I love going to parties. And in fact it doesn’t matter to me what the occasion is, whether it’s a housewarming party, a farewell (= goodbye) party or even a fancy dress party (= for which you get dressed like someone else). I’ve also been to a few stag nights (= party for a man who is getting married) and I must admit that was great fun!
I’m definitely a party animal (= party lover); actually I’ve heard some people calling me the life and soul of the party. And I hope it’s true – I really love entertaining people (= make people enjoy themselves) and I’m usually the one to start dancing or suggest playing some party games.
The last time I had a whale of a time (= had a lot of fun) was at a New Year’s party that my friends threw (= gave/organized). We spent the whole night celebrating. That party had all the ingredients that a good party should have: a nice place, music suited to (= right for) the tastes of the guests, plenty of food and drink and last but not least, the right mix of people (= a combination of different types of people). That was a party we’ll be talking about for months to come. And the next day I really enjoyed a quiet evening at home on my own (= alone).


More contexts for the new words:


Nobody likes inviting Paul to parties – he is such a party pooper!
(= someone who doesn’t like parties and spoils other people’s enjoyment of these)


The sinking ship sent SOS (= save our souls) signals in the hope of being rescued.
(= a radio signal used for calling help, especially by a ship or plane)


Unlike my brother, who just loves discussing politics, I’m not a political animal.
(= someone who is extremely interested in politics)



Decide if the sentences below are true of false. Correct the false ones.

1. When you have a whale of a time, you go to the zoo and watch whales.
2. When a person is the life and soul of a party, they are having a great time there.
3. You throw a housewarming party in winter.
4. The right mix of people is a vital element of a good party.
5. For a fancy dress party, you might dress us as a prince or a princess.
6. You can be on your own only at home.





The text says:


That party had all the ingredients that a good party should have.
We spent the whole night celebrating.


Today I’d like to concentrate on two words which are often confused and used wrongly, because of many similarities between them: 'all’ and 'whole’.



1) Generally speaking, WHOLE has the meaning of 'all of something’, but look how you can use it with other words:


My whole family met during our wedding last year.
The whole book takes weeks to read.
This is the best cake in the whole world.


In the examples above, we can see that 'whole’ is followed by singular nouns and can be preceded by pronouns such as 'my/his etc.’


2) The use of ALL is a bit more complex. ALL may be followed by uncountable or plural nouns (in contrast to 'whole’), e.g.


He thinks that all students should receive a grant from the state.
Have you spent all your money?


It can also go with words such as 'the’, 'this’ or 'his’ and nouns, e.g.


I want to see all the employees tomorrow.
So, you’ve been sitting here all this time!
He spent all his life working as a clerk.


And finally, ALL is often used with time words, meaning 'the whole of the period of time’, as in the following phrases:


I’ve been working in the garden all day and I’m exhausted.
She worked all year without a break, so she deserves a holiday now.




A/ Why did Jane even bother coming to the party? She’s such A WALLFLOWER!
B/ I know. She seems to be having no fun at all.


A wallflower is someone at a social event who has no one to dance with or talk to, often because they are shy. This is the opposite of a party animal.




1. When you JAZZ something UP, you make it more lively, exciting, or interesting. This is a synonym of ‘spice up’ from the previous lesson.


Let’s jazz up the party by having a striptease!
Jazz the dress up with some bright accessories.


2. When you CHEER UP, you become happier. When you CHEER someone UP, you try to make them happier.


There’s nothing like a good party to cheer you up.
I tried to cheer him up, but he just kept sitting in the corner.



Match the sentence halves.

1. He jazzed up the food                                  a. with a spicy sauce.
2. She cheered up                                             b. and asked her to dance.
3. He took pity on the poor wallflower         c. when she heard the good news.







The neighbours of student dorms in Cracow have been filing complaints with university authorities regarding the high levels of noise at the weekends. “The students seem to be doing nothing except partying,” says one of the disgruntled citizens. “Shouldn’t they be studying or something?” The students retort that studying should not only be drudgery, and that having fun is part and parcel of being a student. And which side do you agree with?



– student dorms – big buildings where many students live
– filing complaints with – complaining to
– disgruntled – unhappy
– retort – reply
– drudgery – boring and unpleasant work that you have to do
– part and parcel – a crucial component


download lesson (pdf)



Ex. 1
1. False – you have a great time.
2. True
3. False – you throw it when you move into a new house or flat.
4. True
5. True
6. False – also in other places.


Ex. 2
1. a
2. c
3. b