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Cadet Program Resources

This page provides a curated list of resources that support all of the components of the cadet program. There is an overwhelming amount of information available to CAP units, so this is our attempt to highlight the most important things.

General Information



  • Learn to Lead (L2L). CAP’s four-phase leadership curriculum for cadets. All of the textbooks are downloadable. These are the books that the online tests are based on. For squadron meetings, CAP offers good supplemental materials for hands-on learning.
    • L2L Curriculum Guide. This is a short handbook for leaders of cadets giving them the “sight picture” of leadership training in the cadet program, and how to use the L2L textbooks and concepts in your instruction.
    • L2L Activity Guide. This guide is filled with hands-on activities that can be done at the squadron level, both on weeknights and at weekend training days.
    • L2L Lessons Plans – Volume I & Volume II. Don’t reinvent the wheel! NHQ puts out solid lesson plans for those wishing to incorporate L2L concepts into classroom activities at squadron meetings.
    • Squadron 24-month training plan. An entire two-year cycle of suggested meeting activities. This is a great resource for an incoming cadet commander to use to plan squadron meeting activity on a quarterly basis.
  • Cadet Staff Handbook. This should be required reading for all new CP senior members and cadet staff members. Explains how to structure a cadet staff in different size squadrons, and what the roles are for each cadet staff position.
  • Leadership Expectations & Feedback. Lays out the philosophy for how we are to evaluate cadets on their development as leaders, including a chart explaining what the expectations are for cadets in each phase of the program.

Aerospace Education

  • CAP Aerospace Textbooks. A listing of all the aerospace textbooks CAP uses, and instructions on how to download them. This includes Aerospace Dimensions for Phase I and II cadets, and The Journey of Flight for Phase III and IV cadets (and senior members).
    • Aerospace Dimensions Leader Guide. An excellent resource for aerospace education officers (AEOs) to help them implement AE in their local units.
    • Aerospace Dimensions Study Guide. A short pamphlet for cadets to help them develop good study skills and to help them absorb and retain the AE material they’re reading.
    • Journey of Flight Teacher’s Guide. An instructional resource for people using Journey of Flight in the classroom. Provides mappings to educational objectives and lesson plan outlines. This is a great resource if a group of senior members are going to study for their Yeager exams together.
  • Aerospace Education Excellence (AEX) program. Hands-on AE activities squadrons can use ro reinforce the self-paced learning in Aerospace Dimensions. You should allow 3-4 weeks for the books to arrive after you order them, so plan accordingly.
  • Model Rocketry Program. An overview of CAP’s rocketry program with links to all of the material needed to run it at the squadron level.

Character & DDR

  • Character Development instructional resources. Online repository of lesson plans for character development sessions that are required as part of the cadet program. Includes not only the Values for Living guides but also member-submitted lessons.
  • Drug Demand Reduction Excellence (DDRx) Guide. An analogous program to AEX, the DDRx program consists of a minimum of six DDR-related activities in a 12-month period. This is an optional program, but is also an easy way to encourage a drug-free lifestyle at your regular squadron meetings.
  • National Character Day. A leadership- and DDR-themed activity day to be held in September of every year.
  • Red Ribbon Leadership Academy. This is an excellent program that can be used to promote drug-free choices in middle schools, to showcase outstanding cadet officers, and to spread the story of CAP in the community. It’s a three-hour workshop run by high-school-aged cadets in a middle school with non-CAP members.


  • Cadet Physical Fitness Program. Information on CAP’s fitness program, including video demonstrations of each of the fitness test components. Remember that CAP’s fitness program is about more than just the test; we should be promoting a healthy lifestyle, of which the tests are merely one part.
  • Fitness Challenge. This is a great program whereby the squadron can set fitness goals for its cadets, and then in May and/or November, conduct a CPFT and try to have certain percentages of cadets achieve high scores in their tests. Great incentive to get cadets to exercise at places other than the squadron meeting.
  • Couch-to-5K (also available as a PDF chart). A simple training program to get going. A lot of cadets struggle with the mile run, and this 3x/week run/walk regimen is a great way to help. You don’t need to download the app or pay money for it, you can just use the free PDF chart and follow along.
  • Bodyweight exercise regimen. Another simple exercise program to build strength. Useful for cadets who pay struggle with the push-ups or curl-ups. This program won’t make you a bodybuilder, but it will help with basic fitness and doesn’t require fancy equipment or a gym membership.

Senior Member Information

  • Training Leaders of Cadets. This excellent two-day course prepares senior members to work in cadet programs at the squadron level. Contact your Wing Director of Cadet Programs for information on courses near you.
  • Cadet Programs Specialty Track Guide. This guide describes what senior members have to do to earn ratings in the Cadet Programs specialty track. It should be one of the first places a new senior member looks for information on their CAP duty assignment.
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