Having a loving family is undoubtedly one of the greatest gifts. Hence, celebrating the glory of family and especially parenthood is always a good idea and should be done much more often. There’s always a reason to thank our parents – whether for the endless time they spent patching up scratched knees when we were little, the patience with which they endured us during our adolescent times or the advice they still have regarding all our problems. They have taught us countless invaluable lessons about life, work, relationships, ourselves and much more. With this tough job, it’s a wonder they even have time for anything else.

But luckily, it’s not only our parents who teach us precious life lessons. To make their job a little easier there is countless fictitious parental figures from whom we can all learn something. Meet some of our favourites below.

Atticus Finch (To kill a mockingbird)

To many one of the best on-screen parents in cinematic history, widower Atticus Finch provides the perfect role model and sets standards of manlihood away from the cliché. Absolutely devoted to his kids, he was kind and moral, protective, incredibly patient, firm but fair and always had a story for every occasion. Just one of his many quotes to live by is: “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view – until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.”

Mary Poppins (Mary Poppins)

While she’s not a mother herself, the lessons Mary Poppins taught children and grown-ups alike are still of value today. First of all, she’s an excellent example for how far a positive mindset can get you and how laughter can cure almost everything. Second, she was in many ways one of Disney’s very first feminist icons. She didn’t owe any man an explanation and while being a loving and caring nanny, she sure wasn’t naïve but (unlike many other female screen characters of the time) thought with reason, not emotion. Last but not least, she taught us the valuable lesson to never apologise for who we are but to embrace our own strengths and flaws and be the best possible version of ourselves.

Molly Weasley (Harry Potter)

They might not be the most popular or powerful magicians in Rowling’s wizarding world, but the Weasley parents sure are an acme of model parenthood. Especially Molly is both caring and devoted, firm but yet remarkably even-tempered considering the mess her children are constantly getting into. She also teaches us that it is not wealthiness that enriches life.

Captain Raymond Holt (Brooklyn Nine-Nine)

Captain Holt from US sitcom Brooklyn Nine-Nine might seem like an unusual choice for this list but yet, his spot is well deserved. While he doesn’t have any biological children, the cops of his precinct are childlike enough to need his stoic, fatherly guidance. He sets a great example to show hard work paying off and is, together with his husband, an icon for a happy same-sex marriage in television.

What life lessons have you learnt from your or any other parents (ficticous or not) and when was the last time you thanked them for it?