Using a Kindle to improve English

Improve your reading and English with a Kindle


I love reading.  I love to read physical books but also to read electronic books or ebooks.  To read an ebook, you need a device since the words are not printed on paper but designed to be read on an electronic device.  The one I am most familiar with because I use it is the Kindle from Amazon.  Other e-readers may have similar features.

So how can a Kindle help you improve your reading and your English?

When you are reading, you don’t want to stop every time you come to a new word.  You want to continue reading at least until you reach the end of the sentence but even better until you reach the end of the paragraph or longer section.  IF you are seeing too many new words, the material is too high of a level for you at this stage.  The general rule is you want to understand 75% or more of the words.

But back to how a Kindle can help.

When you see a new word while reading the Kindle, you can check to see what it means.  The Kindle has (1) a dictionary; (2) wikipedia access and (3) translation access built-in.  You need wifi to access wikipedia or translations.  

Press the word you don’t know and Kindle will select it and Kindle opens the dictionary to show you the definition. You must download the dictionaries you want to use such as English, Chinese, Spanish, and others but Kindle has free dictionaries available.


The same panel will provide access to wikipedia and translation (you can see the 3 circles showing the different tabs; just scroll to the right). 


You can choose the different languages that you would like Kindle to use for translation.  Hopefully your language is one supported by Kindle.

So this is one way Kindle can help you with both reading and learning English.  There’s no need for you to stop and use a dictionary or online translator.  It’s built in.


A second way is connected to the first.  It is called Vocabulary Builder.  You need to “Turn On” this option in your Kindle Settings.  In Settings you have Reading Options.  Vocabulary Builder is one of those options.  Turn it on.



Now every time you check the meaning of a word (use the dictionary function) on your Kindle, the Kindle stores that word in the Vocabulary Builder.   Now while you are in any book on your Kindle, you can select Vocabulary Builder from the menu at the Top (You will see 3 vertical dots or 3 horizontal lines at the top right corner of your Kindle; select it and Vocabulary Builder will be one option).



When you choose Vocabulary Builder, your Kindle will display a list of every word you have looked up.  It saves them as flashcards. 


You can review the words by selecting one and opening the flashcard or by Choosing Flashcards at the bottom - I suggest this later option. 


It provides you with the Usage - it will show the word as it was used in the book you were reading and also the Dictionary Meaning so you can check to see if you remember the word or not.  If you are sure you know it, you can mark the word as “mastered” or even delete it.  


So this is a few ways using a Kindle to read can help improve both your reading and your English.

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  •       We all admire you here at M.E.C, because you always benefit from every opportunity to make a difference in our life. On behalf of my friends and myself, I would like to thank you a lot. God bless you my friend.

  • oh.. I don't know kindle does that.   I planning to buy one but am still indecisive.   


  • Useful information, thanks for sharing :)))

  • So helpful. Thanks. 

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