a - shape (3 examples each for narrow, wide, 2 examples for normal)
a - direction (3 examples up, 3 examples down)
c- vertex (3 examples vertex above, vertex below, 2 examples, vertex at origin)
I copied pg. 9 onto overhead transparency paper and had the students cut out and color the parabolas on the transparency paper. We then taped/glued the parabolas onto the parabolas on the regular paper (in the notes), so students could really see the transformations compared to the parent function.
These notes are designed for 9th grade ESL students. Most of my students have not been to school, and have very limited reading abilities, thus the notes are very visual. There is a snoopy character at every important summary step. There are graphic organizers after each exploration. There is a great (and useful) graphic organizer at the of exploration 2 that summarizes everything about "a" (it is a flow chart - the students really understood and used it).
Plan more time than you think for cutting and gluing.
Do not let them cut out more than one exploration and one example at a time. Have the students write their names on each exploration in case it takes more than one day (it did for me).
There is also an on your own matching (match equation to picture) section of various parabolas that have both a and c values.