Grundtvig Workshops are one of the new actions in the Grundtvig Programme which have been launched in 2009.

The objective of this action is to enable adult learners to participate in Workshops (learning events and seminars) taking place in another European country participating in the Lifelong Learning Programme.

This is a completely new form of mobility offered to adult learners in the Lifelong Learning Programme. The Grundtvig Workshops bring together individuals or small groups of learners from several countries for an innovative multinational learning experience relevant for their personal development and learning needs.

Modern Didactics Center with the financing of National Agency of Lithuania has organized the workshop Rethinking contemporary issues
on 6-10 June 2011 in Vilnius.
Workshop Reference number: 2010-1-LT1-GRU13-02891

Target group
Any adult learners, interested in personal and professional development, continuous self-improvement, eager to learn new learning strategies, innovative methods and searching for new ideas.

The programme is intended to provide content materials and instructions that will enable participants to think critically about contemporary issues. It means that participants will learn to think thoughtfully, carefully, coherently, consistently about complex problems comprised of multiple elements and varied solutions. The programme will revolve around the topic of Contemporary Issues. From this central theme a number of sub-themes will be presented for group deliberation. The course is not intended to be an in-depth study in logic, data analysis, argumentation or philosophy. Rather is a practical introductory course in critical thought designed to improve participants understanding of how to think, how to organize thoughts and present sound arguments, to form rational opinions.

1. To get acquainted with theoretical and philosophical background of critical thinking;
2. To practice critical thinking framework as key scheme of the methodology;
3. To learn more about contemporary issues by sharing and learning from each other;
4. To reflect critically gained knowledge and understanding;
5. To model different learning activities applying critical thinking methods and strategies.

Expected outcomes
Participants will learn and be able:
• to practice critical thinking framework as key scheme of the methodology;
• to model different learning activities applying critical thinking methods and strategies;
• to share their own learning practices and learn from each other;
• to develop and support independent positions and take responsibility for them; value expression of individual, independent, reflective opinion;
• to value cooperation, variety & cultural diversity;
• to find and use successfully different learning opportunities;
• to model, plan their own learning activities after the programme end.

Working language - EN

Participants have got certificates of participation of 40 academic hours.

Workshop was financed by the EU through LLP Grundtvig mobility grants, covering workshop, travel and accommodation costs.

Calls for international participants:
The first call - till 30/11/2010 - CLOSED
The second call - till 07/02/2011 - CLOSED
The third call - till 11/04/2011 - NOT ANNOUNCED

There have been received 77 applications and the group of 15 participants have been selected after the second call basing on motivation, regional-geographical, cultural distribution and proportion to ensure right balance and equal opportunities for participation of representatives from different EU states.


Workshop participants

Milan Kutra

I would like to improve my inner qualities, think and discuss how to implement active citizenship into education, other related topics and to find out opinions of other foreign colleagues. I expect to meet new people, to hear new opinions, different experiences from difference cultures. I hope that I will learn new attitudes to active citizenship.



I am attracted by the opportunity to learn to look at the complex contemporary issues and processes in a more thorough way and not just at their surface. Today’s world is rich in issues that need a more profound analysis on our part and I believe that after the workshop I will have the knowledge and tools to make such analyses. I hope that the workshop will help me look at things in a new way and will be interesting and stimulating, too.

Jan Charvát
Czech Republic

Today's world consist of many issues and problems, which have to be solved through compromises and joint discussions. I am eager to learn how to solve personal problems and meet new people with various opinions. New approaches to the global and local problems could “open the eyes” of many people, multicultural environment - in my opinion- is the best way how to do it.

Czech Republic

As a teacher I know that the personal and professional development of every person is very important. Learning should not end up when you finish your studies. It would be great to find out more about new learning styles, new methods, strategies, new ideas, new approaches towards the learning methods.


Heli Tuulikki Heinäaho

I'm eager to share views and ideas with other people and think multicultural cooperation is one of the best ways to teach and learn of the surrounding world. I expect to learn a lot on how to see things in different point of view and pick up some new improved ways to keep up my constant hunt for knowledge.

Denis Massard

My motivation to participate - exchange of experience, methods, special devices, approaching way-manners and concrete results in this domain. Through exchange of knowledge and experience, I expect to improve my efficacy for helping seniors with physical or mental diseases to have access to the word.

Françoise Pettelat

I hope, thanks to this European course, to acquire rewarding experiences from which both my students and myself will be able to take advantage - and be even more efficient to bridge and shrink the digital gap between generations.


Gabriella Bodó

I am expressing an interest in the one around me and the things happening in the world widely. I find it important in order for us to be able to handle the problems well in our days. Recognizing the viewpoint of other countries' participants by certain things would be interesting. I believe it so, we will be more successful in our own life if we can be growing efficiently, widely.


Elena Pataro

I’m very interested in active citizenship and democracy. I’d like to participate in a multinational learning experience to improve my knowledge about. I think it’s important to share personal experiences with people coming from other EU countries, discussing and thinking together it’s the better way to understand the different point of view and to develop new ideas.


