"Mark Miller" is the second chapter of Wayside School is Falling Down. It marks the debut of Benjamin Nushmutt.


Mrs. Jewls and a new student are standing in the front of the classroom. Mrs. Jewls announces that the new kid is named Mark Miller, and that he comes from Magadonia, but the narrator soon reveals that his name is actually Benjamin Nushmutt, and he comes from Hempleton, rather than Magadonia. However, Benjamin is too afraid to correct the teacher, so he finds his new seat, where he is greeted by Todd and Bebe. The narrator reveals that Benjamin would always have trouble revealing his name to people, and he never understood why. The bell rings for recess, and the other students go down to the playground. He thinks about telling Mrs. Jewls his real name, but changes his mind soon after. He sits at the top of the stairs, only to hear a thick rumbling. He worries that an earthquake is going to occur, but it is only the sound of the other students running upstairs. The other students were worried where he was, and he is glad to see they all cared about him. They are then all brought back inside, and they are handed a work sheet. Benjamin isn't sure if he should sign his name as Benjamin or Mark, until Louis comes in with his lunch. Worrying that Mrs. Jewls would think he is making up his name for a lunch, he embraces his new identity.


Memorable quotes

  • "But don't go in the basement," warned Sharie. "Whatever you do, don't go in the basement."
  • "There's no Benjamin in my class," said Mrs. Jewls.


  • Benjamin first appears here, making him the last student in Mrs. Jewls's class to be introduced. As well as this, it is the first appearance of Bebe, Deedee, Ron, Calvin, Sharie, and Dameon in Wayside School is Falling Down, though Sharie was mentioned in "A Package for Mrs. Jewls".