I am always looking for new ways to partner my students up and I found a great technique in Total Participation Techniques.
Many of the techniques allow students to mingle with peers while discussing/figuring out concepts taught. This relies on having students work with partners a lot. You can put students with partners in many ways such as desk partners, grade partners, or number partners. One of the best (and used the most in my classroom) techniques for putting students in partners is the use of an appointment card. The book goes into great detail on this partnering technique and I immediately fell in love with the practicality and ease of this technique.
Basically, students set up appointments ahead of time and when you need them to work with a partner you have them pull out their laminated appointment card and say "I want you to work with your 2pm appointment." My students always ask if they can meet with their appointment partners. Click on the picture of the appointment cards for a ready-to-go template.
Tip: If you have an odd number of students make sure they make an appointment where there will be 3 of them in a group.
Trust me when I say that this is the professional resource to have in EVERY classroom. What methods do you use to partner your students?