Pasta Quake Magnitude Grades K - 2
This activity introduces the concept of earthquake size by breaking pieces of dry spaghetti. You will use a single strand of spaghetti to illustrate a moderate earthquake (magnitude 5), a bundle of 30 spaghetti strands for a large earthquake (magnitude 6) and 900 strands to illustrate a major earthquake (magnitude 7). By observing with their eyes, hands, and ears, students develop a qualitative feel for different sizes of earthquakes. Plan on taking 50 minutes of class time to complete the activity and 60 to 90 minutes of preparation.