Grade: Senior

#3800. J. Peterman Descrptive Writing Assignment

Reading/Writing, level: Senior
Posted Sun Jun 18 17:16:08 PDT 2006 by Shelly Leuthold (
Medina High School, Medina, Ohio
Materials Required: J. Peterman catalogue plus a few others (Land's End, J. Crew, Coldwater Creek, etc.)
Activity Time: 2 days
Concepts Taught: Using vivid descriptions, figurative language

J. Peterman Descriptive Writing Assignment

"People want things that are hard to find. Things that have romance, but a factual romance, about them." --J. Peterman

Objective: to help you write using vivid descriptions

Bring in your favorite piece of clothing or jewelry item
Class will get into groups of 3-5 (with my help, of course)
Discuss the packet of well-known catalogues. Use the below questions to help guide your discussion.
1. What differences do you notice about the J. Peterman item descriptions and the item descriptions from the other catalogues?
2. How would these writing techniques improve sales?

Now, in case you did not figure it out, we will be making our own J. Peterman Catalogue. Be thinking of a name for our catalogue, we will have a class decision later! Using your favorite piece of clothing as inspiration, create your own item description using the J. Peterman style.

Descriptions requirements:

1. Shoot for a lengthy paragraph for your description -- Do not forget the order number (No. ____ ). Again, look to J. Peterman for inspiration!
2. You will need a title -- some kind of header
3. Create a price for your item & make sure to mention the sizes & color options
4. All item descriptions should be accompanied by a hand-drawn illustration
5. Put your name in the footer
6. I will entertain the notion of extra credit for someone to design the cover, table of contents, & possibly those artistically talented in helping art challenged JLA students!

I have to give credit to K. Moorman of Riverhead, NY for the idea! Thank you!