No Strings Attached

   ETC > NSA Home > Math 9-12 > Translating Parabolas

Translating Parabolas

Students will use an online graphing calculator to graph quadratic functions.


  • Explain how to graph the graph of quadratic functions as a translation of the parent function. The graph of y=a(x-h)^2+h is the graph of y=ax^2 translated h units horizontally and k units vertically.
  • To use the vertex form of a quadratic function to analyze and describe the properties of a parabola.


  • Give students laptop computer to log in the school server. Ask the students to log in to website with the password given previously. Then, guide students to use the interactivity tool on chapter 5 lesson 5-2 and 5-3. Students will use the online graphing calculator to verify the previous day homework.
  • Students will work on laptops using the Prentice Hall web applications to explore how the change in coefficients a,b, and c will change the form, the position, and the coordinates of the vertex of the graph of quadratic functions. Then, the students will use the online graphing calculator to graph quadratic functions in vertex form. They will notice, if the constant h is positive, the graph shifts right, and if h is negative, the graph shifts left. Also, when k is positive, the graph shifts up; when k is negative, the graph shifts down. Last, the students will see on the graphs that the vertex has the coordinates (h, k) and the axis of symmetry is the line x=k.
  • Go over example 1, 2, and 3 in the book on page 249. Allow students to work on Check Understanding exercises for 5 minutes. The students can use technology tools, such as online graphing calculators, to work on their class work assignments. In doing this work, they will apply the concepts learned in class and explore new applications.
  • Verify the students' work on their notebooks and laptops. If there are any questions that are more difficult, the teacher will post hints on the board and guide students to find the correct solutions.

Sunshine State Standards

  • MA.912.A.7.1

NETS Profiles for Technology Literate Students

  • Make informed choices among technology systems, resources, and services.
  • Select and apply technology tools for research, information analysis, problem solving, and decision making in content learning.


  • Paper
  • pencil or pen
  • Algebra 2 textbook Prentice Hall, Algebra 2, page 248-254, Chapter 5 Lesson 5-3. Prentice Hall, FCAT Daily Skills and Practice Workbook Algebra 2 page 53- 54. Practice 5-3 worksheet.
  • Laptop
  • PowerPoint
  • Projector

Return to top of page
Return to lesson plans menu

   ETC > NSA Home > Math 9-12 > Translating Parabolas