Old Lady Leary

Old Lady Leary

Before singing this song, divide the group into 4 and have a different counselor or person lead each section, cuing them for their part.  Sing the first part together, then break it up in order.  Groups 1 & 2 can sing in normal voices, but it’s fun for group 3 to sing their lines in a high pitch and for group 4 to sing their lines in a deep gruff firefighter voice.

Late last night, while we were all in bed.
Old lady Leary left a lantern in the shed
and when the cow kicked it over, she winked her eye and said
“It’ll be a hot time in the old town tonight”
Group 1: Fire! Fire! Fire!
Group 2: Water! Water! Water!
Group 3: Save My Child! Save My Child!
Group 4: Jump, Lady, Jump!


  1. What song does this go to???? Help!!

  2. I don’t know… I only know the tune for this song! Sorry!

  3. Michelle Johnson |

    I am not sure the exact tune of the song but see if this helps ….

    la la lala la lalalalala (basically the spaces are a very short pause)
    old lady leary lit a latern in her shed.

  4. The whole song is here. . .there are a few different ways to sing it. . .

    1) you could just sing the first verse, and be done with it.
    2) you can add each “group” onto the song and sing it 4 or 5 times in a row, adding each time, so that the first time you sing it, you end at fire, then you sing it again and say fire fire fire and water water water, so that at the end you’re saying everything (fire, water, save, and jump).
    3) you can sing it so that for a noun in the line you do an action (bed= tuck your hands under face in a mimic of a pillow, hung up lantern= pretend to hang up a lantern, kicked=kick, wink=wink, hot= fan yourself, fire= explode your hands like fireworks). sing it all the way through first, then the next time instead of singing bed, mimic it and so on. . .
    or come up with your own!

  5. The lyrics are wrong, I always sang “save my children, save my children” and then you scream HUH at the end.

  6. I think perhaps people just learn it differently in different regions 🙂

  7. This is sung to basically the same tune as Bessie Smith’s ‘A hot time in the old town tonight’

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