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Fischy Music

27 March 2014

Primary school children from North Edinburgh have been helped through the daunting transition to high school by taking part in a song writing project facilitated by Fischy Music and funded by a grant from the Deutsche Bank Small Grants Fund.

Established in 1998, Fischy Music supports the emotional, social and spiritual health and wellbeing in children through songs.

In June 2013, more than sixty P7 pupils from Pirniehall Primary School and St David’s RC Primary School participated in a series of transition theme workshops led by Fischy Music musicians where they wrote, recorded and performed a song with a particular focus on moving to high school.

Leaving primary school can be a distressing time for youngsters, and so the charity worked with them to try to increase their confidence and self esteem, before they began the transition to high school.

This project was a great fit with the objectives of the Deutsche Bank Small Grants Fund in that it provides educational support and opportunities for young people and helps them to develop essential life skills.

Pupils were encouraged to discuss the various and complex emotions they may experience during times of change, and what they could do to express and manage these feelings.

At the end of the programme, pupils from both schools showcased their endeavour and performed the songs they had written at a celebratory concert which was attended by pupils and staff from local primary and secondary schools.

Fischy Music’s Helen Kibby said, “Music is a great way to encourage children to express themselves with confidence. Through song writing, children are able to communicate feelings and emotions that they might otherwise not want to talk about.”

She continued, “In their workshops, children were able to express their emotions, and reflect on their feelings about moving to high school. They wrote about feeling anxious at the prospect of leaving behind old friends and making new ones. However, by working together and listening to each other, they soon realised that they were not alone, and that other children had similar worries.

“Song writing and performing gave them the confidence to look forward to high school. They started to believe in their own lyrics ‘Don’t worry it will probably be alright. It will be a blast’.”

Head Teacher of Pirniehall Primary School, Mary Gillespie said, "What Fischy Music brings to children and staff is quite special. It has that really inspirational edge and has helped to enhance pupils’ confidence and self esteem. They now feel more able to take on new challenges and embrace change.”

One pupil said “I’m not so scared of high school anymore”; another said “we all had fun and enjoyed working with Fischy Music…we wrote the best song in the world!”

Deutsche Bank launched its youth engagement programme, Born to Be, last year - aiming to support 160,000 by 2017 with the opportunities they need to succeed in life. Since 2006, the Deutsche Bank Small Grants Fund has distributed over £750,000 to local groups.

For more information on Born to Be, visit db.com/borntobe.

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