Super Kids . . . they come from Super Dads. Though it would be nice if children were able to grow on their own and develop into mature adults who contribute to this world, it takes a lot of sweat and effort for this to happen. Good kids don’t just happen . . . they are nurtured by caring, involved, and responsible adults. And for the 8 sessions of Super Dads Super Kids, the focus is on responsible fathers – men who make a conscious choice to be the solid role models kids are longing for and need today.
Responsible Father Involvement
But what do we mean by “responsible father involvement”? It means more than just having a male presence in the family. Responsible father involvement speaks to a man who chooses to show his child closeness, to share his ideas in parenting, to be part of making decisions, to attend activities, to show warmth and interaction, to use his humour graciously, to model purposeful problem solving, and to take part in rough and tumble play. These are the kinds of things that make the biggest difference for children. When a father makes the conscious effort to deepen his relationship with his children lots of amazing things happen. Research is showing that responsible father involvement gives children more hope in their lives, they are more likely to be confident leaders, their risk-taking and risk-management increases, they show more pro-social behaviour, and display a greater ability to regulate their emotions and behaviour (self-regulation). Further, these children tend to be more emotionally stable, experience depression and anxiety less, and to be more active.
Super Dads Super Kids (SDSK) takes a position that when dads and kids are put together, good things happen. And in the spirit of modeling good communication, interaction, and trust, SDSK was developed with continuous input from dads and kids. Through surveys, brainstorms, and discussions (in groups and through email) it was dads and kids who decided the topics that are in the program, the activities they would do together, and even the name. The main goal of SDSK is to deepen the connection and attachment between a father and his child(ren). The statement that summarizes what SDSK is about is: Deep connections come from enjoying your child, knowing your child, and paying attention to who s/he is. As the process evolves, some vital aspects are addressed. Communication, child development, and discipline were the clear first choices of the dads. Other topics, like health and safety, family balance, and understanding emotions were also deemed important for the dads to learn more about. This is a program we can say was designed by dads and kids for dads and kids. It doesn’t make sense to have it any other way.