The most natural way to communicate is by speaking, and this ESL party conversation page has examples of conversations so you can see how native speakers would talk to each other. By looking at the example conversations and doing the tasks you will be able to get better at having English conversations.
This page starts with two example conversations that you can read and look at to see the way the language would be used. They have also been made into two short cartoons that you can watch to get further clues about what is being said. You can refer to the page about ESL party vocabulary if you need any help understanding the words used.
Then in the second part of the page there are three ESL party conversation exercises for you to do. By doing them you will practice using the vocabulary and get experience of forming ESL party conversations. The exercises are:
Situation: Tui is invited to a dinner party. She has never attended one so she asks Lucy for advice.
Tui: I’ve got a dinner invitation. What should I do?
Lucy: Reply to the invitation soon. Did you receive an Evite?
Tui: Yes, I got an electronic card sent by e-mail.
Lucy: Then you just need to click the link on the Evite email to RSVP.
Tui: OK. Then what do I need to prepare?
Lucy: Normally, you should bring a gift for your host. You can bring a bottle of wine or chocolates.
Tui: I think I’ll bring chocolates. What about the dress?
Lucy: Well, it depends on who sent the invitation. If it is a friend or family member, you don’t need to be very formal, but don’t be underdressed.
Tui: I see. Is there a specific etiquette that I need to follow during the dinner?
Lucy: Of course, there is. First, when sitting, unfold your napkin and place it on your knee. When eating, if there are several cutlery sets beside the plate, start at the outside of your cutlery and work in.
Tui: Table manner always makes me nervous. I’m afraid I make mistakes.
Lucy: Don’t worry. If you’re not sure what to do, just have a look to see what the other guests are doing.
Tui: Can I cool food by blowing onto it?
Lucy: No, you can’t. And don’t leave lip-prints on your glass.
Tui: Alright. Anything else?
Lucy: Don’t forget to compliment the food.
Tui: That’s all? Thanks a lot, Lucy!
Lucy: Anytime, Tui.
Situation: Patrick, Jane and Andrew are planning a barbecue party.
Patrick: OK. Let’s start from the place. Where are we going to have the party? Your home, Andrew?
Andrew: Uh, it’s an outdoor party. I don’t have a big garden. What about Sandy’s Restaurant near our campus? It has an outdoor space big enough for a barbecue party.
Patrick: If we hold it in a restaurant, then we have to buy food from the restaurant. That would be expensive. We have a tight budget, you know that.
Andrew: Yeah, I know. Um, what about your home, Jane? I know you just threw a birthday party last week, but if you don’t mind …
Jane: Well, I need to ask my parents first.
Patrick: Thanks, Jane. So the option is your home or Andrew’s. Right, Andrew?
Andrew: Yeah, fine.
Jane: Don’t worry, Andrew. We will help you do the clean-up after the party.
Patrick: And with the preparation, also. It’s OUR party, remember?
Andrew: Thanks, both of you. Glad to know that.
Jane: Next, the time. What day and what time?
Andrew: I think Saturday evening is perfect.
Jane: Yeah. It’s usually 5 to 9 pm. What do you think, Patrick?
Patrick: I agree. Now, the food and drinks. Have you got the lists, Jane?
Jane: Yeah. I’ll read it out for you. For the food, we’ll have barbecue sandwiches, lemon grass chicken thigh, beef burger with fries, and salads. And for the drinks, we’ll have beer and cocktail.
Patrick: Great! What about the music and games, Andrew?
Andrew: I’ve made a playlist with more than a hundred songs. Enough for 5 hours of music. For the games, I’ve prepared darts and lawn bowling.
Patrick: Last thing. The invitations. Have you sent them, Jane?
Jane: I sent them yesterday. Hope our friends will reply soon.
The next part of the page has the three ESL party conversations for you to do so you can practice using the party vocabulary and forming your own conversations.
For the first ESL Party conversation you need to read the following conversation and then decide which option (A-D) for each question is the correct one to fill-in the five blanks. When you have finished you can use the get score button to see the correct answers and how many you got correct.
Situation: Bob and Lucy talks about going to a party.
Bob: Are you __________(1)__________?
Lucy: Sure. Everyone is invited. What’s the matter? You won’t go?
Bob: I don’t know. I don’t really __________(2)__________.
Lucy: Oh, come on. I’m not a very social person either, but I’m excited __________(3)__________. We need a break after going through final exams.
Bob: Well, can I just show up for a while?
Lucy: If you just come for 30 minutes or so, I’m afraid you’ll miss __________(4)__________. Why not stay longer? I’m sure __________(5)__________ the atmosphere and the music. Have you ever tried to chat up people you don’t really know at a party? You could have interesting conversation instead of standing in a corner and observe others.
Bob: I’m not sure if I can do that. Any tips?
Lucy: Um, you should look approachable. Don’t cross your arms. Look open and inviting with a genuine smile.
Bob: What if no one sees me arrive? What should I do?
Lucy: Just walk over to any group. Say hi and ask the group what they have been talking about.
Bob: Easier said than done.
Lucy: Relax! I’ll be in the party early. You can find me and I’ll help you mingle with others.
Bob: Thank you! You’re the best, Lucy.
This second ESL party conversation task is one where you need to write a conversation of your own. You should look at the example conversations above and use them as templates to help you. The conversation can be about anything related to a party. Try to use as much of the party vocabulary as possible and write in full sentences. When you have finished you can try to perform your conversation with a friend so you can get some speaking practice as well.
The third ESL party conversation exercise has two sets of conversation topics that you can use with a friend to have a conversation about parties. One person would take question set A and the other person question set B, and then they take it in turns to ask one of their questions to the other person. When answering you should say as much as possible. Also, if you can think of other questions, ask them as well, as the questions are meant to be prompts to get you talking. When you have finished you can swap the question sets and start again.
The questions have also been made into some conversation cards for you to download by clicking the picture.
For more conversation cards you can download my ‘80 ESL Conversation Cards’ ebook.
Question set A
Question set B