Parents add a new string to their bow

Bede Academy Primary violin taster sessions, L-R Gillian Fletcher, 40, seven-year-old Lauren Fletcher, Maureen Wessells, 60, Luke Conolly, aged six.
Bede Academy Primary violin taster sessions, L-R Gillian Fletcher, 40, seven-year-old Lauren Fletcher, Maureen Wessells, 60, Luke Conolly, aged six.
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PARENTS and grandparents are joining youngsters in a musical journey.

Students at Bede Academy Primary in Blyth welcomed mothers, fathers, grandmothers and grandfathers for a series of family learning sessions on how to play the violin.

Bede music teacher Ian Hennerby said: “We currently have 90 Year 2 pupil learning to play the violin.

“At a concert held in school many of the parents mentioned to me that they too would like to learn to play an instrument so we decided to hold some taster sessions where parents could learn alongside their children.

“I’m absolutely thrilled at the numbers.

“So far we have held two sessions and already more than 40 family members have taken part, so I am hopeful we will be able to continue the classes on a regular basis.”

The students, aged six to seven, who have all been given violins on loan by the school, also receive regular tuition from Bede violin teacher Rebecca Poulton and music teacher Rosie Walton from The Sage Gateshead.

“We have been teaching the children the basics of violin playing through learning game techniques which work really well for beginners,” said Rosie.

“Using colour codes for the strings and learning songs to help them to remember high and low notes are a great way to gain young children’s interest.”

Gillian Fletcher, 40, whose seven-year-old daughter Lauren attends Bede, said: “Lauren’s older brother Dylan learned to play the violin last year and when Lauren said that she would like to learn I though I would give it a go too.

“I wasn’t given the chance to play an instrument at school, other than the recorder, so I think it’s a great idea for the school to encourage parents to come along and learn with their children.”

Maureen Wessells, 60, of Blyth, whose grandson Luke Conolly, six, is learning to play, said: “I’ve never played an instrument before but if it is as enjoyable as it has been today I’d love to come to more sessions.”