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The Rumblin' Road: Determining distance to a Thunderstorm

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The Rumblin' Road: Determining distance to a Thunderstorm

In this activity, learners discover how to determine the distance to a lightning strike or nearby thunderstorm. Learners participate in a series of exercises that simulate how the sound of thunder travels and at what speed. This resource includes information about thunder and why it occurs as well as lightning safety tips.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Learning Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:

Age Range:
Ages 6 - 14

Resource Types:
Activity, Lesson/Lesson Plan, Simulation



  • Earth and Space Science
    • Earth Processes
      • Weather and Climate
    • Earth Structure
      • Atmosphere
  • Mathematics
    • Measurement
      • Rate
    • Number and Operations
  • Physical Sciences
    • Heat and Thermodynamics
      • Heat and Temperature
    • Motion and Forces
      • Momentum and Velocity
    • Vibration and Waves
      • Sound
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations

Informal Categories

  • Nature and Environment


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • hear

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Components that are part of this resource:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



  • All Rights Reserved, National Weather Service,


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