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Our curriculum is built upon the principles outlined in our GEA Circles of Impact. This framework provides an invaluable lens through which we can more actively participate in the personal and professional growth our programs are designed to encourage. Participants are expected to immerse themselves fully, grappling with a diverse array of concepts, cultures, and philosophies that define various ways of being. Through the Circles of Impact, participants are given an essential framework to engage in this self-reflection, and to critically evaluate and internalize the richness of experiences offered through our travels. The Circles of Impact framework assists each participant to develop a more nuanced and insightful approach to understanding and interpreting the classrooms we visit and observe. We believe that reflective engagement with the concepts detailed in our Circles of Impact will make us more culturally responsive and aware travelers, thus enhancing our experiences in new and varied contexts, and enabling us to more effectively engage with all students in more meaningful ways.
ME: Awareness of myself and others, Internal Dialogue
MY CLASSROOM: Innovation, Empowerment and Growth
MY COMMUNITY (school/district/neighborhood): Expansion, Inclusion of Different Voices
MY NATURAL WORLD: Connection Through Well-being and Happiness
MY NATION: Innovation Through Multiple Voices
MY WORLD COMMUNITY: Connection Through Shared Stories
Within these circles we employ the following frameworks:
#1 Cultural Dimensions
(Me, Classroom, Community)
The exploration of cultural dimensions offers a multifaceted approach to understanding variations in values, beliefs, and behaviors among different global cultures. A sampling of this framework explores a wide range of paradigms including collectivism, power distance, uncertainty avoidance, humane orientation and future orientation. We use these dimensions to make sense of the world which is closest to us; ourselves, our classrooms and our communities. Collectively, these elements serve as a critical tool in navigating the complexities of diverse cultural landscapes, fostering more empathetic and nuanced intercultural interactions and collaborations, which are vital in the increasingly interconnected world we inhabit today.
Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that’s okay. The journey changes you; it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you. Hopefully, you leave something good behind.
– Anthony Bourdain
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