Getting the Most from Your Reading: Using Kindle Flashcards

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Students have used flashcards for years to learn all kinds of things, from the multiplication tables and Hebrew vocabulary to matching names with faces. But there’s a slightly different reason you should use them to get value from your business books.

People who get the most from reading business books highlight as they go. The Flashcard feature lets you turn your highlights into flashcards that you can use to review. Here are three ways.

Review All Your Highlights

You can turn all your highlights into a deck of flashcards. Then, you can review the flashcards to review the entire book without having to go through it page by page.

I suggest that you create one flashcard deck with all the highlights in order. Then, create a second “all” deck and shuffle it from time to time. That way you can review all your highlights in different ways. That should help your retention.

Reviewing all your highlights is a great way to increase the value you get from a book. But you can get even more value with two more ways to use flashcards.

Make Flashcards of Your Starred Highlights

Kindle lets you star certain highlights, marking them as especially important. I find that my starred highlights are about 20 percent of my total highlights, but they represent the major learning or value that I get out of a book. Make a separate flashcard deck of your starred highlights.

Make Flashcards of Author Summaries

Many business book authors put chapter summaries or action steps or key points at the end of every chapter. You can review those to get a great summary of a book.

I highlight the author summaries or key points in a different color than other highlights. That makes it easy to create a Flashcards deck with just the author summaries. You can do the same thing with these that you do with all your summaries, creating one deck for shuffling and one deck for straight-through review.

Make Reviewing A Habit

If you’ve got Kindle on your phone, you’ve got a readily-available review tool. I try to review part of at least one book every day. This doesn’t take a lot of time, usually around five minutes. Sometimes it triggers an idea I want to put into use right away.

I return to my high-value books in order and review one of my Flashcard decks in each one until I’m done. Then I move onto the next book.

Bottom Line

Kindle Flashcard decks are a great way to review your reading and get more value from it.

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