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Thrown in at the deep end of work; PICKS OF THE DAY.

Editor's pick WHEN I GROW UP (Channel 4, 8pm) Little kids in suits and boardrooms. Hilarious aren't they? Well, that maybe debatable, but whether utilised by advertising folks to sell products, or CG movie The Boss Baby, it seems the media can't get enough of power-dressing ankle-biters.

In the real world, harnessing the power of young minds for the boardroom was the key selling point behind Junior Apprentice. In that spin-off, which aired between 2010 and 2012, a bunch of aspiring teen business folks tried to impress Alan Sugar before the series was mothballed.

That strand may be ready for a catch-up edition, but until that hypothetical project arrives, this new series should pique the interest of business types. And no, it doesn't see a fresh batch of teens hoping to land a small fortune and a work placement.

Instead it examines a more radical idea - what happens when youngsters are seriously dropped in the deep end of the adult job world? Will they sink or swim? Now is the chance to find out as this three-parter follows primary school children who are given jobs that they'd never usually dream of.

With the help of experts in social mobility, the experiment reveals how company bosses have taken an extraordinary leap of faith: letting a group of seven-to nine-year-old children join their business for a week in the hope their brief experience of adulthood will open their eyes to a range of careers.

In the first offering, six kids, who come from all over the country and from a broad range of backgrounds, work at one of Britain's most popular celebrity magazines. During a stint at Hello!, they run a VIP event, stage a photo shoot with musician, DJ and model Myleene Klass, and cover a royal engagement by HRH Charles Prince of Wales and Camilla the Duchess of Cornwall.

So far so glamorous. However, will the youngsters be able to turn these assignments into feature articles ready for publication in time for deadline? (Sorry kids: 'The dog ate my homework,' just won't work in the fierce world of magazine publication).

It's anybody's guess whether the preteens will want to run home screaming to their folks, or rise to the challenge, and maybe even have a life-changing epiphany during their experience.

However, these often funny takeovers will reveal how, in modern Britain, children's ideas of where they sit in the social pecking order are already beginning to be shaped by the age of seven. We also see how rapidly these can be changed through their sudden entry into positions of real power and responsibility in worlds that many of them never knew existed.

"Making the films has been a massive leap of faith for both the bosses, and the children and their parents - none of us knew quite what would happen," explains Executive Producer Nick Hornby.

Other pending assignments include work at an estate agent, and a project which sounds like it was plucked from the pages of a Roald Dahl book: 'employment' at a chocolate factory.

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Publication:Express and Star (Wolverhampton, England)
Date:May 2, 2019
Words:506
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