Darllen Dros Gymru

A group of school children arrive at Aberystwyth Arts Centre for the Books Council's Darllen Dros Gymru challenge

Darllen Dros Gymru (Reading for Wales) is our annual Welsh-language competition for primary school pupils. Through these fun-filled competitions, we encourage children to take an interest in the world of books and strengthen their literacy, interpretation, debating and presenting skills.

The competition creates a buzz around books and by taking part pupils develop long term and positive attitudes towards reading. Reading for pleasure can support the development of empathy and contribute to health and wellbeing development.

Details about the Cystadlaethau Darllen (Reading for Wales) 2021/22 can be seen here.


The competition is…

  • open to pupils in years 3 to 6
  • offers a wide selection of books on its reading list in order to engage a cross-section of pupils
  • provides flexibility for teachers to operate on a whole class level or in MAT groups
  • contributes to the requirements of the Language Charter
  • fits in with the requirements of the Curriculum for Wales
  • offers valuable experiences outside school

As well as being fun, the competitive element of the programme…

  • motivates children of all abilities to read and discuss books
  • gives the children and their schools a chance to win generous prizes.

Competition Details

  • The competition starts at county level
  • Every county in Wales selects one school to represent the county in the National Round
  • Every team chooses ONE book from the list of titles to discuss and ONE different book to present in the form of a promotional advert.
  • Contact your county organiser or cllc.plant@llyfrau.cymru for information on regional arrangements.

The Debating Round:

  • Teams are not expected to have prepared a discussion in advance but every member is expected to answer open questions and respond to the judges’ comments as well as respond to each other’s comments in order to demonstrate a thorough understanding of the book.
  • Choose ONE book from the reading list
  • Maximim of 4 members per team
  • Session lasts up to 8 minutes

The Promotional Performance Round:

  • The main aim of the performance is to promote the book so that it appeal to an audience of children of the same age and encourages them to read a copy.
  • Each team should choose ONE book which is different from the title selected for the debating round.
  • Maximum of 8 members per team.
  • Team members do not need to be the same as those in the debating round.
  • Maximum of 6 minutes per promotional performance
  • Props and costumes are allowed.
  • No PowerPoint presentations or specific lighting requests are allowed.
  • Each performance should begin and end with an empty stage.
  • One mark will be deducted for every 30 seconds over the designated time of 8 minutes.
  • Recorded music can be used but teachers are not allowed to accompany on the stage.
  • 50% of the marks are given for the debating round and 50% for the performance.

Discussion Guidelines

What will the judges be looking for?

  • A thorough knowledge of the books read. 
  • The ability to express opinions clearly and articulately. 
  • A group discussion that agrees or disagrees with the views put forward by others in the team. 
  • The ability to delve deeply into the storylines and characters of the books, wherever possible or appropriate. 
  • The ability to show enjoyment of the book’s successful elements. 
  • The ability to show reasoning through honest and fair expression of opinions. 
  • An equal and balanced contribution by all four members of the team. 
  • References, where appropriate, to general reading outside the confines of the competition. 
  • The ability to discuss characters and their qualities and express opinions about them. 

Guidelines on the Promotional Performance

What will the judges be looking for? 

  • A presentation that captures the tone of the book and encourages the target audience to read the book in question. 
  • A lively presentation with various dramatic effects. 
  • Confident and effective use of the entire stage. 
  • The ability to convey messages and project voices in a loud, clear and confident manner. 
  • Effective movements using all the performance space. 
  • The ability to work as a team and to give each individual a chance to contribute to the presentation. 
  • Effective use of costumes and props, though this is not compulsory. 

Further information

To find out more about how you can be part of this annual competition, please contact wbc.children@books.wales | 01970 624151.