Fraserburgh Academy pupils will be given lessons on alcohol awareness next year.
The new alcohol awareness-training programme is being expanded into 11 secondary schools in Aberdeenshire after a successful trial period in Fife.
The ‘Teach-It Alcohol Awareness’ project, aimed at pupils between 12 and 14, addresses the dangers of irresponsible alcohol consumption and has already proved so successful it could be rolled out to a wider Scottish and UK audience.
Fraserburgh is not the only school that will be getting the project. Schools including Inverurie, Ellon, Mintlaw and Westhill Academies and the Gordon Schools, Huntly have introduced the scheme.
The scheme involves a series of interactive, motivational and confidence-building workshops where pupils explored decision-making, peer pressure, motivation, brain science and emotional intelligence.
Aberdeenshire education officials are also working with the project developers to design a programme that best suits the requirements of each of the schools in the area.
Created by educational classroom resource provider, Do-Be, the teaching resource has been designed to run as part of the school’s existing curriculum while offering teachers the opportunity to tackle the subject as a stand-alone project as well.
Alcohol awareness is woven throughout subjects such as pupil motivation, Identity and decision making, and the ‘Teach-It Alcohol Awareness’ programme uses innovative technologies and web tools to explore alcohol in a relevant and engaging way with systems including Voki, Pixton, Wordle and GoAnimate to bring the learning “alive”.
With funding provided by the world’s leading premium drinks company, Diageo, the pupils involved create a wide variety of work on the subject through comic strips, podcasts, animation, word clouds, posters and presentations.
“This is a unique and innovative approach to an age old problem and it was very encouraging to see the pupils fully involved in a project that will make a difference to their everyday lives,” said Diageo’s Corporate Social Responsibility Manager, Lorraine Martin.
“The young people involved are encouraged to develop the project using the new technology available and there is no doubt they are both engaged and educated through the use of equipment they are all totally comfortable with.”
The success of the Fife project has led to a series of training workshops for Aberdeenshire Schools guidance teachers and similar events are planned for Moray, Dundee, and South Lanarkshire educational authorities over the next two months.
“The project has been hugely successful in Fife with a tremendous reaction from older pupils at the schools involved,” added Lorraine.
“The pupils have also prepared notice boards, information sheets and quizzes for both those participating as well as the teachers and the commitment from all involved has been outstanding.
“I believe that we are in a really exciting place with this project and it has the potential to deliver not only in Scotland, but the UK and further afield,” she added.
The 11 Aberdeenshire Schools involved are: Aboyne Academy; Banff Academy; Ellon Academy; Fraserburgh Academy; Gordon Schools, Huntly; Kemnay Academy; Inverurie Academy; Mackie Academy, Stonehaven; Meldrum Academy; Mintlaw Academy and Westhill Academy.