Exclusive Video Interview: Meet Lucille Colandro

Video Interview About the Old Lady’s Origin Story, the Importance of Building Confident Readers, and Lucille’s Background in Teaching

“Many years ago, I heard a very famous children’s author say that if you read nursery rhymes to babies, those nursery rhymes help children learn to read. And so I try to mimic a nursery rhyme flow.... Teachers have told me that the rhyme and repetition is what really helps their child learn to read!”

Once there was a kind editor…who did a favor for a friend. The There Was an Old Lady series was born!

In this warm and fascinating video interview, Alexia Perkins (a second grade teacher who is featured in this week’s Book Talks video) speaks with Lucille Colandro, author of There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed Some Leaves!, about the origin of her kid-favorite series.

Play the video for your students to learn:

• When Lucille realized that she wanted to become an author (hint: she was a reader and editor first)

• What Lucille loved most about her teaching career (she taught high school students before moving to New York City!)

• How the There Was an Old Lady series started as a favor for a friend…and how Lucille decides what the Old Lady will swallow next

• Lucille’s recommendations for getting into the fall spirit

Do you know another teacher or reader who would enjoy this exclusive interview with Lucille Colandro? Please share on Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #ScholasticBookClubs.


About Lucille Colandro

Lucille Colandro is the author of the There Was an Old Lady series. She began her career in education as a high school English teacher in West Pittston, Pennsylvania. Lucille wrote her first Old Lady book, There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bat!, when an editor asked for a Halloween book that wasn’t too scary for little kids. Since then, Lucille has gone on to write more than 29 books in this bestselling series. The rhyming text, silly stories, and hilarious illustrations have made the Old Lady books a kid-favorite series. Lucille enjoys reading and working in New York City.

Photo credit: Jennifer Beckwith

About Jared Lee

In 1970, after serving two years in the military and working for a year as a greeting card designer, Jared started his freelance career as an illustrator. He is known for illustrating the Black Lagoon series by Mike Thaler and his work has been associated with the US Postal Service, New York Telephone, L.L. Bean, Procter and Gamble, Ralston Purina, Lands’ End, BellSouth, Hasbro, Scholastic, Simon & Schuster, and Dutton Children’s Books, to name just a few. He was also one of the six illustrators chosen to create the first group of Happy Meal boxes for McDonald’s.

Behind the Scenes

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