An understanding of the processing underlying single word reading will provide insight into how skilled reading is achieved, with important implications for reading education and impaired reading. Investigation of the functional neuroanatomy of both the mature and the developing systems will be critical for reaching this understanding. To this end, ongoing methodological advances in functional neuroimaging help to provide imaging data that are increasingly useful in complementing and expanding on results from decades of behavioral research. This article is an overview of progress in using functional neuroimaging to investigate single word reading. Methodological considerations are emphasized, particularly as they pertain to studying reading development. Strategies for overcoming methodological challenges are discussed, along with results of some recent work in which such strategies are applied.