I love to read aloud. I love having little kids about to read to but there's no getting away from it; to read aloud well one has to be something of a dork. One's audience is lost if one is too prim & proper. OK, being a dork comes easy for me. I am way past caring what anyone thinks of me at this level because generating a love of language & good books is far too important to worry about one's dignity. Self conscious one can not be.
There are no hard & fast rules when it comes to reading aloud but there are some good general guidlines it is generally wise to follow.
Choose something you like ~ chances are you will be reading it over & over till the book falls to bits.
Read with plenty of expression but don't make it too fancy; chances are ~ yep, you'll have to do it over & over the same way!
Engage your audience. This is why you need to choose books carefully. I look for simple things like repitition or sound effects. This makes it easy to get kiddies to join in & they love it. Books like Where the Wild Things Are are easy to elaborate on. "Show me your claws, give me a terrible roar ~ go on! Is that the best you can do? Gnash your teeth" & if you are very brave let them do their wild dance. Um, yeah, story time can get a bit wild at times.
Lastly, ditch the book. Some stories are great for just telling. My favourite is Greedy Guzzler. I have no idea where the origonal came from but kids love this & it is sooo simple. You need a balloon with a cat's face drawn on it & you begin like this: " Once upon a time there was a very fat cat called Greedy Guzzler who ate fish in a dish, milk in a mug & porridge in a pot but he was still hungry." For each thing you mention you blow up your ballon just a little bit more or get one of the kiddies to do it. I can no longer remember the order of what greedy guzzler ate but it does not matter as you can make up whatever you like & each time you add something the children have to recite the list in order & the balloon gets a little bigger. Finally Greedy Guzzler gobbles up the sun the moon & the stars. (If you have a child who won't scare you can let a child blow away until the balloon bursts or keep a pin in reserve.) Greedy Guzzler bursts & everything falls back into place in reverse order. This is so much fun but like I said, you've got to be something of a dork.