BY KATE DENNETT
A children’s TV star is leading new motivational talks and workshops to inspire youngsters to focus on their well-being and get creative.
CBeebies presenter Sid Sloane has launched an inspiring project for children and young people across London.
Sid grew up on the Wimbledon and Wandsworth borders and went to Southmead Primary School.
He returned to the school recently to give his SidTALKS and Healthy Little Steps project.
These breakfast and after-school projects help children see the importance of mental and physical health. SidTALKS are aimed at young people of all ages, whereas Healthy Little Steps focuses on primary school children.
Dulwich Prep School hosted Sid, where he encouraged children to tackle their worries and achieve their goals.
He said: “I do off-the-cuff things with them like give them a little card and ask them what their greatest fear is.
I then collect the cards (they don’t have their names on them) and then I address about five to 10 fears while I’m doing the motivational talk.
“Someone could have a fear of spiders, dying or GCSEs – generally speaking those fears are irrational and are not rooted in anything that is real”.
Sid works to rationalise children’s worries and help them realise their worth and achievements.
Dulwich Prep’s senior deputy head, Sarah Brownstone, said: “Both sections enjoyed your presentations enormously and the boys were excited and engaged by the message you had delivered long after you had left.”
Sid’s visit to Southmead Primary School encouraged the entire project. He said: “Going back to Southmead was actually what kickstarted this whole journey.
“I spoke to my sister 15 years ago and said ‘wouldn’t it be great to go back to the estate that we grew up in?’.
“I’ve gone back to work with these kids now and it is like seeing the gems of the oceans covered up.
Council estates include a lot of forgotten children and I want to work with children who, like the kids I grew up with, weren’t given much of a chance”.
Sid wants to get more involved with deprived areas across South London and help disadvantaged children.
In the future he hopes to go into communities more and show parents how to link up with council services. He hopes to get a ‘Sid bus’ where he can work with children and their parents.
He said: “There was one child who was on the nearly excluded list. By the time he completed the workshops that I facilitated he was moved into top set. I don’t lay claim to that, it is the child who has achieved that”.
Sid is creating an interactive app where children can take their self-care and learning to the next level with more creative activities.
He said: “Creativity underpins everything to do with successful education.
If schools are not providing creative activities or creative input, then there is a good chance that they are failing a lot of their children”.