: "Naughty Nautical Neighbors"
Next: "Pizza Delivery"
List of episodes

"Boating School" is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season one. In this episode, Patrick attempts to help SpongeBob pass his driving exam.



It is the day of SpongeBob's driving exam at Mrs. Puff's Boating School, and he is very excited. If he passes it, he will get his license. Once there, he throws his unicycle away, falsely assuming he will pass. Having taken the oral exam 37 times previously, SpongeBob is able to answer the questions before they are even asked. However, upon reaching the driving portion of the exam, he realizes he was so excited so much that he did not know it was really long and hard. As a result, he gets scared and panics, and quickly crashes into a lighthouse causing Mrs. Puff's body to inflate. Mrs. Puff says, "Oh SpongeBob, why?" Later that night, he complains about his failure to Gary, who asks SpongeBob to go for a walk, which he declines. Patrick is then heard talking to him from a walkie-talkie under his bed covers. He asks SpongeBob to head to his closet for a "surprise." It is Patrick wearing his clothes and calling himself "Patrick SquarePants." SpongeBob is too depressed to laugh, and explains his problem to Patrick and mentions that he needs someone to help him think straight during the exam. Patrick quickly devises a plan. He puts a walkie-talkie inside SpongeBob's head so that he can talk SpongeBob through the test, hiding the antenna with a cowboy hat.

The next day, SpongeBob goes back to take the test again. When asked to start the boat, he initially panics, but Patrick's instructions keep him calm. Just after SpongeBob puts the boat in drive he almost floors the pedal but then Patrick goes, "Freeze mister!," and SpongeBob's foot stops just before it touches the pedal. Patrick then says, "Big toe." SpongeBob's toe then pops out of his shoe and it presses the pedal. This is followed by a video montage of SpongeBob acing the exam, interspersed with shots of Patrick eating SpongeBob's food and reading his diary while helping him. Mrs. Puff is floored by his sudden improvement and jokingly suggests that SpongeBob's success is due to an antenna under his hat through which "some guy miles away from here is giving you (him) all the answers." SpongeBob (and Patrick) finds this hilarious, until Mrs. Puff concludes, "But that would be cheating!" Upon realizing that he has been cheating, SpongeBob goes into hysterics, making Patrick realize that his method is bad, forcing Patrick to flee to his house, and driving wildly all over the course and sobbing while Mrs. Puff, in a panic, tries desperately to stop him but SpongeBob refuses to listen and crashes the boat and fails the test again, and the inflated Mrs. Puff is taken to the hospital. As he leaves boating school, he finds Gary riding his unicycle. SpongeBob rides off on it, with Gary atop his head, saying "Let's go surprise someone at the hospital!" thus ending the episode.




 ) Associated production music
 ) Original music
 ) SpongeBob music

  Hawaiian Train - Victor Cavini [title card]
  Aloha Oe - Hans Haider, Queen Lili'uokalani [opening]
  Cream Pie - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [SpongeBob rides to boating school]
  SpongeBob Theme (Version 1) - Jeremy Wakefield, Sage Guyton ["Here I come, Mrs. Puff!"]
  Quiz Organ (b) - Curtis Frederick Schwartz ["You passed the oral test, what a surprise."]
  Point of Departure K - Gregor F. Narholz [SpongeBob floors it]
  Rocket Sled to Oahu - The Mel-Tones [Mrs. Puff inflates]
  Botany Bay (b) - Robert Alexander White [that night]
  Aggressor - Sam Fonteyn [Patrick on walkie-talkie]
  Side Drum [#52.07] - Mark Nolan [drum roll]
  Hawaiian Cocktail - Richard Myhill [SpongeBob tells Patrick about the boating exam]
  Martial Links - Sam Fonteyn [walkie-talkie in SpongeBob's head]
  Real Western Steel - Bobby Black [cowboy hat]
  Appalachian Banjo Duel - Larry Hochman [SpongeBob acts natural]
  Menace from the Deep - Robert Cornford [driving test begins]
  Terminal Pursuit (c) - Paul Pritchard ["Freeze, mister!"]
  Martial Links - Sam Fonteyn [SpongeBob's big toe presses the gas pedal]
  Dangerous A - Mladen Franko [the first turn]
  Hello Blues - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [driving montage]
  Sailor's Waltz - Heinz Matschurat [approaching the finish line]
  Dramatic Impact 6 - Ivor Slaney [SpongeBob realizes he's cheating]
  Gator - Steve Belfer [SpongeBob confesses]
  Knuckleduster - The Langhorns [boat out of control]
  Rocket Sled to Oahu - The Mel-Tones [Mrs. Puff inflates again]
  Aloha - Dick Stephen Walter [Mrs. Puff put in ambulance]
  Hawaiian Cocktail - Richard Myhill [SpongeBob walks away sadly]
  Cream Pie - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [ending]



