Bathroom Duty

A toilet unstopper. A kid brought it to school for some reason. I’m waiting for his mom to pick it up “one of these days.” —Amalthea E.


Organ-ic Stress Relief?

A stress ball in the shape of a liver…dubbed a “stress reliver” by a student. —Carrie G.


Smells Like Teen Spirit

Aqua Velva. From an eighth grader who doused himself regularly during class. —Mary L.


Far From the Tree

A mummified apple. —Tanna C. S.


Open for Business

Cheddar-flavored crickets, a plastic eyeball, fake nerdy glasses, a plastic crown, and all sorts of weird, random stuff that I’ve accumulated over the years. —Adrian V.


Through the Wardrobe

The directions to Narnia. —Michel S.


Museum Piece

My first cell, a Motorola flip phone, circa 1993. The battery is bigger than my current iPhone. —Karl U.


Blow Your Troubles Away

Bubbles. I teach high school, so they are solely for me. —Jodi G. G.


Kind of a Big Dill

A pickle whistle (it’s a whistle that looks like a pickle). —Shauna K. H.


Start Off on the Right Foot

At times, there has been a prosthetic foot in my desk. —Katherine H. E.


Masks, Mics, and More

You name it, I probably have it in my desk: monster gloves, masks, microphones, edible cockroaches, etc. —Julie L.


Beauty School

Fake nails a student was peeling off during class. She told me, “My mom wants them back….” —Autumn F.


Cabinet of Curiosities

A dehydrated frog… —Desti P.


Emergency Fairy Kit

I have a tutu. For myself (LOL). And enough glitter to cover the school. —Caroline R. C.



A bowling ball…a prank from a former student. It’s comfortable to rest my feet on! —Stacey U.


Gruesome Plot

A mummified bat. I found it in my grandmother’s attic about 15 years ago, and it goes great with a read-aloud I do with my first graders. —Joe E.


Tell the Tooth

A lost retainer. —Nath S. K.


Better Than the Real Thing

A wind-up cockroach. —Joanne D. O.


Illustration: Gary Clement