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ACE - Aerospace Connections in Education (an elementary K-6 program)


  • ACE "Boomerang" Character Theme Songperformed by Taylor Road Academy elementary students 
    (words & music by Sonya and Ben Isaacs, performed on Charlotte Ritchie's Closer CD) 

Already an ACE teacher?  Go to the ACE teachers' page

Click HERE for 2014 University Avenue ACES Elementary School's ACE Video! 
Go to ACE Roll Call  to see the 2013-2014 participants and program accolades! 
2014-2015 ACE participants will be added beginning October 1st!
Visit ACE in the News for stories and annual award winner information. 

Aren't a CAP educator member at this time, but wish to be?  With all the great free benefits AND the new free STEM Kit program we will provide to any CAP member who is an educator, the one-time membership fee is well worth it!  Want to know more?  Click HERE to view the AE Membership and STEM Kit informational form.           







Col Brad Lynn, CAP AL Wing Commander, works with Boaz, AL students during
2012-2013 ACE Lift-off

What is the ACE (Aerospace Connections in Education) Program?

The ACE Program is an aerospace education program for elementary teachers (K-6) who are aerospace education members (AEMs) or senior members Civil Air Patrol (CAP).  This program is designed for schools/teachers to implement during the school day; yet many programs are implemented in informal, structured after-school programs.  ACE provides engaging and meaningful cross-curricular aerospace lessons that support science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) initiatives and enrich the school curricula.  Additionally, many lessons promote good character and physical fitness.  We believe this program will help foster good-natured and healthy citizens who will develop an interest in and appreciation for  aerospace as we seek to inspire the aerospace workforce of the next generation.

What FREE materials do I receive if I participate in the ACE Program?

  • A curriculum guide of 21 aerospace-themed, national academic standards-driven lessons for your grade level (Lessons are divided into 9 academic lessons, 6 character lessons, and 6 physical fitness lessons.  Click the "ACE Lesson Descriptions" link in the right yellow box for descriptions of all ACE lessons.)
  • A classroom set of aerospace manipulative items that relate to one of the lessons for each grade level
  • A classroom set of student ACE Program completion certificates
  • An ACE teacher plaque noting successful ACE Program completion

NOTE:  ACE t-shirts for your class can be ordered beginning September 1st by contacting Assistance locating Civil Air Patrol, Air Force Association, or other potential ACE sponsors will be provided.

What organizations sponsor this program?

What are the requirements to participate in this program?

  • Have current membership in Civil Air Patrol as an Aerospace Education Member (AEM) or Senior Member (who is an educator). 
    (In the event that all of the K-6 educators at the school wish to participate, please
    send an email to to receive further information pertaining to membership.)
  • Be a teacher in an elementary school or youth organization setting (homeschools included).
  • Submit an online ACE registration form to participate in CAP's ACE Program.  (Registration details are explained below.)
  • Teach a minimum of 10 of the 21 ACE lessons to your class.
  • Submit an easy online completion form (includes evaluation of the program).

How long does it take to teach each lesson?

The lessons are designed to be 30-45 minutes in length.  We encourage teachers to adapt the lessons as necessary for their unique schedules, resources, and students.  There are additional activity ideas provided for each lesson to enrich and extend each lesson for many additional lessons.

How are students evaluated?

Many lessons include student worksheets and assessment rubrics.  Lesson evaluation methods are listed in each lesson.  A comprehensive program pre- and post-test is included and is encouraged for use.

May others be invited to teach some of the lessons?

The lessons are written in an easy to understand, step-by-step format.  ACE educators are encouraged to invite parents, community leaders, as well as other employees of the school such as the counselor, PE teacher, secretary, custodian, etc. to share a lesson with students.  It is hoped that consideration is given to inviting Civil Air Patrol and/or Air Force Association (AFA) representatives to teach a lesson in your classroom. These professionals are interested in helping educators be successful in promoting STEM subjects and careers to youth nationwide- and, this is a STEM program they wish to help support in their communities.   (To locate a CAP unit or an AFA chapter near you, contact This is a great way to involve parents and other community members in the educational system!

What is the cost of this program?

Although the program is free to K-6 CAP educator members, educators do supply their own lesson materials.  The ACE lessons, however, are designed to use inexpensive, easy to acquire materials, such as construction paper, glue, balloons, straws, etc.   Costs, therefore, are minimal.

What are the registration guidelines for the 2014-2015 school year?

  1. First, make sure you qualify to participate and that you agree to the requirements.  The program is designed for elementary educators in grades K - 6 who will ensure at least 10 of the 21 ACE lessons are taught to their students during the school year.  (For details on program implementation, click the "Teacher Implementation Guidelines" link located in the yellow "Related Resources" column at the right side of this page.) 

  2. Next, you must be a member of CAP in order to register to participate in the ACE Program.  (If you are not currently a member, click here for CAP AEM membership information and to join online.  Please note that as a new aerospace education member of CAP, you will receive a box with many ADDITIONAL aerospace education materials, but these are NOT the ACE Program materials.  CAP's ACE Program materials are mailed after educators register for participation in this extra program for CAP educator members (AEMs or Senior members who are educators). 

    In the event your school wishes to become an entire ACE School (wherein all of the teachers at your school wish to participate), please send an email prior to joining as an AEM  to for further school-wide membership information.

  3. Educators who wish to participate in the 2014-2015 ACE Program should plan to register between September 1st and December 1st using the online registration link in eServices.  (If you are a member of CAP and have never set up your eServices account, go to and click the "first time user" link.)  If you have questions, please send an email to   

What happens after registration?

