We describe the use of arrayed waveguide gratings (AWGs) in the interrogation of fiber Bragg gratings (FBGs) for dynamic strain measurement. The ratiometric AWG output was calibrated in a static deflection experiment over a ±200 µe range. Dynamic strain measurement was demonstrated with a FBG in a conventional single-mode fiber mounted on the surface of a vibrating cantilever and on a piezoelectric actuator, giving a resolution of 0.5 µe at 2.4 kHz. We present results of this technique extended to measure the dynamic differential strain between two FBG pairs within a multicore fiber. An arbitrary cantilever oscillation of the multicore fiber was determined from curvature measurements in two orthogonal axes at 1125 Hz with a resolution of 0.05 m-1. © 2006 Optical Society of America.