MYRTLE -- The Couch Lifesmarts team received third place in the state last month in state competition in Jefferson City.
Lifesmarts, the ultimate consumer challenge, is an educational program that develops the consumer and marketplace skills of teen-agers in a fun way and rewards them for their knowledge.
"The program complements any curriculum in high schools and can be used as an activity for classes, groups, clubs and community organizations," said Couch High School FCCLA advisor Teresa Holder.
Holder said the competition is in quiz bowl form for students in grades 9-12.
"They ask questions about personal finance, health and safety, the environment, technology and consumer rights and responsibilities," the advisor said. She said the organizers of the competition said they consider these five areas as key areas of consumer knowledge that teens need to know to function effectively in today's marketplace.
The students competed online first to qualify for the state finals. Eight teams were in the final competition.
Students from the third place Couch team are Darron Combs, Shannon Kelly, Samantha LeBryer, Colin Kelly and Annie Hancock.
Holder said the competition has helped her students develop teamwork skills, self-esteem, verbal communication skills and leadership abilities and have fun at the same time.
"Because of Lifesmarts, students become better decision makers and savvier consumers. It makes them aware of their rights and responsibilities as consumers. It can also teach them how to spot scams. Because many teens begin working during high school, Lifesmarts introduces them to workplace protections, too," she said.
This is the second year a Lifesmarts team from Couch School has participated in the state event. Last year the team came in fourth in the state.