Someone I know used to think that “lol” meant “lots of love”. Imagine how horrified that person felt when my “friend” said to a family member who was struggling with a horrible situation, “lol”. All it took was three characters for a horrible misunderstanding. That is all it took for a family member to think, “what a jerk”.
As youth workers, we don’t always need to use teen slang, but it helps to be aware of it. It might help give context to a conversation that you hear about a student getting “Lit” on the weekend, and it doesn’t mean studying English literature, or lighting themselves on fire. Teen slang is something that is constantly evolving, and something that parents and youth workers should be aware of.
Recently, I was joking around with some students about being the G.O.A.T, and one of my students straight up asked me if I knew what this meant. As I quickly tried to show these grade 11 guys that I knew that GOAT meant the “Goat” like it was so weird made up term. These grade 11’s quickly informed me that it really meant, “Greatest of all time.” That now makes a lot of sense. I google things quickly now, so I don’t get caught in teen slang.
Here are 26 terms that will help you guide teen slang. Feel free to pass this on to parents.