The Essential Grandma’s Guide to Emojis: Decoding Your Grandkids’ Texts

Disclaimer: Devoted Grandma is reader-supported. If you purchase anything through my site, I may receive a small commission (at no cost to you). It helps keep the site alive, so thank you.

If you have grandkids who are old enough to have their own phone and text, you know that it is a joy to communicate with them in yet another way, even if it does seem a little rushed and impersonal. Yes, I would rather have a conversation face-to-face or over the phone, but if typing back and forth gets the grandkids to check in more, I will take it! 

I must admit that I am also a bit of an emoji fanatic – they are so fun! However, what I thought some of the emojis meant was way off… Oops! Since I like to research and read, I compiled a guide to decoding emojis that will hopefully help someone else as much as it has helped me.

But first things first…

What are emojis?

Emojis coming off the screen

Emojis are small digital images or icons used to express an idea, emotion, or message in electronic communication. They’re a universal language that can add tone, humor, and clarity to text messages, emails, and social media posts.

Why should I use emojis?

Emoji pins

Emojis can help convey tone in a text message where words might fail. For example, a message like “I’m proud of you” could sound serious, but adding a smiley face at the end 🥰 can show your grandchild – or whoever it is you’re talking to – that you’re expressing this sentiment with warmth and love.

Tips on using emojis

Sharing screens with the grandparents
  1. Keep it relevant: Use emojis that make sense in the context of your conversation. For instance, if you’re asking about your grandchild’s soccer game, you might use a soccer ball emoji ⚽.
  2. Less is more: Using too many emojis can make a message hard to read. Stick to one or two per message unless you’re feeling particularly adventurous.
  3. Watch for double meanings: Some emojis have popular meanings that aren’t immediately obvious. When in doubt, check this guide or ask your grandchild.
  4. Feel free to ask: If you receive an emoji you don’t understand, don’t be afraid to ask what it means. This can also be a fun way to engage with your grandchildren.
  5. Have fun: Emojis are meant to make conversations more enjoyable and engaging, so don’t be afraid to experiment and express yourself!
Emoji eggs
  1. 😂 – Face with Tears of Joy: This is used to show something is very funny.
  2. ❤️ – Red Heart: This shows love and affection.
  3. 👍 – Thumbs Up: This is a sign of approval, similar to saying “okay” or “good.”
  4. 😭 – Loudly Crying Face: This can mean the person is very sad or, sometimes, very happy.
  5. 🎉 – Party Popper: This represents celebration or congratulations.
  6. 💕 – Two Hearts: This shows love or affection, often used to show love for family and friends.
  7. 👏 – Clapping Hands: This is used to show applause or praise.
  8. 😍 – Smiling Face with Heart-Eyes: This shows love or admiration, like saying “I love it!”
  9. 😊 – Smiling Face with Smiling Eyes: This shows happiness or approval.
  10. 😔 – Pensive Face: This shows sadness or disappointment.
  11. 🎂 – Birthday Cake: Used to wish someone a happy birthday.
  12. 🎁 – Wrapped Gift: This is used to symbolize a gift or celebration.
  13. 🤔 – Thinking Face: Used when deep in thought or pondering over something.
  14. 😎 – Smiling Face with Sunglasses: This one conveys a sense of coolness, confidence, or even an ‘easy-going’ attitude.
  15. 😢 – Crying Face: This represents sadness or sorrow.
  16. 😡 – Pouting Face: This conveys anger or frustration.
  17. 🤗 – Hugging Face: This is used to show warmth and affection, like a virtual hug.
  18. 🙏 – Folded Hands: This can signify praying, thankfulness, or pleading.
  19. 💪 – Flexed Biceps: This can show power, strength, or motivation.
  20. 💤 – Zzz: This is often used to indicate sleep or tiredness.
  21. 🙄 – Face with Rolling Eyes: This shows annoyance or exasperation.
  22. 😳 – Flushed Face: This can be used to convey embarrassment, surprise, or mild discomfort.
  23. 👀 – Eyes: This represents paying attention, being alert, or often an expression of surprise.
  24. 👋 – Waving Hand: This is a simple way to say hello or goodbye.
  25. 😩 – Weary Face: This is often used to show tiredness, exhaustion, or feeling done with the day.
  26. 🌹 – Rose: Often used to represent love, romance, or appreciation.
  27. 🍀 – Four Leaf Clover: This is often associated with good luck or St. Patrick’s Day.
  28. 🐶 – Dog Face: This one is often used when talking about dogs or pets.
  29. 🍕 – Pizza: Used to represent the food, but can also signal a fun and laid-back attitude.
  30. 🎈 – Balloon: Used to represent celebrations or parties.

Now that you have a basic understanding of emojis and how to use them, start incorporating them into your messages! Your grandkids will appreciate your efforts to engage with them in a language they understand. Happy texting! 🎉😊

Love Being A Grandma?

Then you'll love my daily email! Over 34,500 grandmas get it to start their morning off on the right foot. It's uplifting, fun, and always completely free. Give it a try below!