You’re an innovator, you like to be one of the first ones to spot and adopt the Next Big Thing, and even use it like no one ever has before you. You believe there’s no such thing as 100% optimal, but are willing to strive and experiment, and tweak and learn from mistakes to get pretty darned close.
The important thing is to try. You take risks and increasingly hone your skills in picking the right horses to back. Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg once said, “The biggest risk is not taking any risk. In a world that’s changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.”
For early adopting teachers, always on the lookout for new technologies to accelerate and enhance their students’ learning and at the same time save them laborious admin time, here are the 6 solid reasons to remain an Early Adopter:
1. Being First allows you to be Best. Early adoption of technology not only proves and exercises your adaptability, it also gives your department complete creative freedom to experiment and revolutionize use cases before the technology becomes mainstream throughout a school and old hat. (you’ll be onto the next thing!)
2. You’re the Expert. You’ll be the one other teachers will come to for advice and expertise, Thought leadership in your school is critical to growing respect and earning the admiration of your colleagues and school governors. When you become the go-to on questions of the next big thing, you become an even bigger asset to your school.
3. Grow your Subject Buzz. We all know that film and media subjects are unfairly but regardless often marginalised in our schools, and don’t get a much encouragement and therefore attention as many other subjects. One great way to combat this is to grow the Buzz around your subject. Luckily handheld devices are allowing students to share their coursework and projects like never before!
4. Lead the Followers. Once you’ve successfully adopted a new technology in your department, teachers from other departments will come to you for advice on how to adopt it successfully for their own subjects. In other words, you become an integral part of the story used to educate future adopters.
5. Help make it Better. When you take a risk and become an early adopter, you can often get involved directly with the technology developers themselves and help shape future developments. A huge benefit as well is to receive the sort of one-on-one support and attention that later adopters rarely get once a technology has gone mainstream.
6. Get in with the Right Crowd. Early adopters are also the one’s most likely to enjoy to encounter other early adopters, and with online communities, the chances to do that grow constantly. For the same reason that these others like you are following the mantras and reasons above and becoming the Pioneers, the fact is, the early adopters and innovators tend to get along really well with each other. You’re an amazing crowd!
So, in the face of inertia from above in your school and even apathy from below, film and media teachers like you continue to look to the latest technology to keep your subject energised, growing and a memorably valuable learning experience for your students.
(credit to Inc. mag for inspiration)