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Between theaters, DVDs, and internet streaming, accessing your favorite movie has never been easier. With so much choice, though, finding your best option can be tricky. When you want to watch a movie, how can you figure out which service offers the most value?

In this lesson, students write and graph systems of linear equations to determine which of three movie rental services they would use. With all the money they save, they’ll be able to rent even more movies!

Students will

  • Write and graph equations for the cost of three rental services in terms of the number of movies rented
  • Consider costs related to watching movies (e.g. buying a DVD player), and adjust equations accordingly
  • Solve systems of equations graphically and algebraically
  • Discuss other features to consider besides cost, and how those features might affect the choice of service

Before you begin

Students should be able to graph and evaluate linear functions. Prior familiarity with writing linear equations will also be useful, so that this lesson can be used to introduce systems of linear equations and how to solve them.

Common Core Standards

Content Standards
Mathematical Practices


Netflix, RedBox, Apple