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My family got our first Amazon Alexa last year, and I’m embarrassed to admit until recently, we only used it to check the weather and to hear fart jokes.
We have an Amazon Show in our kitchen and three Amazon dots throughout our house. Sure we use them to play music, ask questions, and some other basic skills, but we are just now utilize Amazon Alexa skills to make our lives easier.
If you have an Alexa enabled the device in your house, then you must start to experiment with the Amazon Alexa Skills. Just in the past couple of months, we hooked our Alexa devices up to just about everything. I even created an “Intruder Alert” command to activate if someone breaks into our house.
Anyways, I want to share with you my four favorite Amazon Alexa Skills for parents! These Amazon Alexa Skills will make your life easier, and you might have a little fun too!
4 Awesome Amazon Alexa Skills for Parents
If you would rather watch my 4 Favorite Amazon Skills for Parents, I also created a YouTube Video you can watch below.
Amazon Alexa Skill #1 – Intercom
We have four kids, and anytime we try to round them up, we are typically yelling to each other throughout the house.
The reason I figured out how to use Amazon Alexa as an intercom is because I was sitting with my oldest son on the couch and I asked him to get his sister for dinner. He immediately yelled in my ear, “BROOKLYN IT’S TIME FOR DINNER.”
Anyways, to utilize the Amazon Alexa Skill for intercom, you just need multiple Amazon Alexa devices, and you need to know the name for each of them.
As you can see from my Amazon App below, we have three Amazon dots and One Amazon Show. We decided to name our devices based on their location, rather than give them human names like my kids wanted.
Next, you just need to say,
“Alexa, drop in on the basement.”
If someone is in the basement, then you can use your devices to hold a conversation.
This pure Amazon Alexa skill has saved our family lots of screaming and is probably my favorite thing.
Amazon Alexa Skill #2 – Make an Announcement
Since we have children all over the house, sometimes using Amazon Alexa as intercom doesn’t entirely work.
Luckily, Amazon also lets you make an announcement.
To make an announcement, you need multiple Amazon Alexa devices set up on your Amazon Alexa app. That’s it really.
Next, you need to say,
“Alexa, make an announcement.”
Alexa will ask you what do you want the announcement to be. Then you merely tell Alexa, and your servant robot will deliver your message to every Alexa device connected!
If you are a parent, then you can see how easy this makes rounding up the kids for dinner or for school.
Amazon Alexa Skill #3 – Using Amazon Alexa as a Home Phone
Although we have a home phone (at least it’s not rotary), my kids prefer to use Amazon Alexa to call their grandparents or us.
To use Alexa as a home phone, you need to do the following:
- Open up the Amazon Alexa App
- Tap the Setting Tab
- Touch Contacts
- Tap the 3 dots in the right hand corner
- Tap import contacts from your phone
This gives you the ability to make phone calls to most landlines or mobile phones. You can also call Alexa devices from the app on your phone.
When you make a call from an Amazon device, you simply say, “Amazon, call (INSERT CONTACT NAME)”.
Then Amazon will call the associated contact.
If you want to call the Amazon device, then you need to open your app. Once your app is open, you can say, “Alexa, call “Name” dot.” Or you can simply, use the “Drop In” feature to accomplish the same thing.
The only downside to using Amazon Alexa as a home phone is you cannot dial 911 yet. This a big negative if you have kids!
Amazon Alexa Skill #4 – Routines
This is mostly for fun, but routines through Amazon Alexa are amazing.
A routine is merely an “If this happens” then “this happens”command.
For example, if I say “Alexa, I’m home.” Then Alexa does the following:
- Turns the Volume to 8
- Alexa then says, “Welcome home and Thanks for everything you do Travis.”
- Then plays the theme song from Superman.
It is also possible to set up routines based on voice commands, schedules, arrive or leave, and devices.
Personally, I’ve just set up routines based on voice commands so I’ll walk you through how to set up your own routine. This routine will be for dinner.
First, open up your Amazon Alexa device and tap the settings tab. Once your settings are open, tap Routines.
Once you click “When this happens,” tap what type of routine you want to create. In this case, you are touching voice and then enter a phrase you will say.
In this example, I’ll type, “Alexa, it’s dinner time.”
After you type and save the phrase, you’ll need to tap add action. I’m going to use the messaging action.
Then, I’m going to send an Announcement to say, “It’s time for dinner.”
So when I say, “Alexa, it’s dinner time.” Alexa will announce on all the devices in our house, “it’s time for dinner.”
Pretty easy! Now it’s your turn!!!!
Try some of these awesome Amazon Alexa skills and let me know what you think.