How can speech & language therapy help my child?


Speech and Language therapy encompasses many areas. Anything that involves communication! Many therapists specialize in one or two disability populations, age groups, or settings. It's always prudent to ask a therapist, “What's your specialty?”

The desire and ability to communicate is a basic need. It helps create connections between ourselves and others. As infants, we develop these connections quickly to survive, then these connections help us create emotional bonds with our caregivers.

Early communication development occurs quickly and red flags or delays are spotted early. Often at the beginning of the second year. In these early stages, they can also be less serious and quickly addressed. That is why early intervention is so important. Children come up with many ways to communicate their feelings, wants and needs when words fail them. Some positive and some that can be viewed as negative behaviors.

But it's all communication in some form.

Working with children of any age involves working with families. If we are looking to change a child's behavior, or to impact their communication development, you have to look at changing a part of the family system.

Speech and language assessment and therapy addresses the stages of communication development, the areas where a child is not progressing as they should, or learning  in a different way; and then implementing strategies to help the child and the family overcome these difficulties.


About Our Speech pathologist

Catherine is a wonderful addition to the CFC’s brilliant team of clinicians. She has more than thirty years of experience and specializes in working with children of all ages in and around Pasadena. She received a Bachelor's degree in Speech Patholgy and Audiology, and a Master's degree in Speech Pathology, both from California State University, Los Angeles. She has certifications in the SCERTS Model (Social, Emotional, Communication, Transactional) and the Hanen Parent Training Program, and is fully trained in the Neurodevelopmental Treament Technique (NDT), PROMPT, and oral motor and feeding techniques for speech production.


More about Catherine M. villagran

According to Catherine, speech and language therapy (in many ways) is about hope. This is why she begins by building a child's communication skills based on their existing strengths and helps them overcome their challenges. She empowers parents by teaching them the skills they need to take their children even further in their communication development. She does all this based on proven methods, the latest research in neurology, education, and speech and language pathology, and strategies that she has found successful over her extensive career. She understands the power of communication, and exhausts every avenue to help children reach their full potential.

Given Catherine’s three decades of SLP experience, she is often sought out to speak to support groups, private schools, preschools, university classrooms, and allied professional groups.  She also enjoys supervising recent graduates as clinical fellows, and helping the next generation of Speech Patholgists.

Catherine further encourages collaboration in her work, and has nurtured professional relationships throughout the San Gabriel Valley so she may better serve her families. This makes her a wonderful addition to the CFC where we have gathered under one roof expert, independent practitioners from various fields—psychology, social work, pediatrics, educational and occupational therapy, neuropsychology, parent education, speech and language therapy, and on and on—with each clinician offering a connection-based perspective. Families who visit will receive multidisciplinary treatment that is consistent, well informed, relationally based, and always aimed at helping them grow and thrive. To learn more about the CFC’s mission, click here to read a message from our Founder, Dr. Tina Payne Bryson, or click here to learn about our approach and interpersonal neurobiologyTo learn more about Catherine, click here.

SLP specialities

While Catherine has specialized training and experience treating children with a variety of diganoses, from birth through adolescence, her specialties and specific areas of interest include but are not limited to:

  • Autism

  • Early Intervention

  • Verbal Apraxia

  • Preschool Stuttering

  • Tongue Thrust

  • Speech Sound Remediation


If you would like to learn more about speech and language therapy, then click below and schedule a confidential consultation. You’ll be asked a series of quick questions (so we may match you with the best clinician for your needs), and then a member of our team will reach out to you shortly.

Banner photo provided by Unsplash; photo taken by Marisa Howenstine.