speech and language teaching concepts for There Was an Old Mermaid Who Swallowed a Shark in speech therapy
Frequent Speech Sounds:

/th/ initial
/m/ initial and medial
/d/ initial and final
/sw/ initial
/sh/ initial
/k/ final
/er/ medial
/ar/ medial
/air/ final



Book Details:
Diverse Characters: N/A
Age Recommendation: Early Childhood, Elementary

There Was an Old Mermaid Who Swallowed a Shark

By Lucille Colandro

Scholastic’s bestselling Old Lady is starring in a brand-new adventure series that will make you laugh AND learn! In this new spin-off, the Old Lady turns into an Old Mermaid, travels down into the ocean, and swallows a shark . . . and a squid, and a fish, and an eel, and a crab, and a sea star, and a clam . . . Why? Well, it was fun to cram her mouth with a clam! Two new characters lead the reader through this hilarious adventure while exchanging some awesome facts about the creatures down under for a light take on nonfiction that’s perfect for this age. With expanded sea creature back matter and a search-and-find game at the end, this Old Mermaid is making quite a splash!

This silly ocean book can be used in speech therapy to focus on sequencing, rhyming, and predicting. It is cumulative, which is full of repetitive text and is great for motor based speechDiscover more of the speech and language teaching concepts for using There Was an Old Mermaid Who Swallowed a Shark in speech therapy below: 

Key Teaching Concepts

Narrative Structure:

action sequence
cumulative tale

Narrative Concepts:

subjective pronouns (she)
WH questions (why and who)
phonological awareness​
repetitive text​


order of sea creatures that the old mermaid swallowed


mermaid, squid, propelled, feat, eel, fluorescent, spare, stray, clam, pretend


verbs (action)
verbs (regular past tense)
verbs (irregular past tense)
subjective pronouns (she)
WH questions (why and who)

Text Features:

repetitive text
speech bubbles

Phonological Awareness:



Why so you think swallowed the shark?
What do you think she will swallow next?
What do you think will happen to the old mermaid in the end?

If you are interested in seeing other ocean- themed books to use in therapy, then check out the Themed Key Teaching Points Book List for a printable copy.