Daiva Grakauskaitė Karkockienė has been the Director of the ECG since 2002. She holds a doctorate/Ph.D. in psychology and Social Science, is an Associate Professor at the Lithuanian University of Educational Science, Department of Developmental and Educational Psychology. Daiva teaches the following courses at the Lithuanian University of Educational Science: „The psychology of Talented Children“, „Creativity Development Methods and Programs“, „Family Psychology“, „Psychology Consulting for Individuals and Groups“. She conducts research in the areas of creativity, gifted/talented children, and family psychology.
Research interests include: creativity, gifted education, family psychology. Dr. Karkockienė created and adopted a creativity training program which was presented at Riga’s Scientific Institute of Creativity. She participates in NYEX (Network of Youth Excellence), leads national and international gifted education research projects. She has also attended various courses and conferences in various countries, including Great Britain, Hungary, Germany, France, USA, Israel, Bulgaria, Latvia, and elsewhere. She is a member of the Lithuanian Psycholgists Association and ISSBD (The International Society of Behavioral Development).
Assoc. prof. dr. D. Karkockiene has a long history of experience in teaching, group facilitation, and consulting/counseling. She developed a creativity development program, the effectiveness of which is supported by academic research. In 2010, this program was presented at the Riga Creativity Education Institute and selected as one of five creativity education programs for use in other countries. Her program was also approved for use by the Latvian Education Institute.
Assoc. prof. dr. D. Karkockienė has written over 100 academic and popular press articles. She is the author of three books about creativity and giftedness: 1) Psychology of Creativity. Vilnius: Logotipas, 2003, p. 256); 2) Basics of Psychology of Creativity. The Handbook for Pedagogical University Students (Vilnius: VPU, 2006, p. 101); 3) Where do the „Why askers“ go? Handbook of Creativity Training for Teachers, Parents, Students (Vilnius: Logotipas, 2006, p. 74). (Vilnius, 2006, p. 101).
At the ECG, she leads seminars for teachers about creativity development, gifted/talented children education, targeting creative methods. Participants become familiar with with theoretical creativity development challenges, complete practical exercises/tasks, based on her experience working in this paradigm.
Tel.: +370 683 11 803
Audra Balundė, PhD student of psychology. Audra Balundė has a masters degree in Developmental Psychology from the Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences and is currently studying at Mykolas Romeris University. Areas of scientific interest and research include: (I) Environmental Psychology – patterns of sustainable behavior and its fostering perspectives; (II) Psychology of Creativity – cognitive aspects of creative thinking and creative personality dimensions. Practical activities: (I) counselling children-adolescents and their parents regarding emotional, behavioral and learning challenges; (II) supporting ECG – providing the most recent and relevant evidence-based scientific information regarding gifted education, as well as designing actual studies in the field of gifted education.
Tel.: +370 671 01 322
Erika Strolienė, psychologist, Lithuanian university of educational sciences lecturer. Master’s degree of psychology acquired from Lithuanian university of educational sciences. Scientific areas of research are psychology of gifted children, family psychology, creativity. Practical activities are counselling and assessment of children and adolescent, family counselling on child talent issues, self knowledge and career choice, social skills groups, creativity education. Member of Lithuanian Psychological Association.
Tel.: +370 612 26 706
Kristina Paradnikė, psychologist, PhD student of psychology in Mykolas Romeris University, a post-graduate student of Cognitive-Behavioral Psychotherapy, a member of Lithuanian Psychological Association. Areas of scientific interest and research include career development psychology and personal psychological resources that help to cope with difficulties and to adapt, and that strengthen and facilitate psychological well-being. Practical activities include counselling children, teenagers and their parents when their lives are challenged with emotional, behavioral and communication difficulties; career counselling. Competences, acquired during studies and while working as a psychologist and a lecturer, include recognising and assessing gifted children, counselling children and adults, conducting lectures and seminars about career competencies, emotional and behavior difficulties, decision making, goal setting and self-awareness.
