OLD TOWN, Maine — The seventh-grade music appreciation class at Leonard Middle School has been working on a service-learning project to learn about music and help others at the same time. The class chose to support the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Maine.

Jim Christie of the Make-A-Wish Foundation visited the school to teach the class more about the organization, what it does and how the class could help.

“We decided to write a song that focuses on stars because they are the logo for Make-A-Wish and because wishing on stars represents hope. We talked about the strength and courage it takes to be a child living with a life-threatening disease,” said Shianne Priest, school music director.

The class used the Internet to find quotes and themes about stars that would work well as lyrics to a song. The class asked former Leonard Middle School student Lily Muscatell, a ninth-grader at John Bapst Memorial High school, to write a theme song.

With assistance from the class, Muscatell wrote “Stars that Shine.”

“I wanted to write a song that anyone who is going through a difficult time can relate to,” she said. “The point of the song is that even when dark nights and clouds block the stars, if you can just see beyond the clouds, the stars are still there shinning bright, even if you can’t see them. The song has been strength for me and I only hope it will offer hope to others, especially for young children battling a life-threatening illness.”

Student sound engineers at the New England School of Communication volunteered their time at the school’s recording studio and provided the class a professionally recorded version of the song. Muscatell and the class offered the song to the foundation for promotional use, so the class learned about the process of copyrighting a song. Once the copyright is secured, the song will be given to Make-A-Wish Foundation.

“We want many people to hear the song and think about how they can help or just be inspired by the message,” Priest said.

The class is selling copies of the song on CD for $3 each throughout May. All sales must be made by June 3. Class members will be at businesses in Old Town to sell the CDs. CDs also may be purchased at the Old Town YMCA. At the end of the year, money earned from CD sales will be donated to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

To purchase a CD, contact Shianne Priest at shianne.priest@rsu34.org or call 827-3900.