Catalogues Today and Yesterday: Changing Catalogue
Social Studies, History, Language Arts, Art, Information
- Historic catalogues on this site
- Current Sears catalogue (to bring in)
- Other contemporary mail-order catalogues (to bring in)
Ask each student to bring in one or more mail-order catalogues
home, including at least one current Sears catalogue.
Break the class into small groups and perform the following two
- Ask each group to select a historic catalogue from this site. They
the catalogue on the site.
- Using the list of specific features to compare (below), ask students
the design and text of their selected historic catalogue with a current
catalogue or other contemporary catalogue.
Specific features to compare:
- Index of current Sears catalogue
- How have categories changed?
- What categories have disappeared?
- What new categories have appeared?
- Index of specialty catalogues
- What are the categories?
- How does the selection of goods compare to the selection in the
- What words are no longer used?
- What new words are used?
- Make a list of outdated words and their meanings.
- After a reasonable amount of time, lead a class discussion about the
in catalogue design.