Traditional and Out of the Ordinary Warm Ups

One of the best things about warm ups is the opportunity for students to make mistakes. You read that sentence correctly. It was not a typo. Mistakes are a great way to learn a language and we want students to make them. We also want students to make them at the start of class so the teacher can make corrections. This translates into students making less errors that interfere with communication when the class material becomes more complex and the lesson progresses.

The first ten minutes of class should be a time to review, participate, make some errors and move toward some new material. The warm up should set the tone for the rest of the class. An activity that is too difficult will cause students to lose interest and the remainder of the class can be disastrous.

Here are some ideas for varying your warm ups and keeping students interested.  


  • Kahoot
  • Quizlet
  • Edpuzzle
  • Flipgrid


  • Interpersonal conversations
  • A/B activities
  • Parameter match
  • Music
  • Add a word chain story

For thought

  • Quotes
  • Journal activities
  • Deaf Culture our Way Book
  • Culture reading/discussion


  • D-PAN
  • ASL That
  • Daily Moth
  • ASL Stew


  • Guessing games
  • Vocab circle
  • Survivor
  • Fingerspelling games


  • Pre-Quiz
  • Pictures
  • Complete the sentence (teacher or student made)
  • 4 corners

Calico Spanish has a lot of quick ways to warm up students and many of them are applicable to ASL. You can also read about why you should use warm ups from my last blog post.

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