We’ve put together a list of our all-time favorite storytime music for you! We’ve included our favorite songs, as well as a few “can’t live without” albums. After storytime, chill out with some of our recommended children’s albums that adults can enjoy too.
Sunflower Storytime’s Top 20 Songs to use in Storytime*
1. Shake My Sillies Out by Raffi
Shake your sillies, clap your crazies, and jump your jiggles out with this one.
2. I Know A Chicken by Laurie Berkner
Get out your shaker eggs and dance along.
3. Jumping and Counting by Jim Gill
Be sure to wear your comfy shoes and have some water nearby – this one is all about jumping.
5. Shakin’ Like a Leafy Tree by the Wiggles
Shake your leaves high and low, shake out your branches, and bend in the breeze. Make sure to try this one out.
7. Snake in the Grass by Mr. Jon and Friends
Oh no…I see a snake! Ruuuun!
8. The Tempo Marches On by Jim Gill
Have everyone stand in a circle and start walking. The music gets faster and faster and faster!
9. Drive the Firetruck by Old Town School of Folk Music
Another one that gets progressively faster, accompanied by fun hand motions.
10. Row, Row, Row Your Boat by Old Town School of Folk Music
A fast-paced version that will have you twisting, bouncing, swaying, wiggling, and tickling your way down the stream.
11. We Are the Dinosaurs by Laurie Berkner
Who doesn’t love pretending to be a marching, stomping dinosaur?
12. The Airplane Song by Laurie Berkner
Get ready to fly (as well as spin, jump, and gallop!) Kids will really need to pay attention to the words with this one.
13. Octopus (Slippery Fish) by Charlotte Diamond
Slippery fish gets eaten by an octopus, who gets eaten by a tuna fish, who gets eaten by a great white shark. Watch this youtube video for the hand motions.
14. All Around the Kitchen by Dan Zanes and Friends
I love dancing in a circle with shaker eggs to this fun tune.
15. The Freeze Dance by Music for Little People Choir
Hop and hop and hop, then STOP! Tippy-toe, tippy-toe, tippy-toe, then STOP! etc.
16. Head, Shoulders, Knees & Toes by The Hit Crew
It’s a classic.
17. The Milkshake Song by Old Town School of Folk Music
“Milkeshake, milkshake, shake it all up!”
18. Do What Spiderman Tells You to Do by the Hit Crew
Along the lines of “Simon Says” except with Spiderman.
19. Popcorn by Mr. Jon and Friends
Pretend to be popcorn while this one plays – lots of jumping and popping!
20. Come Dancing with Me (Blues) by Mr. Eric and Mr. Michael
A fun, bluesy dance number that involves some flying and jumping too.
*This list excludes songs that we’ve already included in our Opening & Closing songs list.
Our Top 4 Storytime Albums
If you are new to storytime, or if you’re only able to purchase a few albums, here are our recommendations. If you start with these four, you’ll have a great variety of actions songs and seasonal music to take you through the whole year!
1. Irrational Anthem by Jim Gill
Really, you can’t go wrong with any Jill Gill album, but this one has a few of my very favorites like Can’t Wait to Celebrate, Jumping and Counting, and Shakin’ Everywhere.
2. H.U.M. (Highly Usable Music, All Year Long!) by Carole Peterson
Wonderful seasonal music to take you through the entire year.
3. The Best of the Laurie Berkner Band by Laurie Berkner
Laurie Berkner has awesome storytime music, and this is the “best of” album. You can’t go wrong.
4. Songs for Wiggleworms by Old Town School of Folk Music
Packed with great storytime music that is easy for adults to listen to as well – a rare combo!
Children’s Albums that Adults Love Too
Songs that are great for storytime tend to be repetitive with clear, simple actions to follow. They aren’t necessarilly ones that you want to listen to over and over again. In light of that, we’ve put together a different type of music list. These might not make perfect storytime songs, but we think the music is pretty darn good.
1. You Are My Sunshine by Elizabeth Mitchell
2. Dragonfly Races by Paul Ellis
3. Nora’s Room by Jessica Harper
4. Through the Woods by The Okee Dokee Brothers
5. A Little Love by Renee and Jeremy
6. Jazz For Kids: Sing, Clap, Wiggle, And Shake by Various Artists
7. Catch the Moon by Elizabeth Mitchell and Lisa Loeb
8. Family Dance by Dan Zanes and Friends
9. On My Way to Dreamland by Kathy Reid-Naiman
10. “Hey You Kids!” by the Jellydots
11. This is Fun! by Caspar Babypants
12. 3’s a Charm by Mista Cookie Jar & the Chocolate Chips