Chapter Programs at Golf Courses

The First Tee uses golf to teach youth life lessons and leadership skills. Sessions include a fun, group setting for youth ages 7 to 18 regardless of background or previous experience. Teaming up with experts in positive youth development, The First Tee helps youth become good golfers and even better people.

A Youth Program Unlike Any Other

The First Tee emphasizes Nine Core Values: honesty, integrity, sportsmanship, respect, confidence, responsibility, perseverance, courtesy and judgment. Through golf and our core values, your kids and teens will learn life skills like:
  • Making proper introductions
  • Managing emotions
  • Resolving conflicts
  • Setting up step-by-step goals
  • Planning for the future
  • Appreciating diversity

Advancing through the Program

From age 7 through 18, youth progress through different levels by demonstrating The First Tee Nine Core Values, life and golf skills as well as passing an assessment. All participants regardless of age start at the PLAYer level. The pinnacle of The First Tee is completing Ace.

Class Explanation

TARGET: Children ages 5-7 who are new to golf or the First Tee Program.  In the TARGET level participants will use each letter in TARGET as a golf and life skill lesson.  Participants will be exposed to the driving range, chipping and pitching area and putting.  Fun games using SNAG equipment are also implemented into this level.  There is no testing in the TARGET Level.  Once a participant is able to demonstrate various golf fundamentals as well  as The First Tee Code of Conduct and is 7 years old, a First Tee – Greater Pasadena Coach will give a recommendation to move into the PLAYer level. The First Tee Code of Conduct Respect for myself Respect for others Respect for my surroundings PLAYer:  Children ages 7 and above or participants who have progressed from the TARGET Level.  The PLAYer level is the introductory level of the First Tee Life Skills Experience.  PLAYer teaches participants how to play the game of golf with special emphasis on learning golf and the First Tee Nine Core Values.  These interpersonal and self-management skills will help participants develop much more than their golf game.  Testing is available after a participant is involved in at least 3 full sessions of PLAYer. The Nine Core Values: Respect, Courtesy Responsibility, Honesty, Sportsmanship, Confidence, Judgment, Perseverance, Integrity PAR: First Tee members who are PLAYer Certified.  The PAR level builds on the PLAYer level by introducing PLAYers to the mental side of golf while learning skills that will help them on and off the golf course.  The main focus of the PAR level is to assist PLAYers in acquiring several self-management techniques that will help them manage their thoughts, emotions and behaviors in order to perform at their best on and off the golf course.  Testing is available after a participant is involved in at least 4 full sessions of PAR. The 4 R’s (example of a Par lesson) Replay Relax Ready Redo BIRDIE: First Tee members who are PAR Certified.  Of all the life skills in The First Tee Life Skills Experience, goal-setting is one of the most important.  The BIRDIE class is an adventure in learning. BIRDIE level concepts are complex. It is a process that takes time to master, so we have broken it down into manageable pieces. To be successful as a BIRDIE here are some ASSUMPTIONS:
  1. Golf is your sport
  2. It is probably something you will always like to do
  3. You want to get better
  4. You are serious about it
  5. You are willing to work hard at getting better.
You will learn how to SUCCEED. Not just in golf , but in your life in general. Your will learn about your DREAMS–those pictures in your mind of what things will be like in the future, be it soon or when your are and adult. You will be given the tools to make your dreams come true. You will learn what to do when you encounter and obstacle or road block to your path to realizing your dream(s). You will be asked to play and practice outside of your classes. Some of your classes will be taught on the course which will require you to get out of your comfort zones, which you learned in Par, to fully appreciate the lesson being taught. EAGLE: First Tee members who are BIRDIE Certified.  The EAGLE level is designed for PLAYers who have demonstrated a commitment to both the game of golf and to attaining an associated set of Golf and Life Skills.  The typical EAGLE level PLAYer will demonstrate his/her ability to apply life skills, will have displayed a progression of golf skills acquisition and performance, and have been a role model for the First Tee Code of Conduct and our 9 Core Values and 9 Healthy Habits.  Testing is available after a participant is involved in at least 12 full session of EAGLE plus 12 hours of volunteer time as a junior coach at the TARGET,  PLAYer or Par levels. ACE: First Tee members who are EAGLE Certified.  The ACE level offers advanced instruction and practice in many of the Golf and Life Skills introduced in the PLAYer, PAR, BIRDIE and EAGLE levels.  ACE focuses on personal planning and reinforces interpersonal communication, self-management, goal-setting, self-coaching and resiliency skills that were applied in earlier levels of First Tee Life Skills Curriculum. ACE certification generally requires 2 years and is administered and monitored by a Nationally Recognized The First Tee Coach ONLY. Ask us about scholarships for financial need.

The Power of Relationships

“I consider my coaches at The First Tee to be some of the most important mentors I had growing up.” –alumnus The First Tee coaches are trained to create positive relationships that inspire youth to discover their individual potential. Our programs help young people build confidence, develop respect and appreciate the value of giving back to our community all while learning the lifelong sport of golf.