  • You should receive an ACE registration confirmation email.  (If you do not, please email immediately.  If you do not have an ACE confirmation email, we do not have you listed as a registered participant.)

  • As a member of CAP, you have access to the online ACE curriculum guides located in eServices at  You may immediately go online to review or start using the curriculum.  (Click "AE Downloads and Resources" after logging into eServices.) 

  • ACE materials (hard copy of the curriculum guide and other items) will be mailed a couple of weeks after registration.  NOTE: If you recently became a member of CAP, you will soon receive or have received a box with the additional aerospace education items, such as Aerospace Education Excellence (AEX) books, thematic units, etc.  This box does NOT contain ACE Program materials. The ACE materials will come separately. If you do not receive the ACE curriculum materials within two weeks of ACE registration, contact  

  • Follow the implementation guidelines provided in the ACE curriculum guide (located in eServices until you receive your hard copy, as well as in the "Related Resources" list on the right side of this page).

  • Please consider sending pictures of students engaged in ACE actitivies that we may share in newsletters, articles, or other CAP AE publications.  Usable pictures with a brief explanation should be emailed to, if there is media permission on file at your school for photo usage.  

What happens after program completion?

  • The ACE program completion link will be available in eServices from February to June of each school year.  It takes about 15-20 minutes to complete the online completion form.  Details are available on CAP's ACE teachers' page.  You should receive student ACE certificates and a teacher plaque no later than 3 weeks from the date you submit your completion form.

  • To ensure you receive your plaque and certificates in time for your end-of-year awards programs, make sure you submit your completion form at least 3 weeks prior to needing student ACE certificates to distribute to your class (or no later than June 15).

  • Please email if you have success stories you wish to share, such as improvments in test scores, or a story about how the ACE Program impacted a student, your class, or even you as a teacher. It is important that you try to garner media support for the extra activities you provide to your students.  If you get such media coverage, please send us a link and any photos, etc. to

What happens if I do not complete the program?

Only educators who truly want to participate and are committed to completing the program should register to participate, but we do understand that unexpected issues arise that would preclude one from program completion. 

  • In the event you have an unexpected, adverse situation that prevents you from completing CAP's ACE program, please send an email as soon as possible to  Depending on the nature of your situation and the date CAP is notified, we may be able to assist in such a way that does not preclude you from future participation.  

ACE Program Testimonials:

  • Fantastic program that engaged my students in active learning, and a wonderful way to involve parents and the community in the school.  (6th grade teacher in Jacksonville, FL)
  • My 5th grade ACE students mentor a kindergarten ACE class.  (5th grade teacher in Yuma, AZ)
  • My students had the highest state science test scores in our county.  This validates how aerospace can and does cover state standards. (5th grade teacher Van Buren, OH)
  • The program is very well organized, easy to follow, and age appropriate. (2nd grade teacher in Thousand Oaks, CA)
  • The kids loved the lessons.  The program has been a great addition to our STEM curricululm.  (3rd grade teacher in Anthem, AZ)
  • It brought our school together with a common theme.  (principal in Fort Walton Beach, FL)

ACE Program Accolades:

  • The program reached about 700 educators and 16,000 students in the 2013-2014 school year; thanks to presenting sponsor,  the Air Force Association (AFA), and supporting sponsors: FLIR Systems, Inc., Lightspeed Aviation Foundation, and CAP members.
  • Guest presenters (such as parents, CAP & AFA members, community leaders, aerospace industry workers, etc.) provide students with positive role models and create excellent parent and community involvement opportunities.  It is encouraged that you invite guest speakers and lesson presenters to make this program an awesome opportunity for mentorship and career exploration information for your students.
  • The ACE curriculum has been adopted for use by other organizations working with youth, such as AFA chapters, aerospace museums, youth organizations, DoD STARBASE, and college AFROTC Arnold Air Society and Silver Wings teams, to develop an interest in and appreciation for STEM subjects and careers, thus inspiring the future aerospace workforce and future aviation enthusiasts.  CAP adults and cadets are becoming great supporters of and mentors to the ACE classrooms!
  • Several participants have reported a positive impact on standardized science test scores, such as a 27% increase in 5th grade scientific thinking scores.
  • About 90% of educators who register to participate in CAP's ACE Program complete the program.
  • Of educators who complete CAP's ACE Program, about 90% intend to participate again.
  • Program evaluation reveals that almost 90% of ACE educators agree that the ACE lessons fit well, overall, with the standards, concepts, and skills they are required to teach.
  • Students involved in the ACE pre/post test earn an average increase of 46% improvment in aerospace knowledge.
  • Educators rate program efficacy with an average of 4.8 out of a possible 5.

CAP greatly appreciates organizations and companies who help sponsor the ACE Program:  Civil Air Patrol and the U.S. Air Force, ACE's PRESENTING SPONSOR: the Air Force Association (AFA); and supporting sponsors, FLIR Systems, Inc. ,  Lightspeed Aviation Foundation, and dedicated CAP members.  

****If YOU know of a company or organization that would be interested in becoming an ACE sponsor, please share the organizational sponsorship flyer found by clicking HERE.  We need additional sponsors to provide all the students all of the program components- especially the ACE shirts! 

Please send an email inquiry to if you have any questions.

CAP National Headquarters
105 South Hansell Street
Bldg. 714
Maxwell AFB, AL 36112-6332
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