Federica Pisi

At the end of this multinational learning experience I hope to be more aware about our possibilities in the world: cooperation, sharing experiences, democracy. I am trying to be a good citizen, reading about Politics and Economy but I’d like to be more responsible and active in the world because sometimes in everyday life is very difficult. I need a guide.


Elena Alina Sandulescu

The approach of this workshop makes possible the enhancement of practical and theoretical knowledge but also gaining skills attached to critical thinking and the opportunity to link with people from other countries and to articulate national interests and develop future projects together.



I always wished to participate on international camps, conferences, trainings, because I believe this is a great opportunity to get new perspectives. Since many years my basic interest is promoting and developing creative thinking among young adults, so every possibility to get closer to this topic, or to other subjects having a strong connection with creativity, learning or problem solving is a new step to take in order to achieve my goals.

Manuel Pueyo Fernandez

We are living fascinating times. A fast moving world is constantly being challenged by evolving online technologies. I want to be prepared to harness those changes: for this to happen I think it is important for me to work on a methodology on critical and design thinking. I need to familiarize with methods and tools that enable me to organize information, establish priorities and learn to think coherently and consistently.
Ömer Bora Namli

I want to analysis problems in better way and to progress myself about finding solutions. I hope at the end of this course I will improve my critical thinking and problems solving skills.

Jason Grant
United Kingdom

The title of the course seems to address some of those critical points, of which I wish to learn some new tools and techniques to initiate debate and discussion for people within my community. I hope to gain an understanding in critical thinking and take away useful tools to share with others, to meet some people who share a common interest in trying to make sense of our new world.






Workshop trainers


Daiva Penkauskiene is the director of Modern Didactics Centre since 1999. She holds master degrees of Lithuanian Language and Literature (Vilnius University, 1987) and management (University of Management and Economics & BI Norwegian School of Management, 2010). Work experience: Lithuanian language and literature teacher at gymnasium, scientific fellow at research institutes, educational projects coordinator at Open Society Fund-Lithuania, teacher at Vilnius Pedagogical University. She works as trainer, consultant and expert for development, anticorruption education, project management, modern teaching & learning strategies, university didactics and other programmes. She is also researcher, author, co-author and editor of many educational publications.
Daiva Penkauskiene manages Critical Thinking program in Lithuania since 1997. She also is certified trainer and certifier of international program "Reading and Writing fir Critical Thinking"; 2009-2011 she is the chair of Reading and Writing for Critical Thinking International Consortium (RWCT IC) Board of Directors. 



Asta Railiene is the lecturer at Social work Department at  Mykolas Romeris University Social Policy Faculty. She holds master degree of Lithuanian philology (Vilnius University, 1996) and social sciences (educology) doctoral degree (Vilnius pedagogical University, 2010). Work experience: lecturer at Open Society Fund-Lithuania Kaunas department, lecturer at Youth Career and Advising Centre, lecturer and projects coordinator at Modern Didactics Centre, assistant and lecturer of Social Pedagogy department at Vilnius pedagogical University Social Communication Institute. She works as trainer, consultant and expert of social work, professional guidance, career design, social project management.
Asta Railiene is a certified trainer of of international program "Reading and Writing fir Critical Thinking".


Workshop management team

Didzioji str. 5, LT-01128 Vilnius
tel., fax. + 370 5 212 3623
Daiva Penkauskiene
MDC director
Asta Matonyte,
MDC programs and projects
coordinators assistant
Jurgita Balaisiene
MDC administrator


Workshop information

Detailed workshop information

List of participants

Workshop program

Practical information

About workshop organizer

Education in Lithuania

 National summary sheets on education systems in Europe and ongoing reforms: Lithuania. Eurydice, 2009

 VET in Europe: Lithuania – country report. Cedefop, 2009

The educational system in Lithuania

The Ministry of Education and Science of The Republic of Lithuania

Useful links

Vilnius tourist information centre

Vilnius City Card

Vilnius in your pocket

Lithuania travel guide

Public transportation

Participants presentations






Workshop impressions

"It was great time. I learnt many new useful things, methods. I met many interesting people. It was even better than I expected."

"Workshop was organized very well. The organizers really knew what they were doing and I think that had a huge influence in the relaxed atmosphere we had. Most of us learned a lot of new things about the topic, different cultures and of themselves". 

"I have met a really open, friendly and fun group of people from various countries around the world. Everyone has been willing to learn and understand the topic of which I am really grateful for the experience. I believe that Grundtvig should be promoted more to people who may want to learn and understand the world around them in a more informal setting. Lastly more workshops should take place in countries like Lithuania as it gives myself a chance to challenge my preconceptions and broaden my horizons".

"This workshop was very well organized; good atmosphere in the group, good integration for different countries".

Workshop photo album / MDC
Workshop photo album / Heli Heinaaho
Workshop photo album / Alina Sandulescu

This activity has been funded with support from the European Commission lifelong learning programme, that is administrating in Lithuania Republic by the Education Exchanges Support Foundation.

This communication reflects the views only of the author, and the Education Exchanges Support Foundation and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.


© Modern Didactics Center, 2010