The time off was a great chance to catch up on friends, rest, reading, etc. But the first days back after a break are always so unpleasant that I find myself wishing we hadn't had the time off. I've spent so much time on breaks planning activities to remind my students what I expect from them. The interactive do-nows involving the smartboard seem to have the most success, which means I have about half an hour before I have to ask my class "Can anyone remember the do now from today?"
In addition to the 5 books I read over the break, I also read a few interesting articles, including this one from EducationWeek about a school designed to give teachers the time they need to plan. My own school has started discussing how to build some planning time into the end of this year and beginning of next. The end of our time off always changes my perspective on how we spend our time at school. I'd love to know how successful schools and teachers plan their prep time.