Age-Based Curriculum

First Tee is moving from our current skills-based programs to age-based. Here’s how that will look different to returning participants:

  • We will no longer use levels (Little Duffers, PLAYer, Par, Birdie, Eagle) to determine program placement. Achieving Ace will still remain an important part of our program.
  • Participants will register and be grouped by age (5-7, 7-9, 10-11, 12-13, and 14+), and will progress through the program as they “age up”.

Research & Key Findings

Advantages to age-based programming:

  • Children strongly prefer being with their own age group and to be in class with their friends.
  • Kids learn more from a curriculum designed appropriately based on their cognitive development.
  • Participants are more likely to stay with First Tee longer and engage in the opportunities we provide to older students (leadership opportunities, scholarships).

Benefit to Kids & Families

By delivering our program to participants of the same age range, our goal is to create programs and experiences that are just as fun as they are meaningful, where kids feel excited to grow, safe to fail, and better equipped for whatever comes their way next.


Which session should my participant sign up for?

  • Sign up for whichever class their age falls into at the start of the program session. Classes will be designed to accommodate both new and returning golfers of the same age.

How will current participants transition from their skill levels in to the new age-based levels?

  • Participants will be in classes with their peers playing golf and participating in activity-based learning. The accomplishments of golfers who have achieved certification at previous levels will still be honored, and these participants can reach out for clarification on which classes to sign up for.

Are the core values still part of the curriculum?

  • Yes! The values will still be highlighted in lessons and their positive attributes will be referred to throughout the program. We do not plan to lose the valuable content that is applicable and supportive to positive youth development.