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There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bell!

There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bell!

by Lucille Colandro Illustrated by Jared D. Lee

It all started when the old lady swallowed a bell, one that jingled and jangled and tickled as well. Soon she’s swallowing velvety bows, gifts to go with the bows, sacks to hold the gifts and so on, right up until she swallows Santa’s sleigh and reindeer! Then she hears a jolly “Ho! Ho! Ho!” — Santa Claus is waiting for a ride! How will she get everything back to Santa in time for Christmas?

Kids will be calling out with excitement, guessing what’s coming next — and, as with the original, the rollicking, repeating rhymes ensure that they will read along!

Series Information

Whether this wacky old lady is eating bats (for Halloween), leaves (in fall), or clovers (for St. Patrick's Day), she's sharing what's special about each holiday or tradition in a fun, fresh way. With just enough suspense, the catchy rhymes in these picture books encourage readers to guess their way toward a satisfying ending. Plus, as the old lady gobbles and gobbles and gobbles, new readers get to experience rhyme, repetition, cause and effect, and sequencing—which can boost fluency and vocabulary skills. No wonder so many kids have an enormous appetite for books starring this lovable lady!

3, 6, 8, 4, 7, 5
Interest Level
Grades PreK - 3
Grade Level Equivalent
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading
Book Type
Cumulative Tale
Number of Pages
Comedy and Humor

About the Author and Illustrator

Lucille Colandro Lucille Colandro is the author of the There Was an Old Lady books. She wrote her first Old Lady book, There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bat, when an editor asked for a Halloween book with a lady who didn't die at the end. Lucille's old lady swallows everything from leaves to pants to snow—always with a funny surprise at the end!
Jared D. Lee Jared Lee is the illustrator for the Black Lagoon series.

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