Indrė Pukytė, psychologist, master degree of developmental psychology, Lithuanian University of educational sciences. Research interests and areas: psychological crises,interpersonal difficulties, relationship problems in families, children and teens behavioural, emotional problems and studying difficulties. Conducting classes and individual consultations for children and teens to gain communication and creativity skills and improve self-knowledge. Also, consulting parents.
Tel.: +370 678 86 928
Vaiva Juknevičienė, psychologist, attained master’s degree from Vilnius University. Member of Lithuanian Psychological Association. Fields of interest include childhood psychology, family psychology, psychological traits of gifted children. Activities: parent counselling concerning child behavioral and emotional problems, psychological child assessment, social skills training groups for children, seminars for teachers about psychological characteristics of gifted children.
Tel.: +370 698 01 410
Assoc. prof. dr. Ona-Giedrutė Butkienė has been active in the work of ECG since its founding, consulting with parents, teachers and children, and has developed and led three CGE programs. She is an Associate Professor at the Lithuanian University of Educational Science, a member of the Lithuania Gestalt Therapy Association. Her areas of academic research include intelligence and special abilities, and personality development. She participated in the work of the ECHA (European Council for High Ability). She is the author of three books, and numerous articles about intelligence and its connection with choice of profession, about selection of psychological criteria teaching methods, and appreciation of Gestalt psychology. She has prepared Gestalt self awareness programs targeted towards self help and harmony with others for children, students, teachers and parents.
Monita Leavitt, Ph.D., is an independent international Gifted Education Consultant who taught for over 35 years (25 in gifted education). Her Ph.D. was awarded from Oxford Brookes University in England for research on Giftedness Perceptions and Practices of Teachers in Lithuania (2009). Dr. Leavitt has provided lectures and staff development on giftedness in Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Lithuania, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United States. A member of the World Gifted Council and ECHA (European Council for High Ability Children), she currently serves on Boards that include IGET (Africa), Aristle School (Hong Kong) and the Global Gifted Children’s Center (Germany).
Dr. Leavitt provided online teacher training courses in gifted education for the Summer Institute for the Gifted (SIG) and taught online courses for gifted children for both SIG and the Athena Advanced Academy (USA). She served as a SIG Academic Dean for two summers (Dartmouth College and Yale University) as well as Affiliate Director for California Future Problem Solving (2014-2015). She also provided several virtual lectures on giftedness for the Global Gifted Children’s Center in Second Life as well as for IGGY (England’s Gifted Conference in 2013).
Dr. Leavitt is a published author of journal articles, including:
Leavitt, M. (June 2009). Giftedness – A Problematic Term, Vilnius Pedagogical Journal (Ugdymo Psichologija), No. 20.
Leavitt, M. & Geake, J. (December 2009). Giftedness Perceptions and Practices of Teachers in Lithuania, Gifted and Talented International Journal. Vol. 24 (2).
Leavitt, M. (July 2008). Gifted Education Perceptions and Practices in Lithuania. Asia-Pacific Conference on Gifted and Talented Conference Paper, Singapore.
She is also an author of books about giftedness that include:
Klingner, R.; Leavitt, M. et al, (pending publication 2016). Creativity in Gifted Education. Munster, Germany: LIT-Verlag.
Klingner, R.; Leavitt, M. et. al (2015). Make Them Shine. Munster, Germany: LIT-Verlag.
Klingner, R.; Leavitt, M. et. al (2014). Let it Flow. Munster, Germany: LIT-Verlag.
Leavitt, M., et. al (2010). Exceptional Needs Standards (Second Ed.) National Board for Professional teaching Standards (NBPTS). VA: National Board Certification for Teachers.
Leavitt, M. (2007). Building a Gifted Program: Identifying and Educating Gifted Students in Your School. AZ: Great Potential Press.
Psychology student and volunteer at ECG
Tel. : +370 61099597
Jolanta Brazaitytė is a volunteer at The Educational Center for the Gifted (ECG) and seeking a bachelor degree of psychology at Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences (LEU).
The scope of scientific concerns and directions of researche – gifted children, family psychology and creativity. Previously Jolanta has acquired a bachelor degree of hydrogeology likewise engineering geology at Vilnius University (VU).
Work experience: projects management, staff selection, events organization, the administration of HR department .