Finding a pile of shoes in my classroom is a common occurrence, though this is an unusually large gathering. Why do shoes find their way into a clump with no feet attached?
No, we are not experimenting with air freshener,
No, they aren't needing to dry out from the rain.
If you come to my class unprepared I have a cart with pencils, erasers, sharpeners, pens, scissors, glue sticks, etc. You may take what you need, but must leave a shoe in exchange.
Yes, a shoe.
Some teachers swap for books, planners, IDs, etc. At the end of the day I don't want any of those items left in my room.
The swap allows for accountability. A shoe guarantees I will get my things back at the end of the period and not have extra student belongings. They may not notice that their ID is not around their neck, but they notice that they are in stocking feet.