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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — It’s a dilemma parents across the country are facing: How to become your child’s new full-time educator.

One Wisconsin mom of four documented their first week at home, and she shares some hacks, and hope, for the coming weeks.

There’s an uncertainty in the air as parents and kids navigate through the ups and the downs of life at home.

Erin, Wisconsin resident Kristin Patey is a mother to four girls: Lily, 11, Nora, 9, Evelyn, 9, and Sidney, 5. Kristin is a stay-at-home mom and documented her new gig on video as a K-5 educator.

“Definitely a full-time job for me, just to help with the at-home learning,” Kristin said.

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All that learning took some major time and some major bandwidth, especially with her husband also working at home.

“From a technology perspective, we also had to upgrade our modem, because with six people all trying to do different kinds of work online,” Kristin said.

She says she’s had to be patient, understanding her kids’ teachers can’t respond right away, nor can she.

“With four kids all at home, all different things at once, they were all calling on me at once,” Kristin said.

That’s why she says recess, whether indoor or outdoor, serves a dual purpose.

(credit: CBS)

“It is key, not just for them, to wear off some of that energy and get some fresh air, but it’s key for me as well,” she said.

And time she says is the greatest thing about this unplanned staycation.

“It’s real quality time, and we don’t feel the pull, you know, that we normally would that takes away from that,” she said.

They are having family game-time, concerts and pedicure parties. But it hasn’t been perfect.

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“There’s some arguing that happened, people getting in each other’s faces,” she said.

But they’re all learning a new way to live in harmony.

Kristin says as for a schedule, she’s sticking to a 9 a.m. start time, but she’s flexible with the rest of the schedule, saying if they are in a learning groove, she lets them keep going.

Kristin is the sister of one of our WCCO team members.

Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield

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