What is a Speech-Language Pathologist?

These days, speech-language pathologists go by a few different names...

          SLP, speech therapist, language therapist, etc.

Regardless of what they're called, look for a therapist who is licensed in your state and has their "C's"... their Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (i.e., ASHA). If they're certified, CCC-SLP will follow their name.  For more information on what the CCC-SLP is all about,
click here.

What do Speech-Language Pathologists do?

Speech-language pathologists are highly-trained and specialize in the development, prevention, evaluation, habilitation and rehabilitation of various disorders that affect the ability to communicate. Speech therapists are skilled in working with infants, children and adults who are struggling with weaknesses or disorders that fall into one or more the the categories below:


  • The ability to produce speech sounds correctly, fluently and with the proper voice and intonation

Language & Literacy

  • The ability to understand others and express one's needs, thoughts and feelings through the spoken or written word in sentences, conversations and through story-telling

  • Reading, writing and other literacy-based skills are simply another modality of language

Social-Cognitive Communication

  • The ability to understand, use and follow the rules of spoken and unspoken language in different social situations

  • This includes the ability to interpret the sometimes hidden intentions of others

  • The ability to attend to others and the environment, to organize thoughts, problem solve and plan

Auditory Processing

  • The ability to correctly recognize and interpret the sounds one hears

Oral-Motor, Feeding & Swallowing

  • The development of adequate strength, tone and range of motion of the jaw, tongue and lips

  • The ability to consume, chew and swallow age-appropriate foods without coughing or gagging

There are many different causes for weaknesses in the areas above.

In our experience, someone had a "feeling" that something wasn't quite right

...long before help was found.

What We Believe


  1. Have the power to learn
  2. Are curious and creative
  3. Can succeed!

​No two children have the same background, special needs or learning style. That's why our speech and language pathologist will create a truly individualized speech therapy plan for every child. All of our plans combine direct instruction, parent training and tools for family members to use in a way that works for them, their child and their home.

​How We're Different


  • Answers. Help. Progress!
  • Quality is the Primary Objective
  • Advanced Trainings & Certifications
  • Family-Focused at Every Step
  • Parent Observation & Training
  • Discounted Initial Consultations
  • Targeted Evaluations
  • Comprehensive Evaluations
  • Individual Therapy
  • Social Skills Groups
  • Hanen's "It Takes Two To Talk" Workshop for Parents & Caregivers
  • Tele-therapy Available
  • We take BCBS insurance!

​Ellen McSpadden is a highly skilled, ASHA-certified and NJ-licensed Speech-Language Pathologist with nearly two decades of experience working with children in the hospital, outpatient, school and in-home settings. She is a Certified Autism Specialist and a Certified Provider of PEERS (The Program for the Education and Enrichment of Relational Skills). In addition, she is PROMPT-Trained and completed the training for The Hanen Program's "It Takes Two To Talk" Workshop for Parents.

She was raised in suburban Maryland, just outside Washington, DC, and obtained degrees from the University of Wisconsin and the University of Maryland. Soon after, she relocated to southern New Jersey and began working with area families.  Ellen opened Cheerful Chatter LLC in 2013 after working closely with parents in their homes through the Early Intervention System. Despite the fact that Cheerful Chatter was not yet open, friends of those parents began calling, asking her to treat their child. Ellen's reputation and those word-of-mouth referrals created Cheerful Chatter Speech-Language Services... a private practice that area families know and love today.

Ellen's energy, passion and commitment to helping children of all ages is demonstrated in her dynamic, fun approach and the sincere, respectful relationship she cultivates with every parent. Children and teenagers look forward to motivating, engaging, fun and highly effective sessions that lead to genuine skill development. Sometimes, they don't even want to leave! She prides herself on helping children develop functional communication skills by developing strategies that are individually tailored, maximizing their success. Parents are encouraged to participate throughout sessions and receive the training necessary to use the strategies in the comfort of their own home and in the community. The progress of the children she works with is her sole focus during every therapy session and she is known to go above and beyond for every family. The speech, language and social skill development that her clients experience is a testament to her knowledge, skills, experience and passion.

Speech and Language Therapy 

The Cheerful Difference

Ellen's constant search for advances in the field of speech-language pathology exists to benefit the families she serves. At Cheerful Chatter in Voorhees, NJ, Ellen McSpadden will use the latest research and tap into the natural curiosity of your child. Here you will discover dynamic and personalized speech and language therapy for children of all ages with communication disorders.

We Love to Chatter:

P: (856) 577-0966

F: (856) 558-9901



1010 Haddonfield Berlin Road

Suite 404

Voorhees, NJ 08043

          ...He was not speaking, just babbling a little. I can remember Ellen's first session with us and how unsure I was if this would work. She quickly showed how she could take his favorite things, turn them into a game of sorts and teach him to comprehend words...”

~ Valerie

Mother in Cherry Hill, NJ

Cheerful  Links:

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Ellen McSpadden, MA, CCC-SLP, CAS

​Speech-Language Pathologist & Certified Autism Specialist

Owner & Speech Therapist