I’m a busy busy mom. Sometimes I barely have time to gather my thoughts before they’re racing in another direction. Homeschooling four kids is no cake walk, so I take all the shortcuts I can get. This is one of my favorite time-saving life hacks: sending documents to my Kindle devices for easy access!
It’s not a new concept. Kindle has had this feature for years. But I realized recently that a lot of people didn’t know about it when I shared with my Thursday afternoon Bible Study group that they could do it with the new book we were reading (which was in ebook format). They were stunned and excited about this new way to use the popular app. So I thought it would be fun to share that with you guys, with a little walk through, in case you were unaware of this feature.
But first, let’s start with why.
There are many reasons why you might want to send a document to your Kindle app. Here are just a few:
- It is easier to flip through pages than using Google Docs or other similar apps.
- It allows you to highlight and add notes to reference later.
- It’s easier and faster to get the docs on your Kindle (see below for 3 easy ways to do it!)
- TONS of bloggers and other websites offer free ebooks, but who wants to sit and read them on their computer? Instead, you can simply send the file to your Kindle, and it’s available offline, easy to find and reference at any time. And you can organize it into categories, too — (also see below for how to do that!)
- My computer is upstairs in my bedroom and our homeschool room is downstairs — so if I have a document I don’t want to print (because it is a lot of pages), I can just pull it up on my phone and read aloud from there. I can also pull it up on the iPad and have the kids complete an assignment that way. It saves time AND money!
You can Send-to-Kindle far more than just books too! Any file that is in .pdf or .doc format can be emailed to your Kindle. So you can type up a Word document of information that you want to have on hand and send it to yourself. You can copy web pages and do the same. You can even send a webpage to Kindle directly from the Safari browser on iPhone without even leaving the app! (Other phones/browsers may do this too, I only have experience with the one I use.)
I have used it for:
- fiction ebooks
- nonfiction ebooks and workbooks
- homeschool teachers manuals
- homeschool workbooks and textbooks for the kids
- homeschool and other printables for the kids
- children’s books to read in a doctor’s office or to have a bedtime story on vacation
- extra copies of a trip itinerary, tickets, and photos of our passports
- our homeschool co-op schedule and roster
- health/diet-related cheat sheets
- and many other things that I’m probably forgetting!
Once you get it set up, it’s a lot easier than you’d think. Like I said before, if you’re on your phone and you have a doc from the internet, you can send directly to the Kindle app from the browser.
If you have the file on your computer, you can email it, but you need to know your device’s Kindle email to do this.
First, log in to amazon.com. In the menu, click on Your Content & Devices.
Then click the third tab on that page, Settings. Scroll down about 2/3 of the way, and you’ll see Personal Document Settings.
Under this section, you need to check two things:
- See what the email address is for your device(s). Add that email address to your email contacts list. I have mine saved as “Kindle phone” and “Kindle iPad”. Though we have several more devices than that, those are the only two to which I send docs. Also, once it’s in your Kindle account, you can access it from any device.
- See what the approved email is to send docs to your device, and add/delete them if necessary. Your default Amazon email should already be in there, but you may want to add a spouse/trusted friend. Any email listed here that has your device email address can send docs directly to your device.
Now, it’s time to send a document. It’s SO easy, I promise.
Open a new email. To: your device. Attach the file. Send. That’s it! No need for a subject or body.
There is also a third way to get documents on your Kindle devices: you can download the Send to Kindle app on your computer (if your OS supports apps). Once it is set up with your Amazon account, you can simply drag and drop documents onto the app and it will send to your device. Voila!
I love using the Kindle Collections feature to easily sort my books into categories. This makes it easier to browse. I have many categories, like “Favorites”, “Series”, “Classics”, “Kids’ novels”, “Kids’ Picture books”, “Christian growth”, “Devotionals”, “Homeschooling”, “Parenting”, etc. I put all of our school books in one folder, or ‘Collection’, and they are simple to find.
- To create a Collection, click the menu bar (those 3 lines in the top left corner).
- Click Collections.
- Then click the + sign in the top right corner to create a new Collection. Name it.
- Now it will ask you to click all the books/documents you want to add to that collection.
- Later, you can add new books to a Collection by touching the book for a few seconds until a menu pops up, click ‘Add to Collection’, then choose the Collection.
You can also use the search feature to find your document if you remember what it is called.
Tell me, how do YOU use this feature? Have you heard about it before? What do you like/dislike about it?
*This post is not sponsored by Amazon or Kindle in ANY way. I’m just an avid reader and organizing junkie who loves this feature!