In 50 short days we will host state champion LifeSmarts teams in Pittsburgh for the 2017 National LifeSmarts Championship. During nationals teams compete at least eight times, engage in academically rigorous competition, and are recognized for high achievement. Students work hard, demonstrate a great breadth of knowledge, and have a lot of fun. Most importantly, everyone in attendance, including students, educators, and volunteer officials, gains new knowledge by participating. Read on to learn more about the various competitions that take place during this four-day national event.
- Competition 1: Before nationals teams will complete a food waste audit, report their data, and answer critical thinking questions.
- Sister team activity: Sister teams compete together in the first activity on site. This activity requires cooperation and problem-solving. The activity changes every year, but last year teams matched 60 numbers with descriptions. Examples included:
- 2.0 = version of the World Wide Web that emphasizes user-generated content
- W-2 = tax statement of earnings
- 20/10 = guideline used to determine personal debt limits
- 140 =maximum number of characters in a single Tweet
- 120/80 = Standard healthy blood pressure
- Speed Smarts (formerly Speed Dating the Experts): In this fun, fast-paced activity, teams move from expert to expert every 5 minutes, solving a problem or answering questions on specific subjects. Activities vary from year to year, but these samples provide a sneak peek. This year teams can expect an emphasis on food waste, sun safety, OTC medicine safety, cybercrime, and finance.
- Individual assessments: Each team member takes a different LifeSmarts topic assessment, and the top-scoring student in each category wins a scholarship for post-secondary education. Questions are multiple choice and short answer.
- Buzzer matches: The heart and soul of the LifeSmarts competition, teams answer team-plus, lightning, and challenge questions in a rapid fire format. Students demonstrate knowledge across all LifeSmarts topics. For example, students might answer questions about credit cards, nutrition, computer viruses, federal agencies, and recycling in succession. Click here to see retired questions.
- Round of 16: Scores are tallied mid-way through the last full day of competition, and the top 16 teams advance to a knock-out bracket. Winning teams continue to advance to the quarterfinals, semifinals, and national finals.
- Last Smartie Standing: Students on teams that finish outside the top 16 compete individually, answering open-ended questions. High-scoring students progress through several rounds of competition until a winner is determined.
If you aren’t joining us this year, make plans to watch the live stream of the semifinals and finals beginning at 9 a.m. Eastern time on Monday, April 24. More information will be posted on the Web site as we get closer!