Linear Programming Projects

The linear programming projects were conducted with strong, rising eighth grade students; this could also be done in Algebra II. The curriculum that inspired these projects is an Operations Research curriculum that came out of a partnership between Wayne State and NC State Universities. Linear programming is a branch of applied mathematics that seeks to answer, for example, a product mix question like: I have two types of chocolate,fancy and regular. Fancy is more expensive for both the owner and for customers. Which is the right mix of chocolates to make to maximize the store’s profit under constraints? Students worked with large linear systems over the course of the summer using matrices and the TI-84. The linear programming project is a graphical culmination of that work. Students are encouraged to come up with scenarios of their own making that fit into the linear programming process. Student work is presented in class and then displayed throughout school public spaces.

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