ESL Birthday Vocabulary

English Expressions for Birthdays and Parties

A birthday bash
Listen to the phrase »

A a big party with extra excitement

“We are going to have a huge birthday bash for his 40th birthday.”

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To throw a party for someone
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To have a party in honor of another person

“Tomorrow is my birthday. My friend Sam is going to throw me a party.”

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Goodie bags
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Little bags given to the guests that have candy and treats in them. These are given out at parties for kids.

“What did you get in the goodie bag?”

Party favor
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A little gift given out to guests that attend a celebration

“Sara gave out coffee mugs with a picture of her and her dog a party favor.”

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Party streamers
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A long piece of thin colorful paper that people hang around the house to decorate for a party

“The wind blew down all of the party streamers and one landed on the cake.”

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To be over the hill
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An expression that jokingly means that you are old now

“When I turned 40 my daughter said that I am officially over the hill.”

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RSVP
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This is a request that you write on the invitation asking that people tell you if they are coming to the party or not

“I wrote RSVP on the invitations so we will know how much food to cook.”

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A joint birthday party
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A party that celebrates two people’s birthdays at the same time.

“Since my brother and I were both born in May, we usually have a joint birthday party.”

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To crash a party
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To show up at a party when you were not invited

“I hope your friends don’t decide to crash my party like they did last year. They ate all of the food up and they were rude to the other guests.”

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Sweet 16
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A birthday party for girls that is important because it symbolizes the girl becoming a young woman

“For my daughter’s sweet 16 we are going to give her a new car.”

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Blow out the candles
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The birthday cake served at the party will have lit candles on it. The birthday boy or girl will take a deep breath and blow the flames out.

“Right after I blew out the candles the cake fell on the ground.”

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Gift card
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A credit card that has money on it to be spent at a specific store or restaurant

“My brother got me a gift card to a restaurant downtown. I guess I’ll take my wife there.”

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Gag gift
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A funny gift given to someone as a joke

John’s boss got him a pillow for his birthday because he is always sleeping at his desk. It was a gag gift.

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The birthday boy or girl
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This is an affectionate term for a person who is having a birthday

“Has anyone seen the birthday boy? I want to give him his gift.”

Exercises to Practice These English Expressions:



Worksheets to Practice these ESL Birthday Vocabulary Words:

  • Conversation Activity for Birthday Terms
  • Script for Birthday Conversation Activity
  • Listening Passage for Birthday Vocabulary
  • Reading Passage for Birthday Vocabulary
  • Exercise II for Birthday Expressions
  • Birthday Words Matching Activity