6 Things Every Dad Should Teach His Sons


dad and son cloud

I remember watching my son hit his brother for the first time. I remember thinking to myself, “Where did he learn that?” My sister-in-law spent a great deal of effort trying to keep toy guns and weapons out of the hands of her sons. But one evening, when they were visiting her family, her two sons burst into the room, holding Barbie dolls by the head, upside down, using them as swords.

Some things just come naturally to boys. These types of things just seem to be built-in; however, other, and quite frankly, more important things are not. Some things take a little more parental effort to instill in our sons. For these things, they have a dad to teach them.

The next few slides will show you what I think a dad should be teaching his son(s).


Adorable brother and sister eating from speghetti mess on floor over white.

How to Cook Spaghetti:

A dad should teach his sons how to be self-reliant and be able to cook, clean, and do other daily duties. I picked spaghetti because it’s a relatively simple and inexpensive meal that packs a little more nutrition than spam or Ramen noodles. Too many boys leave home without being able to cook a decent meal, clean up after themselves, or manage themselves and their money. Self-reliance doesn’t mean that they never need help, it just means that they can rely on themselves for regular needs.


How to Build a Fort:

My sons know that I have a hard time with tools and building things. Last summer, we built a fort together out of scraps of wood. I made many mistakes, and it took much longer than it should have, but we finished. My boys loved it, and they were so proud of themselves for building it. It may not be building a fort for you and your son(s), but the sentiment is to teach them to do something that is hard and to persevere even though it is difficult.

Boy Holding Dad's hand


How to Make Good Decisions:

I think that men (even more than women) need to learn to allow themselves time to think and make decisions wisely rather than letting others choose for them. Teach them to let virtues and values, not money, hormones, or self-interest, dictate their choices

happy little boy hugging her mother; closeup

How to Hug Their Mom:

Fathers need to teach their sons to value their mother and women in general. Teach them to never objectify women and to treat them with respect and honor. Sons that have dads that treat their mom well will become husbands that treat their wives well.


How to Rock, Change, and Feed a Baby:

Dads should teach their sons to be servant leaders. Teach them to plan on doing more for others than others do for them. Teach them to enjoy and appreciate the happiness that comes from helping others. Caring for a baby is a great opportunity because babies do not have the capacity to give back the way in which people have come to expect; however, there is an unmistakable joy that comes from it.

baby boy playing

How to Dig a Hole, and Then Play with Cars in That Hole:

Sons, more than ever, need to learn the value of work and how to work hard. They need to learn how to work hard but to realize that there is more to life than work. Sometimes, even play takes hard work. Getting better at a sport or an instrument takes time and effort, but we do it because we love it. Enjoy life and take pride in the work you do. Wear yourself out with hard work, and then play until you collapse from exhaustion.

In no way is this list exhaustive, but it is some of the essentials that I feel a father should not allow a son to leave home without.

What do you think are some of the essentials that dads should teach their sons?

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What do you think?

6 Things Every Dad Should Teach His Sons

Tell us what you think!


  1. susan says:

    aww. I love the hug their mom and dig a hole to play cars in.!

  2. Angela says:

    I will be teaching my sons these virtues. I’m not sure why it has to be a man. I tore apart a motor and put it back together, I built my son’s play set. Yes it is great to have male role models for boys, i’m not denying that. I’m just stating that there are many moms who do it all. This article made it seem like a female can’t teach these lessons.

    • susan says:

      totally agree with you.

    • Season says:

      I don’t know if it’s that, so much as this being there for new dads who need some reassurance as to what to impart to their sons. my hubby, for instance, is very excited about being a father; but nervous about ‘doing it right’ as his father was not such a great guy. for him, reading stuff like this is a comforting confirmation that his instincts are okay. That’s what i take away from these, at any rate.

    • Megan Klay says:

      Hi Angela – Thank you for your feedback! Women can absolutely teach these lessons to their sons as well. This article was written by a dad, for dads, as they’re part of our audience too. But, the lessons are still important and are the same no matter who will be teaching them! 🙂

      • Lara says:

        I agree with Angela. There are already not enough articles on any baby sites for single moms (and a lot of the content is very painful for single expecting moms)… It is pretty undermining to come across articles like this. I think you might want to put some consideration into this group of women who are also accessing your site, or at least filter the newsletters which feed us this sort of information.

  3. Eva says:

    I absolutely love everything about this article!!

  4. very nice article 🙂

  5. LIZ says:

    nice info tnx so much

  6. Jesse says:

    sounds fun to build a fort

  7. Jesse says:

    cooking is great I wall show my son as soon as he is old enough.

  8. kim says:

    ive learn alot from this and i believe that both girls and boys should learn these things

  9. John Haley says:

    I have gotten so much out of this website! Thank you!

  10. I agree with all of these as well as teaching them to manage money and plan for the future.

  11. Jennifer says:

    I think all six is true. I also think they need to know about the money management.

  12. damion says:

    Money management

  13. Timothy says:

    we are having a girl this time

  14. Anne says:

    i know that my nephew, zackary, loves his mom to death and will do anything for her!
    that’s the way it SHOULDbe …HIS dad says that respecting women is the most important thing in the world!

  15. jesster131 says:

    My nephew does not have a dad in his life. He does have 2 uncles & 2 older cousins teaching him.

  16. KITTYNOLAND says:

    My husband said that our sons will learn how to treat women with chivalry and to have the utmost respect for their seniors/women/disabled. They should learn how to converse on most topics. To have manners and be polite.


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