The mathematical portion of this project consists of two 3 x 3 systems of equations and two 2 x 2 systems of equations. In addition to the systems of equations problems, the solutions of these problems require a bit of mental exercises for the student to be able to assemble a message based on a code table and the solutions to the systems of equations problems.
This project also contains a two-page story. Some school districts encourage English across the curricula as a way to improve overall student language skills. There several approaches that you can take. You may choose to require the student to write the story, as described in the project description. Or, you can change the points assigned and make the story an extra credit portion of the assignment and assign the majority of the points to the problems. Or you could simply omit the story-writing portion of the project.
Some students hate having to write a story, but most enjoy it. Some will become absorbed by it. You will occasionally have a student who will write a 10-15 page story. Many of the students like to compare their story to their friend's story.
If you choose to include the story as part of the assignment, the points awarded should be based on the students' effort to write the story, based on the length of the story. Not all students do well in English composition, and since this is a math class, the points for the story should not be based on English grammatical composition and skill; but instead only on story length. If a student writes an exceptional story, you may consider extra credit.