Jessica Beck
"Director of IELTS Training"
Aubrey Carter
"3 Keys IELTS Certified Coach"

Birthdays and parties are common IELTS topics.

You need high-scoring vocabulary to answer questions about these.

Today we’ll share a model Speaking Part 2 answer about a birthday.

In it, we’ll use the impressive vocabulary we teach today.

We’ll provide feedback for the answer for each score.

#1: You’re as young as you feel

This is a saying, so it’s great to introduce it with, “As they say…”

I know I’m as young as I feel, but I’m starting to feel my age!

You could use this to talk about injuries or health.

These are perfect anytime you refer to issues that get worse as we get older.

#2: Forever a certain age

One person might say, “I’m forever 30.”

Another might choose 25 and say, “I’m forever 25.”

This is common as people get older.

They don’t always want to admit their age.

We often do this in a playful, joking way.

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#3: Age is just a number

This is a great expression to help people feel young.

It means you don’t have to act your age.

As they say, age is just a number so I like to act like a kid!

It’s always a good strategy to highlight a saying like this with, “As they say…”

#4: Belated birthday

Anything that happens late is ‘belated.’

If you miss someone’s birthday, you can wish them a happy belated birthday.

On IELTS Speaking, you can use this vocabulary to describe a birthday you missed.

It is also perfect if you’re talking about someone missing your birthday.

#5: Shindigs and bashes

There are many words for ‘party.’

Because all IELTS students use it, it’s band 6.

Instead call a party a ‘shindig’ or a ‘bash.’

A shindig is a fun party, usually with music and dancing.

A bash is a big blowout.

You can describe a big birthday party as a birthday bash.

Sample Part 2 question

Jessica answers this Part 2 question:

Describe a birthday party you attended that you really enjoyed. 

Notice how Jessica uses ‘per se.’

We recorded an episode about this awhile ago.

We don’t have “birthday parties,” per se.

This means we don’t have typical birthday parties.

Similarly, we’ll say “if you will.”

Jessica used a great slang adjective “nutso.”

  • nutso – crazy, bonkers

Not one right answer

Remember there is never one right answer.

If you’re asked about a birthday party, you can share anything related.

  • Your own party
  • Someone else’s party
  • A party that wasn’t on your actual birthday

It wasn’t a birthday party, per se, but it felt like one!

If you’re answering outside of the box, just explain why!

Since I was a mere…

Jessica uses a very useful expression in her answer.

I’ve known these boys since they were mere babies in a cradle.

This is great idiomatic vocabulary to exaggerate.

You can say what you’ve done since you or someone else were “a mere” baby or child.

In Speaking Part 1, you’ll definitely be asked about your childhood.

They’re trying to give you the opportunity to compare the past to now.

Since I was a mere baby in the cradle, I’ve always laughed a lot.


There’s a good chance you’ll be asked about parties and celebrations on IELTS.

You might be asked to describe a birthday party.

It’s vital that you’re ready with high-scoring vocabulary.

Today’s expressions and party synonyms will help you score 7+ on Vocabulary.

For all the strategies you need, sign up for 3 Keys IELTS!

What questions do you have from today’s episode?

Please leave a comment below.

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