After graduating from Endicott College and Adelphi University, with a degree in psychology,  I  settled outside of Paris, France in 1985.

After obtaining my AMI Montessori for 3-6 certification in Paris (AMI diploma N° P258), I created the Bilingual Montessori School of Val de Marne (in Joinville-le-Pont) in 1989.  When the school moved in 2016, the school became E.M.I.T. of Nogent sur Marne (Ecole Montessori Internationale Trilingue - International Montessori Trilingual School).

Board of administration member of the AMF for 18 years. I was part of two Commissions: the school commission and the communications commission.

In 2010, with the E.B.M.V.M. teaching staff, LSF (French Sign Language for the deaf) was added as a third language throughout the school.  Alongside the Francophone and Anglophone Montessori teacher in each class, there is a deaf assistant who communicates in their maternal language which is LSF.

For the first time in France, in 2011, the AMI training institute welcomed two deaf student teachers for the assistant training certification in presence of the LSF interpreters.

This innovative project is now firmly rooted throughout the school allowing children aged 2 to 12 to be totally immersed in the three languages - French, English and LSF.

Deaf and hard of hearing children are perfectly integrated.

E.M.I.T. of Nogent sur Marne was one of the first Montessori schools to sign the new Charter in 2012 set up by the AMF/ISMM/AMI (Association Montessori de France and the Institut Supérieur Maria Montessori are the two AMI (Association Montessori International) affiliated societies in France). To this day, E.M.I.T. is the only school in France to have signed the AMF/ISMM Charter renewal in January 2020.

As a member of the association Public Montessori, I became a member of the selection committee to determine which projects presented by public school teachers could benefit from the grants for Montessori material.

In 2017, I  translate and edit Aline Wolf’s book, The Parent’s Guide to the Montessori Classroom,  in French.

E.B.M.V.M. as well as E.M.I.T. has been running Parent Workshops since 2012. The Workshops offer parents concrete ways to better understand, communicate and manage their children's reactions. Having completed the APComm training course, I became an animator myself, able to present the Parent Workshops  in schools and centers.

In light of my thirty-five years of experience, I (Patricia Peterson-Fontenay president of Montessori Consulting France), now convey all of this considerable experience and Montessori values to other existing or future Montessori schools in France as well as internationally.