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Kids in the cockpit
It would never happen these days, due to security concerns, but in the past it was quite a common occurrence for pilots to invite children up to the cockpit. There, the men (invariably) in charge would show the kids how the plane was operated. These very junior flying crew might even be allowed to sit in the pilot's seat and put their hands on the controls.
Alas, such capers are a thing of the past - rarely is anybody but crew allowed into the cockpit these days, and the door is locked while the plane is in the air. Aspiring pilots of any age shouldn't despair, however. You can still get close to the experience by jumping into a simulator - a new one recently opened in the Bluewater shopping centre.