An anonymous tip:
On the first day of small undergrad seminar-type classes, I hand out a questionnaire with the usual stuff (name, major/minor, why are you taking this class?), plus a query about language background (since I teach literature in a minority/lesser-taught language), and a chance for the student to self-disclose about learning styles, preparation or lack thereof, disposition or disability ("What do I need to know about you to teach you better?"), as well as a question about favorite texts related to the course topic and a final, open-ended "Where are you from and where do you hope to end up?". Then, in the next class I hand out a "quiz" using that information and the answers to all the questions are one or more names of others in the class ("Who's from Florida? Who knows what "ausgezeichnet" means? Who loves sonnets?), and they have to try and find the people whose names fit (and there are multiple questions for each person). This helps them learn everyone else's name and feel more comfortable in class as they find some commonalities with their classmates. I also throw in some random questions that apply to me and perhaps also to them, just for fun.