Grouping can sometimes be a difficult task for teachers. How can we assure that students are working with different partners and hearing various perspectives. Creating "clock buddies" at the start of the year is something that I do in order to assure students are working with their classmates on a rotating schedule.
Pass out sheets to every student. Ask them to circulate throughout the room and write down the names of their classmates at all of the different numbers on the phone. Each student needs to fill out the numbers at the same times. Typically it works out that almost all students get their numbers filled out and then you will have to regroup at the end to see who is missing numbers.
At the start of each day I write on the board who students are to sit next to during discussions and who they will be working with during partner activities. This system allows for you to see which groups and students will need more support based on the pairings for that day.