Sunderland primary school rock band pen mental health track that's helping others

Two schoolgirls have penned an important track about mental health that’s helping pupils open up about their feelings.

Mental health has become an important topic in schools post-pandemic, with some children experiencing attachment issues and struggling to make friends after such a long period of social isolation.

But the Mill Hill Primary School rock band, Mill Hill Rocks, are helping to break the stigma – whilst also rocking out on stage.

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Band members Amelia Hackett and Molly Tench, both in year five, have penned a mental health track that’s hitting the right note with pupils and encouraging them to talk about their feelings.

Mill Hill Rocks band with music teacher Tony LindstedtMill Hill Rocks band with music teacher Tony Lindstedt
Mill Hill Rocks band with music teacher Tony Lindstedt

Molly said: “Mr Lindstedt, our teacher, said that we need to write a song for mental health week and I came up with the idea of speaking up.”

Amelia said: “We Facetimed each other at night and wrote the words together. We’d love to be in a rock band when we’re older.”

The track has already become popular with their fellow pupils at Mill Hill Primary School in Torphin Hill Drive.

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Molly said: “One of our friends was sad and we told her about the song and she was happy and she told us what her problems are. We love singing in the rock band very much. If me and Amelia get nervous on stage we just look at each other.”

Song wAmelia Hackett, 9 and Molly Tench, 10.Song wAmelia Hackett, 9 and Molly Tench, 10.
Song wAmelia Hackett, 9 and Molly Tench, 10.

Lyrics in the song include:

"If you feel under the weather – tell someone.

“We are all in this together – tell someone.

"Talk with your friends and family and you will know that you are not alone.

"Talk to your friends and family don’t try to do this, do this on your own.”

Headteacher Lindsay Errington said: “Mental health has been a big push in school post Covid and we’ve been working with children’s mental health charity Place2Be to encourage children to talk about their feelings.

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"We’ve been talking to the children about not keeping things inside and the importance of talking. What the band has done is absolutely amazing. They’ve been very well received at their performances and we’re very proud of them.”

Joanne Gibson, assistant head teacher, who also oversees inclusion at the school, said: “When Mr Lindstedt started as music lead he was really passionate about bringing something extra to the school.

"He came up with the idea of starting a school rock band. There was lots of interest and it went from there."

Made up of 13 year five and six pupils, Mill Hill Rocks perform covers with their own instruments, as well as their own tracks, and have already performed at other schools as well as at last year’s Young Achievers Awards, at which they were Highly Commended in the Music and Performing Arts Award.

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Tony Lindstedt, music coordinator at the school, said: “I set the band the challenge of writing a song about mental health and they just ran with it. I’m so impressed with them.

"The confidence they develop on stage definitely has a knock on effect across the curriculum.”

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