Meet the Team

Erika Cardamone, MS, CCC-SLP & the Play on Words Team

Erika O. Cardamone, MS, CCC-SLP

CEO, Speech Language Pathologist, Writer, Reviewer, Toy Expert

Erika Cardamone is a speech-language pathologist, Mom of four, and toy enthusiast. She spends her work life in schools and private practice helping parents and kids talk more and play hard.

She received her Masters Degree from Columbia University, went on to teach graduate students at her alma mater, and supervised students abroad while doing work in Africa and South America. Her expertise has been recognized on major parent resource blogs, such as the Honest Company, Disney, and the ASHA Wire.

Starting her career in New York City, then migrating to San Francisco, and finally settling outside of Philadelphia, Erika has experience working and playing with infants through school aged children. She’s spent most of her career in the urban setting, coaching parents to find the best toys and tools for small city living. Erika found a true passion for play and educating parents in 2011, when her sister (a first-time-mom) was eager for new information and new ideas on how to make playtime meaningful.

In her free time, she’s searching for umami in her local eateries, building forts and having dance parties with her husband and four kids. She continues to operate her private speech therapy practice at and utilizes the best toys, games, books and media to empower parents to be their child’s first teacher.

Sherry Y. Artemenko MA, CCC-SLP

Speech Language Pathologist, Writer, Toy Consultant

Speech-language pathologist, Sherry Artemenko, has loved working with children and educating families to improve their child’s communication skills, having served more than 35 years in public and private school systems and her private practice.

Sherry intuitively identifies the learning potential in toys and games, passionately sharing her knowledge with parents, educators, brands and retailers to be more attuned and committed to smart play. Founding in 2003 and the PAL Award (Play Advances Language) in 2011 to recognize and promote the best products, Sherry is established as the credentialed speech expert in the Industry to recognize and promote exceptional purveyors of smart play.

Recognized as a speech-language expert in Parents Magazine,, San Francisco Chronicle and The Chicago Tribune, her blog and website detail how to use toys to elevate language learning. A popular resource for therapists and parents alike, it was named an ASHAsphere “Best Speech-Language Blog.” Sherry also regularly shares her insights on FOX and NBC TV News affiliates, recommending “Smart Toys,” her “Top 10 PAL Picks,” and how the world of STEM is supported by a strong foundation in language skills.

Graduating with honors from Northwestern University with a Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts degrees in Communicative Disorders, she is a licensed certified member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. True to her mission of supporting kids and families, she recently served as Chair of the National Board of Directors for “YoungLives,” providing support for pregnant and parenting teens and their babies.

Born in the Midwest, Sherry and her husband raised their three boys in Connecticut. They became residents of North Carolina in 2020. Their three sons, Sherry’s first Play on Words clients and toy testers, Bill, Yale ‘00; Andrew, Northwestern ‘03; and Peter, Duke ’05, graced them with three wonderful daughters by marriage. They are blessed with 11 precious grandchildren who love to play on words with Sheshe and Artie.


Erika offers services including speaking, consulting, and media appearances.

Erika Cardamone working with children

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