“This is my happy face!” April 3, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza

President Barack Obama’s paternal instincts are on fleek.

He has fathered Sasha and Malia but reigns as "dad" in the eyes of many Americans. Especially children. As part of our monthly series, His Lasting Legacy—a look back at President Barack Obama’s two terms in office— we’re honoring the commander in chief as the first dad.

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POTUS loves the kids, and as evidenced by these photos, kids love POTUS. Here are some of our favorite images of the president of the United States showing his softer side. And the quotes, by the way, are our own.

“On your mark. Get set. Go!” April 4, 2014
Official White House Photo by Pete Souza
“You think you’ve got game? Let’s go!” Oct. 14, 2014
Official White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Say cheese!” May 14, 2014
Official White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Dad, you have to promise not to tell anyone our secret. Pinky swear.” June 29, 2014
Official White House Photo by Pete Souza
“I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!” April 28, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
Priceless. June 23, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Don't make rabbit ears.” Sept. 17, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Take two Tylenol and call me in the morning.” March 4, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Let me teach y'all a little something about swag.” Oct. 14, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Lions and tigers and bears. Oh my!” Oct. 24, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“In a few decades, you could also be president of the United States.” Sept. 15, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“You the man!” Dec. 25, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Of course, I’ll sign your cast.” Sept. 22, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Give me dap!” Dec. 8, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
More babies. The president can’t get enough. Sept. 22, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“I’m the president, but you can call me POTUS.” Sept. 17, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Are you hiding anything in those cheeks?” Sept. 22, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Greetings, little one!” Oct. 24, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“This is how you make history.” Nov. 6, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“A selfie? Why, of course!” Dec. 3, 2014
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“This is my happy face!” April 3, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Listen up, kids, I’m the POTUS. Can you spell that? P-O-T-U-S.” April 5, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
Two’s company. Feb. 12, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
Sunday best! April 5, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
Selfies abound. Jan. 21, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
Free hugs! Jan. 19, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
Obama’s paternal instincts are in full effect. April 16, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Wait for me, guys.” Feb. 5, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Now, this, my friend, is a basketball.” April 29, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“So, what do I have to do to get a cape?” March 23, 2015
White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy
Must. Remain. Focused. April 6, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“That’s my face!” April 8, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Your president is getting old, kids. Can you lend a hand?” April 9, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
The president has got the touch! Jan. 22, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“How much for that tooth?” March 26, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama breaks bread with My Brother’s Keeper mentees. Feb. 27, 2015
White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson
High-fives. July 25, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“What are you laughing at?” Jan. 22, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
Two heads are better than one. July, 17 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“So, what are your retirement plans, Barack? Um … can I call you Barack?” Nov. 21, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Nice pajamas.” Aug. 27, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Are you … the president?” Sept. 4, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Must balance babies. Must balance babies.” June 17, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
The president loves a selfie. Dec. 4, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Dad, I hate it when you cry.” Feb. 23, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
Lifting weights, also known as small children. Oct. 30, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“Wave your hands in the air, and wave ’em like you just don’t care!” Sept. 2, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“And where do you think you’re going?” June 4, 2015
White House Photo by Pete Souza
“I love you, Mr. President! Please don’t go!” May 4, 2016
White House Photo by Pete Souza

Felice León is multimedia editor at The Root.