Fathering Fundamentals

More engaged dads. Improved futures for kids.

Our aim is to build stronger families and communities by giving men the resources, guidance, and support they need to take on the responsibilities of engaged parenting.

Our research team has defined the Fathering Fundamentals as the core elements of fathering. They’re applicable every-father, to every day.

Explore each fundamental below to further your fathering.

Connecting

 

Everyday moments of connection have just as much value as special events and outings in spending time with your child.

 

Spending time doesn’t have to mean you have to do something special, all it means is you give your child your undivided interest and attention. When spending time with your children, try and reduce these distractions as much as possible so you can stay focused and engaged with your kids.

Within ‘Connecting’, the Fathering Fundamental:

  • Tell them you love them
  • Unconditional love
  • Making time for your kids
  • Tune in and engage
  • Date dates
  • Be there for difficult times

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Communicating

Communication with kids is about talking and really listening. Keeping an open line of communication with your kids means they will be more likely to come to you when there is a problem.

 

Improved communication helps kids feel free and safe to talk to you, and builds a strong parent-child bond. Effective communication is key to creating respect and understanding – now and into the future.

Within ‘Communicating’, the Fathering Fundamental:

  • Communication is key
  • Everyday communication
  • Active listening
  • Open-ended questions
  • Conversations
  • Talking about difficult topics

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Family Values

Family values are the family’s ideas or beliefs about what is important, what is good and what is bad, what is right and what is wrong.

 

Think of your values as your code of conduct, the things you stand by, that direct how you live your life. It is the moral compass to help navigate the world.

Within ‘Family Values, the Fathering Fundamental:

  • Family values
  • Family time
  • Family meetings
  • Family agreements and rules

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Learning

Fathers and father-figures have been shown to have a significant impact on academic achievement as well as the social and emotional wellbeing of children.

 

Family relationships are the biggest influence on your child’s development. When your children feel safe, secure and loved, they are more confident to explore their world, and this is how they learn and develop socially and emotionally.

Within ‘Learning’, the Fathering Fundamental:

  • Play is a game changer
  • A growth mindset
  • Mistakes and learning
  • Parenting with the school
  • Positive attitudes towards school
  • Supporting learning at home
  • Get involved in the school

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Positive Parenting

Positive parenting is about being responsive and recognising what your child needs at a given time and providing that in an effective way.

 

A reoccurring theme in the positive parenting literature is that a warm, yet firm, parenting style is linked to numerous positive child outcomes.

Within ‘Positive Parenting’, the Fathering Fundamental:

  • A positive mindset
  • Resilience
  • Self-esteem
  • Optimism

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Wellbeing

The state of being comfortable, healthy, or happy. Wellbeing is a combination of physical, mental, emotional and social health.

 

Fathers have a powerful impact on the social, emotional and physical well-being of children from infancy to adolescence, with lasting influences into their adult life. Children who have an involved father are more likely to be emotionally secure, be confident to explore their surroundings, and, as they grow older, have better social connections with peers.

Within ‘Wellbeing’, the Fathering Fundamental:

  • What kids need from their dads
  • Family Wellbeing
  • Mental and Emotional Wellbeing
  • Social Wellbeing
  • Physical wellbeing

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Our resources

Our resources are based on our research and years of experience supporting fathers and father-figures to be the best they can be.

Whether you are a dad or a father-figure such as a grandfather, stepfather, uncle, teacher, youth leader or coach – these resources are designed to be your toolkit of tips, information and advice.