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SMILE! It's World Emoji Day!

Tags: Languages
July 18, 2022 12:00 AM
By: PDE Press and Communications Office

​World Emoji Day is Sunday, July 17th. July 17 is famously displayed on the Calendar Emoji, and most of us use emojis nearly every day, so why not celebrate?

Emojis are a major part of our daily communication, and have been for a number of years. According to Facebook, in 2017 over 5 billion emojis were sent on Messenger every single day. On Twitter, more than one in five tweets included at least one emoji in 2021. By mid-2015, half of all comments on Instagram included an emoji.

Emojis are more than just a fun way to express ourselves on social media, they've also entered professional spaces. The White House Council of Economic Advisors used emojis in a report about millennial debt and education. It's safe to say emojis are pretty embedded in all aspects of our lives, but the concept  isn't all that new. 

For centuries, cultures all around the world have used different forms of pictograms as part of human expression. One example that might come to mind is ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. Modern-day emojis can be loosely traced back to the 1990s where emoticons such as :) and :( were used to signal a smile or a frown, or even as a form of punctuation.

We see countless emojis every day, many on our cell phones or computers, and even some in print advertisements or magazines. Basically, emojis are everywhere. It is also becoming more and more popular to see emojis used in the classroom. Teachers at all levels in the education field use emojis in their classrooms in a number of different ways. 

For example, emojis can be used when giving directions in the classroom. In the same way we recognize a company's logo before we read their corresponding social media post, emojis can provide visual cues for students. Adding emojis can help break up information and provide a visual cue for directions, and students may even begin to associate a certain emoji with certain directions!

With a new school year quickly approaching, emojis can also give us the opportunity to introduce and express ourselves to our new classmates and teachers. Emojis can be used a plethora of ways in the classroom. They could be used to share a story about our weekend or a recent vacation. For example, students could work in pairs where one student uses emojis to describe their weekend while the other tries to guess what their peer did. 

There is no shortage of ways emojis can be used in our everyday lives. We use them on social media, in our classrooms, at work, and even in print. Looking at your most recently used emojis, what does that say about your daily interactions, recent social media posts, or recent events in your life?

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