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The 3R’s for a Clean Today and Cleaner Tomorrow!

In all our constant efforts as parents, teachers and responsible citizens to teach our children, students and youth, the importance of cleanliness, we forget to stop and take stock of what is actually happening around us.

As I found out with surprise when I took a group six boys, including two of my own children for a picnic. My sons had their little Spiderman backpacks ready and packed with enough tissues and four bottles of boiled water. I praised their insight but inwardly sighed, wondering why they did not display such foresight when it came to academics. At the park too, they received praise from an elderly lady for cleaning up the sand pit by removing food wrappers and empty cans.

I was surprised once more, when one morning whilst reading the newspaper and listening to one of my favourite singers, my sons suddenly rushed out of their rooms at alarming speed and asked how did I know that particular song. Looking exasperated they sang along with Jack Johnson (who was happily singing “The 3R’s”):

“Three it’s a magic number

Yes it is, it’s a magic number

Because two times three is six

And three times six is eighteen

And the eighteenth letter in the alphabet is R

We’ve got three R’s we’re going to talk about today

We’ve got to learn to

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

If you’re going to the market to buy some juice

You’ve got to bring your own bags and you learn to reduce your waste

And if you’re brother or your sister’s got some cool clothes

You could try them on before you buy some more of those

Reuse, we’ve got to learn to reuse

And if the first two R’s don’t work out

And if you’ve got to make some trash

Don’t throw it out

Recycle, we’ve got to learn to recycle,

We’ve got to learn to

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle”

Their happy voices had me cheering on in delight and I was really glad that both, Johnson and Ms. Shah (their teacher), were helping mould my children to live clean!

Karen Rajesh

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