The scene is I'm instructing my 8-yr-old daughter to take out the text-books and notebooks as per her time table for any day.

It's clear that I can say -

Rhyme, take out the books as per your time-table.

But then, is there any shorter way? Take out your time-table? or Put your subjects for tomorrow sounds improper.

  • @snailboat. For instance, I instruct her Monday night that she should take the books out according to her time table of Tuesday. It's just preparing for the early morning so that she does not have to rush.
    – Maulik V
    Commented Dec 17, 2013 at 11:36
  • The next day is secondary. My main question is how do I instruct/tell her in short/proper way to take out the books as per (whatever) day's timetable.
    – Maulik V
    Commented Dec 17, 2013 at 11:38
  • @snailboat. I removed the day so it's clear now.
    – Maulik V
    Commented Dec 17, 2013 at 11:44
  • @MaulikV I'm not sure, but to me take out the books will need from where and to where. Perhaps it's all right if the context is clear. I might personally say, why don't you prepare your books for tomorrow?. If you want to tell her to bring the books from her bookshelf, I believe you could say bring your books for tomorrow (or tomorrow's timetable) here. (So that you can check if she can bring out the right books.) Commented Dec 17, 2013 at 11:52

3 Answers 3


It’s not quite clear what you mean by taking books out ‘as per’ a timetable. Taken literally, it would mean “Take out your books at the time or times your timetable calls for you to do so”; since you appear to be issuing a current rather than a prospective command, that time would be now. If that is the case, this might be expressed

Rhyme, it’s time to get your books out.

Your original reference to ‘tomorrow’, however, make it more likely that what you mean is “Take out your books and set them in the order in which your timetable says you will need them”. If that is the case, you may say exactly that the first time you are instructing her; thereafter, when she has learned the drill, you may say

Rhyme, get your books ready [for tomorrow].

In any case, avoid the phrase as per. It’s a fossil from 19th century commercial English, and although it survives (regrettably) in some business contexts it is not used either in conversation or in formal writing. It is certainly far too pompous and stuffy an expression to be used with children, except in jest.

  • Yes, I did mean what you covered in second part of your answer. It is taking out the subjects and their notebooks as mentioned in her timetable. She has science period on Monday but not on Tuesday. This is an example though.
    – Maulik V
    Commented Dec 17, 2013 at 13:53
  • Chose this for thereafter
    – Maulik V
    Commented Dec 18, 2013 at 3:54

We rarely refer to a school schedule as a "time-table". The word "time-table" is most often used to refer to the schedule of trains or airplanes, or of an organized project. For schools we generally talk about a "school schedule" or "class schedule". (I'm speaking as an American here. Maybe this is different in other English-speaking countries.)

As StoneyB says, it's not quite clear from your question whether you mean the books she needs, the books she will need at some specific time, or all the books she will need over an extended period of time.

Conventional phrases would be: "Get out the books you need now." "Get out the books you will need for tomorrow." "Get out all the books you will need next week." Or maybe, "Arrange your books so that you can find the ones you will need for each class" or something of that sort, if that's what you mean.

  • 1
    You are correct that timetable (one word for me, not hyphenated) is used differently in other countries. In the UK, timetable is absolutely the normal word for the daily sequence of school classes. Schedule has a more 'commercial business diary' (and American!) feel to it. Not to mention the sk- versus sh- pronunciation difference between the US and UK.
    – toandfro
    Commented Dec 17, 2013 at 19:27

I'd probably just ask her

Do you have your books [ready] for tomorrow?

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