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Immersion Learning

Immersion learning refers to a pedagogical approach where individuals engage deeply and actively in a learning experience by immersing themselves in the environment of their subject matter. In an educational context, immersion learning is often applied to language acquisition. But immersion learning can also involve connecting with a community to better understand its customs, traditions, religion, or social dynamics. By being fully immersed, individuals are more likely to internalize and apply what they learn, leading to a more profound understanding of one’s surroundings and a deeper respect and appreciation of the context and its people. Immersion learning experiences like these are valued for their ability to foster cross-cultural understanding, break down stereotypes, and promote a more inclusive and interconnected global perspective.

At Tumbuh Global, we seek to embody an equitable model for cross-cultural enrichment through immersion learning that ensure individuals and communities doing the educating, whether passively or actively, are fairly consulted, engaged, and compensated for their lived expertise. We ensure that all Guided Global Odysseys™ are by invitation, locally sourced and led, contribute to a longterm partnership, and are planned with an eye towards lessening the ecological impact of our travels. We chose immersion learning as a pedagogical container for our odysseys because of its ability to create opportunities for direct interactions with embedded global communities.

 

The Global Teacher™ Method is more than a strategic educational model or immersive travel curriculum. It is a personal mission to offer a holistic alternative to those who feel called to engage their global neighbor. In the years leading up to the formation of Tumbuh Global, we identified and finally named our own: 1) growing discomfort with expressions of Christian mission, aid, and even church-based service projects steeped in white savior complex and 2) a growing frustration with progressives for being too paralyzed to engage their global neighbor outside of their own context for fear of repeating the past. Neither approach was growing global communities, equalizing power dynamics, or building a more equitable and just world. We knew a new approach to global engagement for people of faith and moral courage was needed. 

The Global Teacher™ Method marries the benefits of immersion learning with the core principles of global citizenship education (GCED) and spiritual direction as formation to deliver a transformative immersion learning experience built around how adults learn and grow in the context of community. GCED aims to increase cultural sensitives, grow global competencies, and promote cross-cultural exchange. Coupled with spiritual direction as formation, we prioritize listening to the inner teacher as a means of personal growth and development in order to offer a better self back to the community. This innovative approach encourages participants to excavate their intentions around "help" and assistance, address their prejudices about under-resourced and "differently" developing communities, meditate over their social responsibility on a global scale, focus on being over doing, and listen deeply to their global neighbor as one of many voices used by their inner teacher. We focus on the lived experience of others as a core contribution to our own self-discovery and, in turn, our collective liberation. We teach and employ active listening skills, practice a deep appreciation for the natural and spiritual world, are led by local communities in our interpretation and exploration of surroundings, and seek to learn from the cultural and religious expressions of our context. We focus on the work each of us needs to do to discover our truest selves so that what we offer back to the world is a grounded, authentic global response. 

Through a unique partnership with Carbon Footprint, Ltd., Tumbuh Global also offsets the carbon footprint of every odyssey traveler by supporting renewable energy projects globally. 

- We Are Hiring -

Immersion Support Assistant

2024 Guided Global Odyssey™ Offering

Due to an increasing number of private odysseys in 2024 and early 2025, we will only be hosting one public odyssey opportunity in 2024. Participation in this odyssey is by registration application, Learn more and/or apply by clicking the green button below for more details. Space is limited. An invitation following a completed registration application and a non-refundable deposit will confirm your place on the odyssey.

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Nepal and Tibet Spiritual Odyssey

Kathmandu, Nepal & Lhasa, Tibet

10/19/24-11/2/24

Interested in a private odyssey?

We are pleased to work with schools, churches, seminaries, and nonprofits to design unique guided global odyssey experiences using our global network of resources and travel guides. If you are looking for a culturally-sensitive, locally-led, international immersion learning experience, book a free consultation with us today.

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Amanda Klinck

From preparation to coming back home, the experience was phenomenal. The online tools available to prepare allowed for open communication between the organizers and fellow travelers. Once in country, the partnerships and itinerary flowed well and I was able to experience a once in a lifetime journey. Not only did we visit Nepal, we were able to connect with local friends on personal levels, adding to the overall journey. Tumbuh cares about their mission and delivering quality substance and an intimate travel experience. I highly recommend anyone take an odyssey with Tumbuh.

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Missy Ward Angalla

I was able to participate in Tumbuh Global's odyssey to Siem Reap, Cambodia. I was SO glad that I did! It was an amazing experience. Lindsay Andreolli-Comstock was a wonderful guide and facilitator and did a phenomenal job in giving our group opportunities to connect, learn and grow! 
I can't recommend Tumbuh Global more highly to anyone who is looking for an immersive learning travel experience!

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Rick Kraus

As a senior, non-Spanish speaking, first time visitor to South America, I took a leap of faith in joining Tumbuh Global and about 20 other travelers on their odyssey to the Galápagos Islands, Ecuador. It. Was. Amazing! Tumbuh Global arranged for us to get nose to nose with the incomparable creatures, the amazing locations, and the wonderful people of the Galápagos. But, more that that, Tumbuh Gl attended to the mind, body, and spirit of each and every one of the travelers in their charge...  I would trust them to take me anywhere in the world!

Past Odyssey Experiences

Since our founding in January of 2018, guided global odysseys have been a core educational component of our mission. In conversation with partners on the ground, immersion learning experiences are planned at the invitation of local communities so as to have minimal disruptive effect while offering maximum educational impact for odyssey participants. The locations, dates, times of year, activities, and programming are chosen based on the expertise of those who call these locations home. Whenever possible, Tumbuh Global staff defer to local leadership for best practices and religious and cultural sensitivities.

Women in Sarong

Women's Research Odyssey

Bali, Indonesia

October 2023

Image by Sebastian Pena Lambarri

Multi-Faith Odyssey

Kathmandu, Nepal

October 2019

Image by Paul Szewczyk

Clergy Study Abroad Odyssey

Siem Reap, Cambodia

February 2023

Image by Sebastian Pena Lambarri

Multi-Faith Odyssey

Kathmandu, Nepal

November 2018

Rocky Island

Eco-Spirituality Odyssey

Galapágos Islands, Ecuador

January 2020

Image by Adli Wahid

Humanitarian Odyssey

Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh

July 2018

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