Learn English – figurative term equivalent to the German idiom “Fingerübung”


Just recently I was wondering on how to best translate the figurative German word 'Fingerübung'

In particular I am referring to the second meaning in the authorative German dictionary duden1, which
translates to

b) small/easy piece of an exercise (translation: me)

In my research, I stumpled upon the verbatim translation finger exercise, however it only seems to be valid for the first meaning in German, i.e. its meaning being limited to music2.

I also encountered the phrase apprentice piece but I was not able to find water-proof resources or a confirmative entry of the dictionaries I know of.

So my question remains, is there an equivalent idiom (preferably a single word, if there is one for this purpose) in the English language that can be used figuratively in the sense that it refers to a small, easy exercise which neither needs much time nor effort to solve or complete3?

Footnotes & References:

1 https://www.duden.de/rechtschreibung/Fingeruebung

2 vide, e.g. https://www.lexico.com/definition/finger_exercise or https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/finger-exercises resp.

3 To give an example for the use of the word in the German language. For instance, one can refer to small, i.e. not out-of-the-oridnary tricky, calculus problems such as solving an integral or computing the derivative of a well-behaved function as a 'Fingerübung' (when the student itself attends a lecture on 'Mathematical Methods in Physics', in which tasks like integrals or derivatives are seen as preliminaries.)

Best Answer

I'd say "warm-up problem" or "warm-up exercise" might be a good translation if you're using it in school or college courses.

From Merriam-Webster:

Warm-up: a preparatory activity or procedure.