Raffi has been around for ages and for good reason, his voice is so mellow and soothing and hissongs have just the right tempo. The song The More We Get Together is a must for both book babies and toddler story times as it helps set the routine and captures their attention.
In terms of getting the kids up and out of their seats Raffi's Shake Your Sillies Out is another proven winner. This song is good for the wiggly little ones who don't necessarily sit still for the duration of a storytime. In the video below, he does a good segue in that he asks the crowd to stand up and do some shaking. That is exactly the way in which I introduce the song during story time. Both these songs are on the cd Singable songs for the very young.
Some of us like to use props such as bean bags in story time as it helps the little ones with developing hand eye coordination and balance. There are a fair few songs out there but I can say without a shadow of a doubt that after I did Beanie Bag Dance a few weeks ago it was as if we had just partied, the energy was just so good. Greg and Steve have many good songs and they even have another beanie bag song but Beanie Bag Dance has the magic that you are looking for in a story time song. It is catchy, it incorporates directions that the kids have to pay attention to and it has a chant for the kids to get say out loud. This song is on the cd Kids in Action.
Finally I used to watch Laurie Berkner on Nick Jr (back when they were Noggin) when my kids were younger and I was always left in awe. Besides being very telegenic she is a fantastic songwriter, my kids are older now but if I put in a Laurie cd when we are in the car I know they will enjoy the songs. We Are The Dinosaurs is perfect for a themed storytime or for when you want the kids to get up and move around. Children love to pretend and dinosaurs are such fun to mimic because you get to stomp and march around. This song also has peaks and valleys which I like. Just a fun song all around.