Debi Pillarella, M.Ed. by Debi Pillarella, M.Ed.

Promoting youth fitness in schools through physical education and activity has been more difficult in recent years due to an increasing number of budgetary constraints. In an effort to help educators integrate health and fitness into classroom learning, ACE offers age-appropriate curriculum for children in grades 3-5 and grades 6-8. Aimed at teaching students about the dangers of being overweight and the importance of a healthy lifestyle, our FREE Operation FitKids® information is offered as a public service by ACE.

Free Operation FitKids Curriculum

It's no secret that poor nutrition and inactivity are putting today's youth at risk of developing life-threatening diseases as they age. According to the American Heart Association, about 1 in 3 children (ages 2-19) are overweight (at or above the 85th percentile of Body Mass Index) and about 1 in 6 are obese (at or above the 95th percentile of Body Mass Index).

Children should be learning about the extreme dangers of being overweight and obese as well as engaging in daily fitness-based activities. What better way to do this than to integrate it into the daily curriculum. The American Council on Exercise® is serious about its initiative to reach out to today’s youth. This seven-lesson, free, online Operation FitKids® curriculum is available for both the 3rd to 5th grade classroom level, as well as the 6th to 8th grade level. Although the lessons and their activities are presented in an independent fashion, you can integrate the lesson concepts into your existing curricula.

Free Youth Fitness Curriculum: Grades 3 - 5

  • Introduction to the Curriculum
    Letter from Cedric X. Bryant, Ph.D, FACSM
    Ways to Use the Curriculum

  • Lesson 1: Move & Groove As You Eat To Win
    Fitness - Understand the Kid's Activity Pyramid
    Nutrition - Understand the MyPlate Guidance Plan

  • Lesson 2: Help Smart Kids on the Liquid Lookout
    Fitness - Explain the importance of our hearts and the youth RPE scale
    Nutrition - Identify what to drink for healthy and proper hydration

  • Lesson 3: Walk This Way/Snack Attack
    Fitness - Know your steps and safe walking techniques
    Nutrition - Identify healthy snack choices

  • Lesson 4: Pump It Up/How Much to Eat
    Fitness - Explain the importance of strength exercises
    Nutrition - Explain a food label and its components

  • Lesson 5: Toughen Up/Cut the Fat
    Fitness - Demonstrate muscle-strengthening exercises
    Nutrition - List ways to reduce fat and calories in fast-food meals

  • Lesson 6: Chill Out/Breakfast...Don't Skip It
    Fitness - Explain the benefits of stretching
    Nutrition - Understand the importance of eating breakfast

  • Lesson 7: Putting It All Together
    Fitness - Put lessons 1-6 together to achieve a healthy, active lifestyle
    Nutrition - Put lessons 1-6 together to achieve healthy eating habits


Free Youth Fitness Curriculum: Grades 6 - 8

  • Introduction to the Curriculum
    Letter from Cedric X. Bryant, Ph.D, FACSM
    Ways to Use the Curriculum

  • Lesson 1:
    Fitness - Rev It Up...Warm-Ups
    Nutrition - MyPlate...The Foundation of Healthy Eating for Life

  • Lesson 2:
    Fitness - Cardio Power...One Step at a Time
    Nutrition - Size Wise...ABC's of a Serving

  • Lesson 3:
    Fitness - Muscle Up...Being a Lean Machine
    Nutrition - Label Reading 101

  • Lesson 4:
    Fitness - Chill Out
    Nutrition - Liquid Lookout

  • Lesson 5:
    Fitness - Circuit Circus...Making Fitness Fun
    Nutrition - Fill Up with Fiber

  • Lesson 6:
    Fitness - Fitness Adventure...A Virtual Fitness Experience
    Nutrition - Snack Attack

  • Lesson 7:
    Fitness - Put It All Together
    Nutrition - Eating Extravaganza...A Healthy Tasty Treat


Creating Connections: Speaker's
Academy for Fitness Professionals