  • As of January 14, 2015, The Internet Movie Database (IMDB) gives this episode a rating of 8.5/10 based on 288 ratings by users.[1] users give this episode a 8.4/10 based on 258 votes.[2]


  • SpongeBob's unicycle appears again in "No Free Rides," "The Great Snail Race," "Choir Boys," "Karate Star" and "Born to Be Wild."
  • This is the first time Mrs. Puff talks is in a deep voice when she is inflated. Second time this happens is in "Sandy's Rocket."
  • This is the first episode to feature the famous running gag of someone yelling out "My leg!" (Fred Rechid), when SpongeBob crashes on the first attempt.
  • This is the first episode that implies that Patrick is an expert at boating; the second being "Driven to Tears."
  • This is the first Boating School episode. The next will be "Hall Monitor."
  • MY LEG: SpongeBob crashes into a lighthouse.
  • The captions says "Man" when someone yelled "My leg!" (Fred), because the character is unseen.
  • This is the first time Fred says "My leg!"
  • When SpongeBob wears a hat to hide an antennae, it resembles the Arby's logo.
  • The assistance that Patrick gave to SpongeBob throughout the boating exam was done by radio communication (as of those walkie-talkies), almost like how assistance is given out to a race car driver by a crew chief or spotter of that driver.
  • A clip of this episode was shown in a Dodge commercial.
  • When SpongeBob eats grass, he moos like a cow. This is the first time SpongeBob makes an animal sound. Second is "Walking Small" when he makes an elephant sound and third is "Little Yellow Book" when he makes a chicken noise.
  • This episode's title card music is the same as "Help Wanted." A different section of the song has been used for the title card of the sister episode, "Naughty Nautical Neighbors."
  • Mrs. Puff inflates and has a deep voice until she gets in the ambulance. That occurs when a boat that she is in crashes, just like how an airbag of an automobile inflates if it crashes.
  • Joe (who earned his driver's license in the episode) is referred to as a customer in the end credits.
  • When SpongeBob wakes up and goes to his calender while talking to Gary, it shows that his driving test was to be taken on Wednesday, March 3. This is actually the real date in 1999 (The same year SpongeBob premiered) so this would mean SpongeBob had to take one of his test on a real date on March 3, 1999, although SpongeBob wasn't 16 yet because he wasn't born until 1986.
  • This episode implies that SpongeBob is able to pass the oral test with ease, but in a future episode, "Boating Buddies," SpongeBob says, "I've never gotten a single answer right on this test."
  • This is the first episode to feature SpongeBob's diary. It will be seen again in the episode "Little Yellow Book."
  • When SpongeBob is entering Mrs. Puff's boating School, before Jimmy Gus stops to talk to SpongeBob, there are two fish in the background taking a test, neither one is Mrs. Puff. This is the first time that it is suggested that Mrs. Puff is not the only teacher at Mrs. Puff's Boating School. The second time is in "No Free Rides" when Mrs. Puff mentions a teacher named "Mrs. Flounder."
  • When SpongeBob says "Gary, I'm not walking," Gary is wearing the same shoes from the episode, "Your Shoe's Untied."


SpongeBob's Missing Window

SpongeBob's house is missing a window.

  • When Fred says "My leg!" lighthouse falls to right side, but the pictures of the scene show the lighthouse falls in left side.
  • When Patrick goes back to his house whining, SpongeBob's house is missing a window.
  • When SpongeBob crashed the first time (floor it) he did not put the boat into drive.
  • When SpongeBob enters his sideroom he uses a slide, but it disappears once he sits down.
  • When SpongeBob is seated in the chair in the side room it is black, but when Patrick sits there it is purple, but it later changes back.
  • The order of obstacles is different than the first view we see when SpongeBob first arrives
  • When SpongeBob was telling Patrick he failed, Gary can be heard saying "Meow." However, he can't be seen nor in the room (SpongeBob's closet).
  • When SpongeBob comes out of the boating school at the end of the episode, he says Gary found his bike; however, it is a unicycle.
  • When SpongeBob cries out that he is cheating, Patrick runs back into his rock. When this happens, you can see that he has his regular shorts on, and not SpongeBob's pants that he was wearing previously.
    • It could possibly be that Patrick took them off, or they fell off before he left.
  • In this episode, SpongeBob's foghorn alarm clock blows in a different, higher-pitched tone. Usually it blows in the key of F, but in this episode it does so in the key of Bb (or A#).
  • When the screen starts to shake before SpongeBob fails, the screen is blurry.


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