If you're preparing ideas for a question or topic area for part 2 of the speaking test, I recommend starting with one or two key words or ideas. In my video lessons I call these key ideas "themes".
When you have a theme, you can then search for good vocabulary related to that theme. Here are two resources that will help you:
- A thesaurus will give you synonyms and similar words. I use the thesaurus on my computer, but you'll easily find one online if your computer doesn't have a built-in dictionary.
- The Oxford Collocation Dictionary will show you words that are often used together with your chosen word; so you'll be be able to use your words correctly in longer phrases.
Let's use the 'proud' topic in this lesson as an example.
First, I'll choose two "theme" words: proud and achievement.
From my thesaurus, here are some other words to describe being 'proud':
And from the collocation dictionary, some phrases with the word 'achievement':
- a great / major / outstanding / remarkable / tremendous achievement
- my proudest achievement
- a feeling of achievement
- a sense of achievement
This is just the beginning of my 'theme preparation', but I'm already starting to gather some nice vocabulary for my description. In next Friday's lesson, I'll show you how I include these ideas in a full answer.