What happens when preschool is held in a nursing home?

Motherly talks to the documentary filmmaker who found out.

What happens when preschool is held in a nursing home?

What if preschool met inside of a nursing home?

Would the toddlers revolt? Would the elderly thrive? What sorts of intergenerational exchanges might take place? What kind of tenderness might be shared? And what might we adults learn about how we treat our young—and especially our elderly—in the process?

Documentary filmmaker Evan Briggs wanted to find out. This week, after she published a trailer for the film depicted a year in the life of a preschool-nursing home collaboration, the Internet roared in response.

“It’s really tapping into the fact that we all kind of know on an instinctual level that our relationship to aging and the elderly has been broken for a long time and that’s not a good situation for them—or for us,” Evans told Motherly in an interview.


And the children? Well, they are deeply enriched by the relationships, too. Take a look:

A trailer for ‘Present Perfect,’ the true story shot from 2012-2013 in a Seattle preschool/ area nursing home went viral this week, and with it, the Kickstarter campaign she launched to raise the funds necessary to edit her footage into final form quickly raised (so far) $67,000 dollars.

Evan’s film captures a year in the life of The Intergenerational Learning Center, in which five days a week, the children and residents “come together in a variety of planned activities such as music, dancing, art, lunch, storytelling or just visiting. These activities result in mutual benefits for both generations.“

In one of the more poignant scenes from the clip, an elderly resident tries to understand as a boy, “Max,” explains what his name is. “Mac? Match? Matt? Oh, Max!”

“With neither past nor future in common, the relationships between the children and the residents exist entirely in the present. Despite the difference in their years, their entire sense of time seems more closely aligned,” Evan explains in the Kickstarter campaign. They are, the very young and the very old, more able than the rest of us to be present in the current moment, and thus, to one another.

Evan, herself a mother of two (due “any time!” with her third child), launched her work for ‘Present Perfect’ in 2012 on her own initiative, while working several other jobs as a professor and freelance video producer. Then, as a woman with two children and a grandfather entering a nursing facility during the same time period when she was filming, Evan says she “felt like where I was at a place in my life where I had an appreciate for how fleeting the moments really are.”

She also believes that being a mother was an asset in her filmmaking for ‘Present Perfect,’ as she was more easily able to gain the trust of preschool administrators, parents, and ultimately, the children themselves.

After hearing from so many people from around the world in the last week after they watched the trailer, Evan reflects: “A lot of people have a lot of personal experience with [elderly family members]. We all know that it could be better.”

Joining forces between young and old, Evan says, is a simple, but wonderfully enriching, place to start.

By its very nature, motherhood requires some lifestyle adjustments: Instead of staying up late with friends, you get up early for snuggles with your baby. Instead of spontaneous date nights with your honey, you take afternoon family strolls with your little love. Instead of running out of the house with just your keys and phone, you only leave with a fully loaded diaper bag.

For breastfeeding or pumping mamas, there is an additional layer of consideration around when, how and how much your baby will eat. Thankfully, when it comes to effective solutions for nursing or bottle-feeding your baby, Dr. Brown's puts the considerations of mamas and their babies first with products that help with every step of the process—from comfortably adjusting to nursing your newborn to introducing a bottle to efficiently pumping.

With countless hours spent breastfeeding, pumping and bottle-feeding, the editors at Motherly know the secret to success is having dependable supplies that can help you feed your baby in a way that matches lifestyle.

Here are 9 breastfeeding and pumping products to help you no matter what the day holds.

Customflow™ Double Electric Breast Pump

Dr. Brown's electric pump

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Especially in the early days, feeding your baby can feel like a pretty consuming task. A hands-free pumping bra will help you reclaim some of your precious time while pumping—and all mamas will know just how valuable more time can be!


Manual Breast Pump with SoftShape™ Silicone Shield

Dr. Brown's manual breast pump

If you live a life that sometimes takes you away from electrical outlets (that's most of us!), then you'll absolutely want a manual breast pump in your arsenal. With two pumping modes to promote efficient milk expression and a comfort-fitted shield, a manual pump is simply the most convenient pump to take along and use. Although it may not get as much glory as an electric pump, we really appreciate how quick and easy this manual pump is to use—and how liberating it is not to stress about finding a power supply.


Nipple Shields and Sterilization Case

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There is a bit of a learning curve to breastfeeding—for both mamas and babies. Thankfully, even if there are some physical challenges (like inverted nipples or a baby's tongue tie) or nursing doesn't click right away, silicone nipple shields can be a huge help. With a convenient carry case that can be sterilized in the microwave, you don't have to worry about germs or bacteria either. 🙌


Silicone One-Piece Breast Pump

Dr. Brown's silicone pump

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Breast to Bottle Pump & Store Feeding Set

After a lifetime of nursing from the breast, introducing a bottle can be a bit of a strange experience for babies. Dr. Brown's Options+™ and slow flow bottle nipples were designed with this in mind to make the introduction to bottles smooth and pleasant for parents and babies. As a set that seamlessly works together from pumping to storing milk to bottle feeding, you don't have to stress about having everything you need to keep your baby fed and happy either.


Washable Breast Pads

washable breast pads

Mamas' bodies are amazingly made to help breast milk flow when it's in demand—but occasionally also at other times. Especially as your supply is establishing or your breasts are fuller as the length between feeding sessions increase, it's helpful to use washable nursing pads to prevent breast milk from leaking through your bra.


Breast Milk Storage Bags

Dr. Brown's milk storage bags

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Watch one mama's review of the new Dr. Brown's breastfeeding line here:

This article was sponsored by Dr. Brown's. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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