Umm, if i had to guess, I'd say the problem wants you to find a way to arrange 3 element vectors and 3x3 matrices to perform a simple scalar multiplication.

Let's say you want to multiply some scalars a and b:

a*b = [a 0 0] * [1 0 0; 0 0 0; 0 0 0] * [b; 0; 0]

That's a way to write a scalar multiplication using 3-element vectors and a 3x3 matrix..assuming that's what the question is asking.