Ideas for automatic rewards for manually turning off lights?

Having lived in a home with occupancy sensors in every room, it seems my children have completely forgoten how to turn lights off.

I have a notion that I could get my kids to be better about manually turning off lights if there was some kind of automatic reward/encouragement.


  • Immediate positive feedback (maybe a fun sound)
  • Children not penalized for having light on while in use
  • Encourage shutting lights off, but does not encourage light switch raves (i.e. flicking light on and off repeatedly.)

Some ideas

  • fun sound plays when light shutoff
  • manually shutting off light increases counter, which makes automatic timeout longer for that room (and conversely, automatic shutoff reduces the counter)
  • sound plays, but long term reward not offered if lights are flipped off after less than 1 minute.
  • Warning\Request to turn light off manually if not in use, prior to automatically shutting light off.

*Could be difficult/impossible to reward individual effort.

Any other thoughts?

I wouldn’t overcomplicate it. The following article has a lot of good suggestions:

One of the best just to do a walk-through before you leave the house and again before they go to bed and reward them at that moment for the rooms that have the lights turned off when they should be off. And do an occasional random check. I wouldn’t worry about trying to pick which particular kid had done it, just reward the group. That way they’ll be more likely to remind each other as well. :sunglasses:

But do read the article, it has several good ideas.