Extension News

Dads Are Critical to Child’s Development


AMES, Iowa -- Dads can teach many life lessons and skills, and these learning experiences are instrumental to every child’s development.


Kristi Cooper, an Iowa State University Extension family life field specialist, states, “If you can ride a bike, drive a car, play a sport, or use a screwdriver, odds are that you learned one or more of those skills from a father figure in your life.”


Research shows that involvement from fathers is critical to children’s development and has a life-long impact. Children who have involved fathers are less likely to live in poverty and are not as prone to engage in risky or dangerous behavior. Children with a father in their lives also show achievement in academics beyond those without an involved dad.


Fatherly involvement positively affects the economic and social wellbeing of communities as well, by providing a healthy environment for developing children.


Check out the “Me & My Dad” website at www.extension.iastate.edu/dads for ways to inform mothers, fathers and others about how to strengthen relationships between dads and kids. The site also has fun features like e-postcards that kids can send to Dad.


Cooper urges everyone, “Do YOUR part to strengthen families!”


Contacts :

Kristi Cooper, ISU Extension Family Life Field Specialist, (319) 377-9839, kcoop@iastate.edu

Laura Sternweis, Extension Communications and Marketing, (515) 294-0775, lsternwe@iastate.edu