Celebrating Male Role Models

Father’s Day is June 15 this year and it is a time for families to recognize the dedication and importance of male role models in a child’s life.

There are many ways to celebrate Father’s Day with great dads! But this can also be a time to encourage healthy relationships between children and the other men in their lives.  As educators, we can try to incorporate fathers into our events, curriculum and daily interactions.  Single mothers who work to provide the best growth and development of their children can seek to enroll in organizations, teams and clubs that present their children with much needed support from male leaders. 

Unfortunately, nearly a quarter of the children living in the United States are raised without the presence of a father.  Fatherless households have become part of the norm. Part of the challenge with these households is introducing a support system for children that includes men.  These children are often taught by the disproportionate amount of women in the school system and grow up without positive relationships with men.  The amount of male educators has grown over the years, but there is still a definite need for more.

The presence of men in childcare centers and schools increases the opportunity for kids to form trusting relationships that they may otherwise lack.  In addition to dedicated mothers and female educators, it is evident that male role models offer much-needed support in the most important years of a child’s life.  It is important for children to see that the nurturing and creative qualities of a great educator can be present in both men and women. 

The gender roles in families are constantly changing with our society.  There are less definitive characteristics of child-rearing for mothers and fathers.  Mom can coach baseball and dad can cook dinner each night. But the role of each gender in the development of positive relationships in children is constant.  Trust formed at a young age with adult men and women leads to a greater understanding of equality and self-esteem as adults. Children deserve the presence of positive role models.  Adults should seek to introduce diverse opportunities for children to grow in positive relationships with men as much as they do with women.