PLYMOUTH, Minnesota — This Father’s Day, June 16, families will gather for parties and picnics to honor the special men in their lives. 

It’s also a great time to give some serious thought to what fathers today contribute to their children’s development and learning. 

And as many men become much more involved in the hands-on care of their children than dads of previous generations, recent studies highlight the benefits kids reap when their fathers are actively engaged in their everyday lives.

Twin Cities developmental psychologist Dr. Marti Erickson, host of the weekly podcast Mom Enough says, “Even if the father doesn’t live with his child, his ongoing active involvement has significant benefits.” 

Benefits of father involvement for kids:

  • Social-emotional benefits like greater empathy, kindness, self-regulation
  • Confidence, curiosity, willingness to try new things
  • Better cognitive development and academic performance
  • Fewer behavior problems, including delinquency and substance abuse 

If the father cannot be involved, uncles, grandpas and other caring males all make a difference, too!